Silver bullet marketing. This is the type of marketing where an agency promises you huge lead generation numbers or revenue gains via its “proprietary” process.

For example, a CNC machining company hired an agency that promised big numbers. Their “secret sauce” was based on custom videos that tied into their tested landing pages and cold outbound emails.

The machining company signed on at a cost of $120K for 12 months.

The agency created four videos using content and images from the existing website (so much for “custom”) and sent out the emails to their “targeted” lists.

The result? Several dozen “leads,” a few of which were good but went nowhere.

The machining company was out a whole lot of money – and declined to renew the contract. Unfortunately, they didn’t learn from this experience: they’re still looking for that silver bullet.

The opposite of silver bullet marketing: Consistent improvements over time

Almost every single manufacturer we’ve worked with has focused on improving shop floor productivity. Any change, no matter how small, is considered if it will save time and improve a process.

We’ve made the same discovery with regard to marketing. Instead of silver bullet marketing, we focus on the small changes that positively impact select metrics over the long haul.

Example: In 2019, a manufacturer wanted to improve the number of RFQs received. The sales team and the Huff team set a goal, then working together, we began looking at the entire RFQ process:

  • When prospects arrived at the website, how easy was it to find the form?
  • Did the form actually require all those fields?
  • Was the form going to the right people internally once the “submit” button was tapped/clicked?
  • How could the form process be speeded up for returning customers with repeat orders?
  • Were people able to find the products they needed on the website? If not, why not?
  • What was the time lapse between a person arriving at the website and submitting an RFQ? Could it be improved?
  • Did the product messaging match the questions sales were hearing from prospects? What was missing?

And on and on and on – for several years. The sales team made dozens of changes to its own internal processes while we made hundreds of small changes to the website and pay-per-click ads, created new content, provided feedback, etc.

We also created the time and space in our own process for the hard thinking that’s required for this type of work.

The result? Year-over-year gains in RFQ submissions with a corresponding increase in sales. In fact, we exceeded the RFQ goal each year.


While we’re proud of these results, we don’t rest on our laurels. The sales team has set a very high goal for 2023 – leading us to look at new ways to improve the website and marketing.

If this is the type of approach you want for your business and marketing, let’s have a conversation. Call 603-382-8093 or email to schedule a call.

Filed under: Our Thinking