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2020 Dynamic Dozen Top Sales/Marketing Professional: Christine Daues

Marketing Strategy Manager, Paul Mueller Co.

Posted online

Since Christine Daues took on the role of marketing strategy manager at Paul Mueller Co.’s Springfield office in 2015, she’s been leading the effort of creating a uniform brand for the company.

She says it’s been a challenge for her and her marketing team to create an aligned message for the 80-year-old, stainless steel manufacturer. The company didn’t have a marketing team prior to 2015, but it now has a global marketing manager, which leads a team of 11 employees worldwide, and Daues directs a team of nine employees at the Springfield headquarters.

“When marketing first started at (Paul Mueller Co.), you could walk down the hall and ask 10 different co-workers, ‘Who is Mueller?’ and you would get 10 different answers,” Daues says. “We started marketing efforts with a branding project to figure out what the Paul Mueller Co. brand was and what it stood for.”

The answer? Mueller Co. (OTC: MUEL) stands for a group of dedicated employees who lend their expertise to customers and create equipment to heat, cool and store everyday products, she says.

Now, Daues says her role is to work closely with the manufacturer’s 18 business units to develop formal business plans and marketing strategies, which means her days never look the same.

“Marketing implemented a brand for the company and aligned everyone on what that brand means and why we come to work every day,” she says.

The marketing team also launched a new website for the company in February 2018. That led the company’s organic, online search traffic to grow 44%, she says. The team also started Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube pages and have seen a triple-digit increase in social media engagement each year.

Global revenue jumped to $201 million in 2018 from $168 million in 2017, she says. The company reported a slight dip in 2019 sales to $197 million, while United States revenue rose 5.4% to $144.5 million, according to Mueller Co.’s 2019 annual report.

Daues is also leading the marketing team in developing a system of thought leadership, which is a management strategy that identifies certain people as informed leaders in their field of expertise.

“We have some very intelligent people at Mueller who often understand the customer processes better than the customer. Being able to harness that knowledge and feed the inbound strategy through online content, trade show speaking [and] white papers … is crucial to ongoing success,” Daues says.

“It’s a challenge we are getting better at every day.”

She says that though the marketing team has seen successes in the last few years, developing a uniform brand awareness for a longtime company like Mueller Co. isn’t a quick and easy task. With a continued focus on internal marketing strategies, Daues anticipates a correlation in sales and company earnings activity.

“Now, when you walk down the hall and ask 10 different co-workers, ‘Who is Mueller?’ you may just get three different answers. That’s progress,” she says. “Alignment of the language internally is the first key step in awareness of your brand. If we are not all rowing in synchronicity, the boat is going nowhere.”

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