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Marketing “Made in the USA”

The label “Made in the USA” has received high credibility overseas and it creates a special marketing cachet for business owners. This article elaborates on the marketing strategy of emphasizing the high quality of products when made in the U.S.


Successful Marketing Strategy Example

Kokatat is a 45-year-old firm in Arcata, California that sells clothing both locally and internationally. 90 percent of the annual revenue comes from the gear made in its Arcata factory. As stated by Jeff Turner, Kokatat’s sales manager, “The root of our brand is the quality we can bring to market when we know our products are coming out of our own factory.” Turner highlighted the marketing strategy of manufacturing clothing with high quality is the key to the success of his company.

Building awareness of the high-quality clothing to distant clients, Kokatat runs an extensive international social media marketing program. Team Kokatat, an elite group of whitewater and sea kayaking pros, contributed to this end by blogging for the company and releasing videos. The company is very active on social media and treats social media as a primary outlet to deliver the message to distant clients.

Kokatat’s strategy on social media created a high demand for its product offshore. The company sells in the market including Asia, Europe, and Australia. Also, its clients include the U.S Navy and Coast Guard, the Danish military, and the government of Australia.

Lessons on capitalizing on “Made in the USA”

U.S. manufacturers, like Kokatat, learned that high-quality products created in U.S. factories have a special cachet in distant markets. Many companies successfully expand their global research and diversify their clients overseas by capitalizing on “Made in the USA” credibility in their marketing and outreach. Overseas customers recognize this credibility and commitment to quality that is associated with “Made in the USA” products.


Strategies to Market a Company Using U.S credibility

Know your value proposition

Kokatat is retailing over $1,000.00 on average for each of their products, and the pricing of their products are substantially more costly than its competitor’s products. The high price of Kokatat’s products is justified by the “almost fanatical commitment to making sure its protective clothing lasts a lifetime.” The plant manufacturers ensure that each suit is truly waterproof and without faults before the suit leaves its plant and the company offers a lifetime guarantee. Also, for $35.00, Kokatat will repair any suit that was torn by brambles in the woods or by rocks from outdoor activities. Its commitment to quality has been incorporated into its marketing strategy.

Let Labels do the Talking

For some products, there are selling points for the U.S. made products both to domestic and international clients. Due to the high standard of quality that is made in the U.S., many retailers prefer U.S. made products more than products that are made in countries with a lower quality standard. For example, a Rutland, Vermont based cookie cutters manufacturer, Ann Clark Cookie Cutters, promotes at every opportunity that its cookie cutters are free of dangerous heavy metals because they are complying with the United States’ high safety standards. As its CEO, Ben Clark stated, “You cannot find our name without the words ‘Made in the USA.’ We put it everywhere.” The company values its “Made in the USA” label because it enhances its competitive advantage in the cookie cutter industry. The label marketing strategy assists the company to ship its cookie cutters to six to eight European retailers, as well as clients in Japan, Mexico, and New Zealand.

Reinforce your products’ safety

Companies that manufacture their products in the United States must meet the rigorous safety standards for their products. This should be advertised as retailers feel reassurance when they discover a product is meeting a higher safety standard in the U.S. For example, Ann Clark Cookie Cutters posted on their website and advertised that its products had complied with the safety requirements under California’s Proposition 65 for lead and cadmium, Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act for lead, Bureau Veritas country of origin marking, and FDA-Generally Recognized as Safe for metals intended to come into contact with food. Multiple independent entities’ have recognized their compliance, and the company has benefitted by being able to market the products as high-quality U.S. made products.

Use the right sales channels

After having a label of “Made in the USA,” multiple recognitions from independent agencies, and strategic pricing, the final step is to have the right sales channels to export the products to its consumers. With the growth of online shopping, it has been a huge advantage for a company to sell their U.S. made products online. Since there are many customers who valued the high quality of U.S. made products, exporting the products to overseas customers had become a recommended strategy.


The Benefit of Legal Service

To implement all marketing strategies of “Made in the USA,” a strong legal/team of attorneys might be needed. Attorneys could assist your company by providing legal advice on your compliance with the independent agencies. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has strict regulations for businesses who choose to claim their products are “Made in the USA.” Also, attorneys can be consulted on complex matters that arise in exporting or importing. Our firm is experienced in serving both domestic and international clients. Our firm’s scope of service regarding independent agencies’ compliance can assist you.


Wang IP Law Group, P.C. is a Los Angeles based full service legal firm that specializes in intellectual property law (patent, trademark, copyright, and licensing agreement), business and commercial litigation, and a wide range of other legal matters including immigration, real estate, and landlord/tenant cases. Our multilingual attorneys represent clients from all over California and internationally from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, and Israel.
If you have questions or would like a consultation in regards to the content of this publication, please contact us by calling (888) 827-8880 or email us at [email protected]. For more information about the firm and the services please visit www.TheWangIPLaw.com.