Many B2B marketers think primarily of the traditional marketing funnel that encourages prospects to self-identify and then proceed to a sales funnel. Traditional direct and outbound techniques focus on sending messages straight to clients or prospective buyers that you’ve identified.
However, many B2B business owners make the same mistake (to some extent) of executing decades-old marketing strategies to B2B marketing. While these kinds of techniques do have a reserved place in your marketing tool kit, the world of B2B marketing funnel has evolved and expanded, which has led to a change in the services of professional services buyers.
A new study from marketing research firm Gartner found that despite the rapid progress and spread of digital access, 77% of B2B buyers still feel that making a purchase is a time-consuming experience.
Keeping this in mind, B2B marketers must assess how their B2B marketing strategy aligns with the psychology of their potential buyers. B2B marketers must create a marketing plan that is based on the customer’s predominance.
Today, buyers are likely to search for products and services on Google and evaluate the company rather than checking on personal references. This has expanded the range of B2B marketing strategies at your disposal. To survive in today’s competitive market scenario, you have to take full advantage of a wide spectrum of strategies.
That said, it can be difficult to get effective B2B marketing right. Marketers often have a lot to juggle between channel decisions, creative demands, and budget limits, when developing their marketing strategies.
Undoubtedly, your audience is the biggest determinant of effective marketing. If you’re not potently targeting your potential customers’ persona, your promotions and advertisement will probably not deliver expected results.
There’s a considerable difference between targeting individual consumers and businesses. Some businesses serve individual shoppers, while others cater to organizations and companies. Marketing to businesses calls for taking a different approach to individual consumers.
This is the reason behind the existence of a different marketing method i.e. B2B marketing. After spending nearly ten years on the front lines of the digital marketing transformation, I’ve gained considerable knowledge about what it takes to succeed and what causes failure. And that’s the reason why I penned down this insightful guide for you.
Below, I have mentioned in detail everything you need to know about creating successful winning marketing strategies. By the time you end up reading this article, you will have a clear understanding of B2B marketing, the most fruitful marketing strategies, and how you can attract your audiences to potential customers.
Let’s get started with the basics first.
“A complete all-in-one solution for marketing teams to collaborate with other teams in one centralized location. Switch to ProofHub TODAY!”
Table of Contents
- What Is B2B Marketing?
- Who Should Use B2B Marketing?
- What Is The Purpose Of B2B Marketing?
- Quintessential B2B Marketing Strategies To Grow Your Business
- Strategy#1: Develop Your B2B Branding
- Strategy#2: In-depth Research
- Strategy#3: B2B Referral Marketing
- Strategy#4: A High-Performance Website
- Strategy#5: Utilize Social Media To The Max
- Strategy#6: A Solid Content Marketing Strategy
- Strategy#7: B2B Email Marketing Best Practices
- Strategy#8: B2B Organic and Paid Search Marketing
- Strategy#9: Internal Communication And Brand Alignment
What Is B2B Marketing?
As the term suggests. B2B or business to business marketing refers to any marketing strategy of products or services to other businesses and organizations. Any business that sells its products or services to other businesses generally uses B2B marketing strategies to register increased sales.
What Separates B2B From B2C Marketing?
B2B marketing is different from traditional B2C (business-to-consumer) marketing as the latter focuses solely on customers. B2B marketing content tends to be simpler and informational as compared to B2C because business purchase decisions are based on bottom-line revenue impact. In the current marketing environment, B2B marketers often sell to purchasing committees with various key stakeholders.
B2B marketing’s objectives aim for the needs, interests, and challenges of individuals who are making purchases on behalf of, or for, their organization, thus making the organization the customer.
Some Examples of Successful B2B Companies
- Flexfire LEDs, which receives more than 80% of its revenue from B2B sales.
- Besides B2C business, Amazon plays a major role in B2B e-commerce businesses as in the name of Amazon Business.
- General Electric is a famous B2B conglomerate e-commerce company that includes different industry verticals like healthcare, lighting, aviation, finance, etc.
- WeWork is a coworking space that leases office spaces to freelancers and remote teams.
- Printful is on-demand order fulfillment, warehousing, and screen printing service.
Some Amazing Stats About B2B Business
- 50% of B2B businesses are done through mobile phones and this figure is expected to increase up to 70% in 2020.
- 46% of B2B buyers are millennials.
- In 2020, B2B e-commerce sales are expected to grow more than B2C e-commerce sales.
- 80% of B2B buying decisions are based on a buyer’s direct or indirect customer experience, and only 20% is based on the price or the actual offering.
- 50% of users say they’re more likely to buy from a company they communicate with on LinkedIn.
Who Should Use B2B Marketing?
Any business that sells its products or services to other companies needs to use B2B marketing to create brand awareness as well as register growth in sales and revenue. For example, security solutions, software-as-a-service (SaaS) subscriptions, tools, accessories, office supplies, and many more. Many organizations fall under both the B2B and B2C umbrellas.
B2B marketing campaigns are created for any individual(s) with control or influence on purchasing decisions. This can include a wide range of titles, roles, and functions, from low-level researchers up to the C-suite.
What Is The Purpose Of B2B Marketing?
B2B marketing is a different ball game altogether. Given below are a few reasons that make B2B marketing a vital ingredient in the organization’s marketing plans.
Extended Sales Cycle- B2B business’ sales and purchase cycle last longer. Hence, different strategies and actions are required for marketing products and services to B2B prospective clients. It mainly depends on the current stage of the lifecycle of prospects. Mature products usually call for easy marketing strategies.
B2B Marketing Is Important Because Of Complex Products And Services
Since B2B products are complex, B2B marketing has to be sophisticated, subtle, and technical to make the content persuasive and easy to understand for the users. Buyers are limited, so it’s obvious they are harder to find. Therefore, the product marketing strategy should reach and influence the target audience to change the buying decision.
B2B Marketing Talks About Varied Buying Emotions
You cannot assume that there’s no role of buying emotions in B2B marketing because your targets are not ‘live people’. Even though your potential buyers are other businesses, they are owned and operated by humans. So, you need to influence their emotions in a way that they trust your products or services. Experts are of the view that B2B marketing calls for extensive research before pitching a target customer as the risk of making or failing to materialize a buying decision is high.
Increasing Sales Leads
B2B marketers are considering increasing sales leads as one of the most important purposes to narrow down the gap between marketing and sales. This emerging trend and the general inclusion of sales goals into the marketing process assists organizations to align their priorities, make B2B companies operate, and grow subsequently.
Creating And Increasing Brand Awareness
Prospects who are still in the awareness stage of their purchasing process should be targeted by companies with awareness-stage tactics. This will ensure prospects will come their way once they reach the consideration stage. To achieve this goal, you should make your brand reflect your company in a way that creates a strong positive impression on others and make them want to do business with you.
Converting Leads To Customers
B2B customers these days want a friendly and fast user experience so they can easily navigate to make quick purchases and make changes to their accounts. They don’t want to make repeated calls to sales representatives anymore. B2B marketing makes the traditional sales cycle a fast, frictionless process that removes unnecessary wastage of time and interaction.
Increasing Web Traffic
The importance of increasing organic web traffic and the need to have a strong digital presence cannot be overlooked in today’s digital marketing environment. B2B marketing can drive prospects to your brand with the possibility of capturing a lead. Also, frequent website visits improve and boost SEO rankings of your site as it becomes relevant to more users and Google.
“Use all powerful features under one roof and get more productivity with less time and effort. Sign up with ProofHub NOW and Get Started!”
Quintessential B2B Marketing Strategies To Grow Your Business
There is a broad range of B2B marketing strategies at your disposal today. To stay competitive today, you have to take full advantage of a wide range of strategies. However, the main question is which strategies are essential in today’s extremely competitive marketing environment?
Let’s have a look at some of the best B2B marketing strategies that will help your business not only survive and stay in the race but also get ahead of the competition.
Strategy#1: Develop Your B2B Branding
Your brand is the total of your logo, your name, promotional merchandise, and every single experience that your customer has with your company. Your brand is everything people know about it and how it makes them feel. So, your branding’s main objective should be to strongly connect with customers by giving them an intellectual and emotional experience they’ll remember for a long time. Strong brands are ones that grab people’s attention instantly and don’t let them go. Your brand should be able to show your customers why their lives would be better if they choose your products or services.
Strategy#2: In-depth Research
In-depth research is the solid foundation of any contemporary marketing strategy. Detailed scientific research of both marketplace and brand research will help you make well-informed decisions. Conducting research enables you to know your clients better, which gives you an advantageous position to serve them better. The Market research gives you insight into how your processes are performing. Studies have shown that the impact of conducting systematic research on prospects and clients helps companies grow three to ten times faster and be more profitable than those that don’t pursue research.
Strategy#3: B2B Referral Marketing
Word-of-mouth is still considered the best marketing even in today’s digital age. Unsurprisingly, 84% of B2B decision-makers begin the buying process based on a referral. If your more-than-satisfied customers (or non-customers who hold you in high regard) recommend your brand to their acquaintances then it’s likely to help your business score some good brownie points over competitors. However, you can’t wait for a referral to happen if you want to cash in on them. Creating a referral strategy helps you ensure that your happiest customers have a clear way to advocate for your brand. It’s mainly about three things:
- Giving customers a highly engaging experience they’d like to talk about
- Giving customers the tools to easily refer others to you
- Communicating with them every step of the way
Strategy#4: A High-Performance Website
This is the age of the Internet. You need to have an engaging, high-performing website to spread your brand name to the farthest corners. Globally the number of internet users increased from only 413 million in 2000 to over 3.4 billion in 2016. Your company’s website is one of your most crucial assets and a critical tool for building visibility. Potential clients should be able to find your website easily on the web so they can have a look at your firm’s expertise. Educational content, visually enhancing graphics, and carefully targeted offers can drive leads to closer engagements, eventually bringing qualified leads straight to you.
Strategy#5: Utilize Social Media To The Max
In 2020, there are 3.81 billion people actively using social media in the world, and this is an increase of 9.2% from 3.48 billion in 2019. These figures clearly consolidate the fact that social media is here to stay, and for long. Another research has found that over 60% check out new service providers on social media, which makes it a more commonly used source of information as compared to formal referrals and recommendations. Using popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and YouTube, you can expand the outreach of your brand to the target consumer segment. Put simply, social media allows you to network and connect with influencers and contacts. You can also monitor your brand with social listening.
Strategy#6: A Solid Content Marketing Strategy
Having a great website does not mean having only attractive images and graphics. Your B2B website should also back visually appealing images with high-quality, original, and engaging content to provide relevant information to website visitors. Content marketing has become a buzzword and it has turned out to be incredibly effective (when done right). The right approach to content marketing is by focusing on quality content rather than putting up keyword-stuffed content that will be rejected by Google anyhow. When you provide reliable and useful information to visitors, they begin to trust you as a brand.
Strategy#7: B2B Email Marketing Best Practices
Do you know that 93% of B2B marketers use email? If you’re not one of them then you should waste no time doing it. Email marketing is direct, it’s personal, and leads to engagement which turns subscribers into leads, and then customers. Email marketing is a must for your marketing strategy albeit with a plan. A few things you must remember are:
- Create enticing subject lines
- Create a calendar for email marketing and stick to it
- Use only one call-to-action (CTA) per email
- Plan your content
- Your email designs should be responsive
- Automate your messaging with good email marketing tools
Strategy#8: B2B Organic and Paid Search Marketing
Organic search results and paid search advertising can be an effective way to be highly visible to customers who use Google to search for desired products and services. When you know what words and phrases they’re using to search for answers then you can place ads that pop up when your customers search for them on Google. The best way to register an ROI from your paid ads is by including your buyer persona data and boosting content they can relate to. It’s likely that people know nothing about your brand, so focus on content that solves people’s problems rather than trying to sell them your products or services right off the bat.
Strategy#9: Internal Communication And Brand Alignment
You can’t offer your customers a great experience without having a determined and focused bunch of people who believe in your vision and direction, and want to put in their best efforts to achieve set goals. So, you should make sure that part of your marketing strategy also incorporates a plan for communicating your mission and vision to your workforce. Be consistent and constant in your communication, and remind your team the values you hold important and the behaviors that make them real for customers.
The Bottom Line
Marketing won’t reap you results unless you know for whom your marketing strategies are targeted for. It’s essential for your marketing strategies to communicate brand messages to potential consumers through the right channels. Your marketing should convey a message to other businesses that how their business could benefit from yours.
Using these proven strategies to connect with your B2B audience can help you finalize your buyer personas and forge profitable business relations for a long time to come. Since marketing teams have so many tasks to manage at a single time, using a feature-rich team collaboration and project management software can help automate much of their tasks and alleviate their workload.