B2B, or business to business companies, are unique organizations that require a well thought out and creative marketing plan. When you initially think about B2B marketing strategies for marketers, your mind might go straight to direct and outbound techniques for example sending messages straight to identified prospective clients. While that can work, it’s not always the best way to bring in new clients.
Now, do not get me wrong, these kinds of techniques certainly have a place in your marketing toolbox, but we live in an ever-evolving and digital world. If you want to be successful in your B2B marketing, you have to adjust to the developments and needs of businesses in the digital age.
To put it simply, you need strong B2B digital marketing.
The world of digital marketing for B2B companies has evolved. After all, clients are more likely to do a Google Search to find solutions to their pain points rather than waiting to be found. As a digital marketer, it’s your job to be a proactive answer not a reactive pusher of products to potential businesses.
Having a well-defined strategy is the key to improving the effectiveness of your B2B digital marketing efforts. Let’s take a look at 4 B2B digital marketing strategies you can utilize this year to increase your business exposure and numbers.
1. Research and Demographic Targeting
To begin with, you need to do your research and find your target demographics. If you have no idea who your target customer and audience is, you are simply wasting your time and money!
What every B2B digital marketing strategy has in common is targets that can be defined and refined. It’s impossible to market to everyone at once, so you need to concentrate on your core audience – those that need your products. Therefore you should ask yourself some of these questions:
Who is my audience and what buyers personas” can I create for them?
How do they communicate and how do they want to be communicated with?
What are their interests? Distastes?
What is their price range and buying habits?
What pain points can we address and how?
From marketplace research and buying behaviors to brand research, detailed marketing research will help you make more knowledgeable decisions as a business owner to not only better connect with your intended audience but also to give you an objective basis to measure results.
After doing your buyer persona research, it is time to focus on demographics. By narrowing down your audience using “hyper-targeting”, you save not only time but money on your marketing efforts.
Understanding the characteristics, needs and lifestyles of your consumers allows you to effectively and efficiently create products and services they need and marketing messages that they are sure to respond to.
As a B2B company, you will need to have a strong sense of who and how your products/services will help those buyers and research and market targeting will help you dramatically when it comes to connecting to your potential clients.
2. An Engaging and Informative Website
In today’s digital marketplace, your company’s website is so important! A website is more than just a pretty face, it is an online presentation of your business to truly showcase your expertise, quality, and solutions. It needs to be engaging and informative. Your B2B website is most likely the first way potential clients will interact with your business, in fact, 80% of people look at websites when checking out service providers so what you share and how it is shared is a crucial element.
The minute prospective clients visit your site, it should be an engaging, informative experience that provides offers and information that can drive leads and engagement. On top of the content, here are a few website “musts” to consider when looking at your B2B website:
Is your website, landing pages and content designed for your target audience?
Are you using significant SEO (search engine optimization) keywords?
Is your website mobile responsive and designed for mobile users? Many businesses are conducted on mobile, so this is important.
Does your website have calls-to-action encouraging website visitors to schedule a meeting, showcase etc?
Do you share content that is specific to your B2B business or generic content?
Is your website search engine optimized?
If you are looking at the list above and think you need to make some adjustments to your B2B website, you’ve got a great opportunity to improve it! In fact, the best websites are continually adjusted and changed to better target and communicate with potential customers. Since business evolves so much, website optimization is needed at least every 12 months.
3. Effective Website SEO
As explained briefly in website section, your target audience has to be able to find your site for it to be effective. That’s where search engine optimization helps! Though SEO is a complex and evolving marketing tactic, it ultimately consists of two primary components.
On-site SEO: Track keyword phrases that communicate the concepts on your site to search engines. This allows search engines to produce more relevant results to searchers. That way, if they are looking for you and your products/services, they will find you!
Off-site SEO: Track links to your website, either through outside engagement or guest articles in other publications. These efforts work to increase your site’s authority as a widely known leader on your topic and its content. Outside networking is always a great marketing strategy!
As you network, get featured, have more visitors visit your site and engage with your website, search engines will begin to see your site as more credible—resulting in higher rankings.
SEO is an incredible tool that can’t be overemphasized. After all, if you have no site visitors, you will not grow as a B2B business.
4. Referral Marketing
We mentioned at the beginning of this article, B2B marketing has changed. You no longer need to spend hours on the phones cold calling or sharing paper promotions—this has major implications for your B2B digital marketing because you are saving time to do other things and your business and marketing leads are coming from other places.
A lot of studies show that referrals are no longer coming from just clients, but from strangers online—just for the sheer fact that a business’s reputation was good enough.
Social proof will be always be a strong advocate for the success of your business and it just doesn’t stop at testimonials. Content marketing and really setting yourself apart as a reputable leader in your B2B area can really help others believe and share you are a top quality business to partner with.
If done well, your business can stick in people’s brains and they will want to share it with other people. This brand recognition can lead to client referrals and new businesses.
More so, you can also give current customers referral perks, promotional offers and partnership levels for promoting your business.
B2B Digital Marketing: You can do This!
Do not be afraid to try out innovative strategies that explore new possibilities in the age of digital marketing. Make use of modern digital platforms like social media, video sharing and remember that customer service is at the heart of all of these strategies. Follow up and learn from your business clients, those two things paired together will really set you up for success!