In B2C marketing, it is normal for a customer to whip out their credit card and buy a product after seeing an advert. However, B2B marketing is more sophisticated due to company procurement procedures. Besides, decision-making involves a group of people from various departments. Despite its complexity, B2B marketing still benefits from digital marketing strategies.
Traditionally a B2B buyer followed a predictable path in the marketing funnel. Therefore, it was easy to market through cold calls and sales adverts. While there is a tremendous shift from the controlled marketing funnel, 77% of B2B buyers still loathe the purchasing process.
Nowadays, typical marketing techniques do not produce great results. Some of the reasons for this include:
- Majority of B2B buyers are millennials who frown upon cold calls.
- The decision-making group is slightly larger, and every individual has distinct opinions.
- With 67% of purchases being influenced by online information, the buyer is well informed.
- B2B buyers loop back and forth through the buyer’s journey.
With knowledge of the buyers’ journey, how do you execute a B2B digital marketing strategy?
How to Execute a B2B Digital Marketing Strategy
Step 1: Identify the Target Audience
Knowing the company names and the job titles of your potential customers will get you nowhere. You need to gain an insight into the customer, understand their preferences, shopping style, and things that influence their buying decisions. Take time to build a buyer persona for an effective B2B marketing strategy.
Your buyer profiles should focus on psychographics instead of demographics. Dwell on the fears, aspirations, beliefs, and motivation of the buyers. An in-depth study will reveal the customer’s pain points. Knowing these pain points will allow you to connect with them on an emotional level, you understand their struggles and you are willing to provide them with a solution. Target audience personas are vital in creating a targeting strategy.
So where can you get buyer's information? Google analytics provides terrific insights on your frequent visitors. You can also utilise social media to study the behaviours of your target audience.
Step 2: Situational Analysis
Before setting up a digital marketing strategy, you need to carry out an investigation on the market, your competitors, and the industry trends. You do not want to dive into a plan unprepared for future changes. Begin with analysing the companies that buy from you. What is their size, budgets, and industry? Do they have buying cycles?
You also need to keep an eye on your competition. The ways you stack up your competitors determine the success of the strategy. Tools like Socialbakers and Monitor Backlinks could come in handy. You should also keep in mind the industry trends and digital trends that may affect your marketing strategy.
It is vital to analyse the current performance of your digital marketing activities. What are their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats?
Step 3: Define Your Objectives
What goals do you hope to achieve with your digital marketing strategy? Some goals include increasing brand awareness, building online networks, and improving engagements on social media. While we all want a 100% increase in sales volumes and brand loyalty, it may not be realistic in the short run. Therefore, ensure your goals are specific and realistic. You may want to identify key performance indicators to act as a benchmark. Use the SMART framework to help you plan your goals.
Step 4: Align Your Goals to Digital Marketing Strategies
With a clear picture of your current position, you need to match the goals with digital marketing strategies. That way, you can prioritise your objectives and allocate the necessary resources for their achievement. For example, if you want to boost sales, your strategies should focus on lead generation and nurturing. However, if your brand awareness is low, you need techniques that promote your business.
You can also focus solely on customer retention strategies. What if you want a little bit of everything? Make sure you monitor the performance of the plan. Our B2B marketing experts can help you come up with a winning strategy.
Step 5: Implement, Measure, and Tweak
Implement your B2B marketing strategy using inbound marketing. In inbound marketing, you attract customers to visit your site by providing valuable content. Therefore, you need to choose relevant content for your success. Creating a content calendar will help you post frequently and increase your leads. While 48% of content marketers have a content strategy, only 32% have it documented. You also need to evaluate its performance and make necessary changes.
Elements Involved in a B2B Digital Marketing Strategy
At the mention of marketing, your thoughts go to outbound techniques. While social media ads may work, it is no longer the best way to get more customers through the door. Here are B2B tactics that will guarantee success for your digital marketing campaign.
Your company’s website design is vital to the success of your marketing. The site portrays your services and professionalism. 80% of buyers look at the website when making a purchase decision. Your website should be easy to navigate, mobile responsive, and contain relevant content. Read more about optimizing your website here.
Design your website to suit your target audience and use SEO keywords to drive leads. You should also include calls-to-action and social proof. However, before deciding the inbound marketing techniques to use, you should ensure your website is attractive.
2. Content marketing
You need relevant and evergreen content to establish an online presence. Informational articles and in-depth guides present you as an expert in your field. Therefore, you should publish various types of content.
3. Search engine optimisation
Without proper SEO, buyers will be unable to find you online. Therefore, you need to incorporate relevant keywords, links, and high-quality images to improve your visibility. SEO boosts your ranking and improves your visibility.
4. Social media
Social media is intensive, and most B2B businesses shy away from it. However, social media is effective in bringing more customers to your business. Nevertheless, you need to keep them engaged.
B2B digital marketing success requires a lot of strategic planning. However, the above tactics are vital in ensuring success. You must also analyse the strategies to determine their achievements