In today’s market, business-to-business (B2B) organizations should implement the latest marketing strategies. They can help you reach quality leads quickly and cost-effectively. With ideal techniques, you can say goodbye to overpriced outbound strategies that leave you waiting around for customers.
The secret to success lies in addressing the needs of modern professional service buyers, which this article will help you understand. Let experienced professionals show you what B2B marketing strategies are, how it’s different from B2C marketing, typical novice mistakes, and the best strategies you can implement for 2022. Let’s get right to it.
What Is B2B Marketing?
Many people believe that B2B is a minor sector, but recent B2B statistics reveal that its e-commerce industry in the U.S. alone is now worth a whopping $6.7 trillion. As a startup or a small B2B company, you have so much growth potential!
As the name implies, B2B marketing refers to the process of marketing products or services to companies to strengthen manufacturer-to-wholesaler or wholesaler-to-retailer relationships. If you are part of a B2B organization, you focus your marketing efforts on corporate decision-makers.
In a contemporary setting, you often deal with buying committees and stakeholders. This group includes various titles, from low-level researchers to C-suite partners. While this may sound like a complex task, you can now use accurate data sources to develop personalized strategies.
Here are some common tactics B2B marketers use:
- Email marketing: Many specialists fear that email marketing is dead, but it’s not. With average click and read rates reaching 5% and 25%, this strategy is still widely popular across various sectors.
- Social media marketing: The U.S. social media community has reached an impressive 240 million — a jaw-dropping 72.3% of the population. Over 70% of potential B2B clients use this platform to find suppliers.
- Messenger marketing: This strategy has grown popular in the B2B sector. Nowadays, you can use Facebook or LinkedIn to simplify your communications with partners through auto-responses and widgets.
- SMS marketing: Most professionals are on their phones all the time. With a stunning 98% open rate, you can use SMS marketing to complement your other strategies.
- Referral marketing: Also called word-of-mouth marketing, this technique influences 20 – 50% of purchasing decisions. Once you build your reputation, you can earn referrals even from non-clients.
Like many B2B companies, you can use these tactics to complement your holistic approach.
Later, we’ll discuss groundbreaking techniques that will take these efforts to new heights.
B2B Marketing vs B2C Marketing
B2B and B2C marketing share some best practices, but they have core differences that set them apart. Below are some of their distinctions.
The most pronounced differentiator between B2B and B2C marketing is the target market.
As a B2B marketer, your goal is to capture, engage, and move decision-makers into action. You don’t have to exert much effort communicating with the rest of the company or even the end-user.
For example, if you offer medical-grade facial masks, you don’t have to get in touch with every single doctor, technician, and nurse in the hospital. Instead, you have to appeal to board members, executives, and administrators.
On the other hand, B2C marketers sell directly to consumers. They can develop campaigns for various buyer personas. For instance, a retailer selling teenage clothes can target teenagers or their parents.
Logic vs Emotion
Telling a compelling story is an essential element in any marketing campaign. While B2B and B2C marketing require telling powerful tales, they use different techniques.
With B2B marketing, you should appeal to a client’s logic. When telling potential customers about your products and services, stick to facts and veer away from emotions. However, remember to deliver your message as jargon-free as possible. Use a language that your audience understands.
In B2C marketing, companies appeal to emotions when telling a narrative. They usually use happiness, sadness, or fear to elicit a desired response.
Because of a small customer pool (compared to B2C companies), B2B marketing focuses on building personal relationships that foster long-term business. When you develop such partnerships, you embody your organization’s practices, morals, and ethics. These connections allow you to distinguish your establishment from competitors and build your brand.
However, with B2C marketing, firms establish transactional relationships that lead customers to their websites, physical stores, or e-commerce stores. While B2B marketing focuses on relationships, B2C marketing prioritizes selling products and services.
If you sell to other businesses, the purchasing process usually involves a long chain of command, sometimes involving several department heads. Since you deal with various decision-makers, the procedure often becomes more complex with every passing day.
The B2C buying cycle is a much simpler one because consumers can make decisions in minutes. B2C marketers don’t have to spend as much on one lead because decisions typically involve just one person.
B2B decision-makers respond to data-driven campaigns containing information on return on investment (ROI), product efficiency, financial incentives, etc. If you want to appeal to this market, it’s essential to be as informative as possible.
On the other hand, consumers respond to the exciting parts of the purchase process, from influencer marketing to massive deals to freebies.
Common B2B Marketing Mistakes
No matter how polished your campaigns are, one wrong move can quickly undo all your progress. Check out this list of B2B marketing mistakes that do more harm than good.
Not Knowing Your Clients
One of the worst things you can do for your business is develop generic campaigns without a specific target in mind. B2B companies may have fewer customers than B2C organizations, but it doesn’t mean you can treat every client similarly.
Before creating a B2B marketing strategy for 2022, segment your clients into particular qualities, like industry, size, and location. When you segment your clientele, you can create personalized techniques to communicate how you will address distinct pain points.
Making Everything About You
Sure, it’s crucial to talk about your products or services and your unique selling propositions (USPs). It also wouldn’t hurt to boast about your superior support services. However, you can provide potential customers with other valuable information, such as:
- The ROI you provide existing clients
- How your product or service will impact their bottom line
- Trial periods and inclusions
While your prospects want to hear about what sets you apart from the sea of competition, they also want to know how supporting your brand can benefit them.
Using Too Much Jargon
We get it; it’s hard to find counterparts for terms like agile, bandwidth, and frictionless. It’s okay to use them once in a while, when necessary. However, it’s time to stop overusing them to the point that your clients don’t understand what you want to say.
When creating content, from landing pages to blogs to e-books, make sure you share information without sounding like a robot. Think of your clients and do your best to speak in a language they understand.
Best B2B Marketing Strategies for 2022
So far, we’ve discussed what B2B marketing is, how it differs from B2C marketing, and the practices you should avoid. It’s now time to talk about the best B2B marketing strategies for 2022.
We’ve gathered five of the most cost-effective game changers you can use with your existing tactics.
1. Cold Email Outreach
Cold email outreach is one of the latest outbound marketing techniques experts use. It involves building a potential client list not connected with your business yet and contacting them via email. The goal of cold email outreach is not to sell but to grab the attention of decision-makers.
Any such strategy requires an email template. Here are a few pro tips to producing your own:
- Write short, catchy subject lines.
- Personalize all the parts that you can, such as names and job titles.
- Keep introductory emails between 50 – 100 words.
- End with a single actionable call to action (CTA).
2. Geofencing Industry Conferences and Competitor Locations
Geofencing is the process of using Global Positioning System (GPS) and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technologies to create virtual boundaries. These programs enable triggers when mobile devices enter or leave a particular area.
With geofencing, you can develop cost-effective hyper-targeted mobile ads to reach a local market. This strategy is ideal for startups and growing businesses that don’t have massive marketing budgets.
3. Content Marketing and SEO
Digital marketing statistics reveal that the average American sees anywhere between 6,000 – 10,000 ads daily. For this reason, content marketing — developing valuable online material for a specific market — has become the gold standard for B2B marketing.
Check out Old Spice’s YouTube page for inspiration. While it’s a B2C brand, it’s still a treasure trove of groundbreaking materials. Instead of repeatedly discussing ingredients, scents, and availability, Old Spice creates captivating videos that keep viewers wanting more.
Developing a content marketing strategy has many benefits, including enhanced search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, improved authority, and increased social media engagement.
4. CRM and Omnichannel Lead Nurturing To Qualify and Book Appointments
You can use two strategies to qualify and book appointments: customer relationship management (CRM) and omnichannel lead nurturing.
A CRM system enables B2B businesses to increase leads, boost efficiency, and make data-driven decisions. With the right tools on your side, you can understand, segment, and communicate with customers better.
When companies start growing, many of them have top and bottom funnels down pat. Too often, they don’t give much thought to the mid-funnel or the lead nurturing phase. If you want to bridge the gap between vanity metrics and actual sales, use omnichannel lead nurturing strategies.
5. Reputation Management
Reputation management refers to practices that involve influencing how people think about a brand using external brand factors, including the following:
- Building influencer relationships
- Managing online reviews
- Developing public relations (PR) campaigns
As a small company, you can apply these strategies online. If you’re wondering if it’s worth it, check out these online reputation management figures:
- A whopping 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from relatives and friends.
- On the flip side, negative reviews stop individuals from trying a product or service.
- On average, consumers read seven reviews before trusting a brand.
Take Your B2B Business to the Next Level
Many B2B businesses fail to reach new heights because they don’t use the ideal B2B marketing strategies. While they share similarities with B2C marketing, remember that they are two distinct techniques.
As a B2B organization, it’s essential to know your clients and communicate how you address pain points without using too much jargon. Additionally, there are new groundbreaking tactics you can use even without massive budgets.
If you need help achieving your 2022 goals, it’s time to use B2B marketing strategies that work. Learning and mastering such skills could take years, so it’s best to work with professionals.
Schedule a discovery call now to start working with the best B2B marketers in Austin. Our experienced specialists can develop customized strategies to provide you with the marketing prowess you need to scale.