It seems there are as many B2B Marketing systems as there are businesses. Even when only looking at significant players delivering credible results, the options are bewildering. The increase in content marketing and online lead generation services that are available has increased the complexity of the landscape. There are many excellent solutions available, but the boom in B2B Marketing, particularly online, has resulted in some loss of perspective. Companies relying on data-crunching lead generation services are often failing to see that the forest is made up of trees, (yes that’s deliberate) and forgetting…
People make decisions
It seems obvious, but many marketers, and growing businesses think of B2B Marketing outside this context. Companies don’t make decisions – the people within companies do. In fact, often the decision-maker you should care about is a single person. Here are some ways your company can ensure that your B2B Marketing efforts effectively target and message the right people.
Provide personal value
Your product or service has to deliver results for the businesses you’re selling to and that promise has to be communicated in your marketing. However, understanding how engaging with your brand specifically impacts those making the purchase decision is critical. Ask yourself:
- What role does this person play in the organization? Often the target of your marketing will not be the one directly using your product.
- How does my brand directly impact this person? Are you going to make their work life easier, make them look good to the boss, increase their success, meet their individual business objectives?
Identify gatekeepers and influencers
A strong B2B Marketing initiative should start with a consumer segmentation process. Identifying the people who are going to help you make a sale is crucial. This is where many approaches fail. Directly targeting companies or departments that will ultimately benefit from your product is not always the most effective channel. Third parties, such as accounting and other professional firms and operations or finance departments are often key to the decision process.
A detailed process of segmentation, profiling, targeting and measurement will increase your ROI by identifying people that will help you sell in.
Engage the person within the business
Using these lessons, businesses can ensure that their customer relationship management process addresses the needs and motivations of the people that ultimately control your destiny. Your brand lives in their minds and so your engagement with them must deliver a personalized benefit. The best B2B product in the world will still have a challenge if the experience of the people that interact with it and you is not positive.
More and more businesses are turning to marketing programs (particularly content marketing) to address the need to be top of mind when customers make purchase decisions. The more unpredictable that sales window, the more important these tactics become. Ensuring that your marketing program speaks to the right people in the right way will pay dividends and can support your sales efforts with a strong foundation, good leads and useful market data.