Business to business marketing, or B2B, can seem like just an extension of regular marketing. The same principles of marketing should apply. The only difference is the type of product being sold supports a business selling its wares to consumers, and the business client is probably more savvy about what’s involved so the selling requires more technical knowledge for successful pitching. However, there are other aspects that businesses need to pay attention to so as to enjoy better results from their marketing efforts.
Trend 1 – Focus on Targeted Marketing
Too often businesses throw themselves out in campaigns to just anyone on the hope that other businesses seeing an ad will just pick up the phone and call for orders. Unfortunately, businesses can be just as finicky about ordering services and products as regular consumers. The continual blanketing approach just wastes a lot of money and ad space most of the time.
Instead, businesses need to put their efforts into targeted marketing, going after those business clients who definitively have a need for particular service or product and more likely to consummate an order. This saves resources towards efforts that produce better results, and connects with better leads.
Trend 2 – Ignore the Click Metrics, Focus on Dollars
Businesses live and die on their revenue. Lots of Internet clicks to a website or marketing effort can sound really good, but if they don’t translate to sales, what’s the point? Marketing efforts need to produce, just like any other aspect of a business. There needs to be a realized connection within a set time window that a marketing effort has produce real results. Otherwise, it’s just a waste of money.
Trend 3 – Don’t Forget Price
B2B marketing has to address the price factor. Client businesses are regularly trying to keep their operating costs down. So they don’t need a Cadillac product. They need one that works and is cheaper than other options. B2B marketing still has to include the cost factor and make it attractive, either in a way that reduces long-term purchasing with better quality or reduces short-term cost with a lower price.
Trend 4 – Back to Bidding
Online auction platforms provide a consolidation of businesses to businesses in a targeted manner. While an auction approach obviously increases price competition, it also allows a business to show its stuff to a targeted client versus just an unknown party. This is because auction buyers have to describe what they need adequately for a bid to work. The information game shifts to the bidder versus the buyer. The buyer then only controls the winning price or winning bid that best matches the defined need.
Trend 5 – Don’t Ignore the Power of Email
It seems a bit old-fashioned now, but targeted email marketing still works. Why? If a client already has a need, emails marketing solutions for that need resonate. The challenge, however, is for the B2B marketing to know what the given client need is in the first place. That takes research which means B2B marketers need to study their clients and find their areas that are receptive to offers. That research can be in the form of identifying new client issues from their quarterly reports to talking with their buyers and figuring out what the top needs list is this month for a company versus last month. In short, good sleuthing provides material for targeted emails providing good alternatives to a client.
Again, it’s important to remember in B2B marketing that businesses don’t behave exactly like regular consumers. They have a better product or service knowledge, and their priorities can be markedly different. Paying attention to these details as well as focused efforts on receptive business parties and revenue will pay dividends for commercial marketers.