A solid marketing strategy is crucial to business growth, regardless of whether you are marketing to a broad audience or consumers, or a narrow specialized market of industry buyers.
If you are in the latter category, you have likely already experienced the struggles that accompany attempts to create successful, highly-converting B2B marketing strategies when you have little, to no professional marketing experience.
This is an all too common frustration for many business owners who must figure out how to market their specialized product or service to a relatively small target audience. To add an additional hurdle, because that target audience is often other business owners, or industry professionals, their time and attention span may be limited, so it is crucial that your B2B marketing strategies hit the mark every time.
In this post we will share four crucial steps to build the most effective B2B marketing strategies for your business.
Step 1: Perform a Comprehensive B2B Marketing Audit
“You can't formulate a plan without knowing where you want to go. Defining trackable goals allows you to measure your efforts and success.” -Krista, VP, Client Experience & Co-founder
It really can’t be overstated. It is crucial that you spend some time and effort taking stock of how your current B2B marketing strategies are performing, and the core areas where you would like to see improvement.
Dig deep to discover where your current B2B marketing strategies have generated the most return on investment, and where they have fallen flat. Look at the details of both your successful campaigns, and your lackluster ones. What type of content, or media seemed to resonate most with your ideal target audience? Which messaging garnered the most responses, and which did not? Of those responses, or interactions, how many resulted in successful conversions?
Analyze a broad range of metrics to get a well-rounded picture of what is currently working well, and where a course correction is needed.
Step 2: Establish Concrete B2B Marketing Goals
Now that you have evaluated the strengths and weaknesses of your current B2B marketing strategies, you need to spend some time developing concrete goals for what you would like your revamped B2B marketing plan to produce.
These goals should be tangible, and most importantly, measurable. Goals that are too broad, or general in scope will be difficult to track. If you are unable to track your progress towards your goals, how will you know when you have reached them?
Establish key performance indicators (KPIs), and other goal oriented metrics to help you stay on top of the progress, and direction of your B2B marketing campaign efforts. These KPIs should be easy to track, and provide clear, and timely insight into what is, or is not working.
Remember, the sooner you are able to discern a problem with one or more aspects of your B2B marketing strategies, the quicker you will be able to pivot to a more successful tactic, which will save you money, time, and frustration in the long run.
Step 3: Develop a Clear B2B Marketing Strategy
Before you jump into your new B2B marketing strategies with both feet, take some time to dip your toes in the water by conducting some preliminary research to help you develop a solid B2B marketing plan that will generate the greatest return on your investment.
Take time to brainstorm a list of core themes, and topics that are directly relevant to your industry, and the target audience that you are attempting to connect with. You may consider what pain points the target audience currently faces, and how your product or service could help to alleviate those challenges.
Once you have your list of themes, and topics nailed down, perform a round or two of keyword research to determine the most high-intent keywords that are most likely to be searched by one of your target audience members when they are seeking information about, or solutions for a particular challenge directly related to your core topic areas.
Use what you have learned through your research to create highly relevant content, and messaging. Make use of marketing tools, like content calendars, and analytic tools to help you track engagement with topics, so that you can plan your next outreach efforts to best capitalize on any momentum generated by intense interest in a specific topic area.
Finally, take a close look at what your closest competitors are doing. Competitor research is a great way to get a quick view of what B2B marketing strategies play well with the specific target audience within your industry, and which have fallen flat. Learning from the successes, and mistakes of your competitors gives you a valuable head start in building your own successful B2B marketing campaign.
Step 4: Prioritize B2B Marketing Efforts
Now that you have done the heavy lifting to evaluate your current B2B marketing campaigns, establish concrete marketing goals, and construct more effective B2B strategies, you will need to buckle down and commit yourself to executing your new B2B marketing plan.
When you reach this stage, it is natural to want to see immediate returns on your efforts. The reality is that even the best B2B marketing strategies may take a bit of time to start generating solid results.
You can set yourself up for success by taking the time to prioritize your marketing efforts right from the start. Launch the most low cost, low effort, high return aspects of your new B2B marketing campaign first. Let these high return marketing efforts create momentum and buzz that will help carry you through the more labor intensive, or time consuming portions of your marketing plan.
For example you may start with a simple social media campaign involving a series of infographics, or promotional posts on industry boards or forums. These posts can direct to high-value, information packed evergreen content posted on your business blog, or on third-party publishing sites related to your specific industry. Allow this content to generate passive word of mouth interest for your business while you work on developing more direct, interactive, personal marketing efforts.
Use your marketing content calendar to produce a steady stream of evergreen content that can be released at regularly scheduled intervals to keep the interest flowing, and continue to produce a steady stream of warm leads which you can build upon with your more targeted B2B marketing efforts.
Prioritizing your B2B marketing strategies in this way allows you to focus your greatest time and attention on the direct interactions with the well-qualified leads that are most likely to convert.
Ready To Build More Effective B2B Marketing Strategies?
If you are ready to get serious about creating effective B2B marketing strategies that convert into real world sales, click here to download your copy of Magnetic Marketing for Manufacturers to learn how you can master the art of B2B marketing regardless of your level of marketing experience.
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