Over the years marketing generally has dawned several hats at various times to cater to the needs of the hour. Today’s business arena is humanistic. A company with a human marketing approach wins. A few concerning issues need immediate attention, such as the lackadaisical state of branding and neglecting the potential of audience research. To be human is to err. There are certain timeless errors or sins that continue to plague B2B Marketing and need to be avoided while developing a marketing strategy.
Branding can’t be limited to only B2C. The notion of branding being essential to just non-business audiences couldn’t have been further from the truth. Creating a strong brand means positioning your company so that when a problem arises, you are the obvious choice. Building a strong bond with your current and potential customers through brand identity, voice and emotional branding is the way to go. Consistency is essential. Branding is not an instantaneous process, so a steady investment is the best thing you can do for your B2B brand. The more you relate to your customer's feelings, emotions, and needs, the more customer-centric your brand can be. Here is an example of branding done right.
Salesforce makes use of the brilliant marketing strategy of storytelling. Salesforce publishes the stories of customers that have used Salesforce to expand their businesses on its Customer Success Stories page. The idea behind this strategy is that prospects who have come across positive customer success content are more likely to get converted and claim it heavily influenced their purchasing decision. All you have to do is get in touch with your top customers and request them to talk about their success and your role in their journey.
Failing to Understand the Audience
Understanding your audience is beneficial in your marketing, advertising, sales, product development, and even service departments because the better you know your audience, the better you can satisfy their needs. Businesses as your target audience also need individual effective marketing measures that could motivate them to choose your brand's products/services. If you don't understand your target audience, all your marketing efforts will go to waste. Collect data and create a comprehensive profile of your target audience. Once you understand your audience, you can create a strategy to reach them easily.
Creating an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) is a great place to start. An ICP is an extensive combination of patterns, information, and features of your best customers. Analyze all the data you have collected and use the same conditions while searching for prospects as it is easier to satisfy customers whose needs match the services that you provide.
Overlooking Website UI
We live in a digital age, and not investing in resources to develop your website, could be a costly mistake. A fancy website may not be a priority, but be careful with the design and content. Your overall user experience in addition to your service or product will let you through the door. Whether it's a mobile app or your website, focusing on a smooth, user-friendly, and responsive design is necessary for a competent user experience.
Give your user the power. Let’s talk about pop-ups here for a second. They can be annoying, to say the least. They can come across as pushy and repel the prospects. Pop-ups do work when done right. Provide the user with the choice to reject the offer. It has been offered this leading to an increase in the quality of the surveys as the responses are likely to be genuine. Grainger, an industrial supply company has a website that clearly provides the visitor with the “No Thanks” option below the “Join” CTA option. This can be considered thoughtful by the visitors and will add to their experience.
Using Big Words
Content marketing such as a company blog, and weekly newsletters are indispensable to B2B brands. Using unnecessary terms to sound more authoritative and professional to the target audience can backfire. No matter how useful and valuable the content is, using complex terms to communicate with your audience hurts your development. Research thoroughly what content your audience prefers and create accordingly. It always helps to keep in mind their technical knowledge and understanding of the subject. Be sure to ask your audience for lots of feedback after they've seen or interacted with the content you've posted.
Using the language that your audience is familiar with is one way to win them over. Eliminate the technical jargon. The language and tone are best heard from the buyer's mouth. Pay attention to what your customers are saying. Techport Thirteen started out with terms such as “…our employees have been expertly applying their wealth of experience to our clients”; “a diverse set of client experiences…” that weren’t favorable.
After research, the language was significantly changed for their value proposition to explain what they do and why their clients choose them.
Company Centric Communication
Most business communication is crafted with the false belief that the audience cares about the company. To succeed in the B2B space, you need to demonstrate that your company is an expert in its field. Yes, your information is important, but only in relevant areas. Get on their level. Be helpful and solve their problems first before you go off about yourself. Ultimately, great marketing focuses on how your solutions improve the lives of your customers.
The idea is to keep it to the point. Rambling on about your company is rude and disinteresting. Focus on the customers’ needs and your role. Introduce your company later in just two to three lines unlike what you shouldn’t do as demonstrated above. Taking up more space than required to present your company discourages your prospects from continuing on.
Data and Analytics
It is difficult to measure the impact of a brand in the long term. Data may show that search or direct traffic are the main sources of leads, but in reality, these people discovered your brand through social media and communities. Analytics tools are a way to track and measure a brand's performance over time. Whether it's website conversions, newsletter subscriptions, or even the number of visitors who sign up for a demo call, analytics is vital to your marketing strategy. Choosing the right analytics software based on your brand's needs is just as important, and the only way to do that is to do a lot of research about your options.
The right software caters to all your needs, giving you insights on revenue, number of employees, and location. UpLead is one such data enhancement software that is capable of putting together a relevant list of prospects.
Sales and Marketing
Cooperation and mutual respect between the sales and marketing teams must be the goal. B2B marketing is about educating and raising awareness about buyer problems and your company's solutions. Done right, B2B marketing makes the sales process easier and helps shorten the sales cycle. For this to happen, all of your marketing plans must be in line with your organization's revenue goals. It is the sales team’s turn to convert your prospects after they have been acquired by the marketing team.
According to LinkedIn’s 2022 State of Sales report, 70% of the highest-performing sales professionals acknowledged their marketing leads as “excellent” and put in efforts to understand the customer journey and what content the target audience is resonating with.