Buyers are changing, and their journey towards making a purchase is changing with them. If your organization isn't evolving its marketing department to match, you'll be missing out, not just on potential customers, but on growing your business in 2018.The issue, for many B2B organizations, is they are hanging on to a once-successful traditional marketing department that is no longer sufficient. But, as children's author Lemony Snicket wrote, "Just because something is traditional is no reason to do it, of course. Piracy, for example, is a tradition that has been carried on for hundreds of years, but that doesn't mean we should all attack ships and steal their gold."
Modern businesses in need of a service are going about finding that service in a different way than they ever have before. This is particularly relevant if your B2B organization is selling a product or service that is technical or complex. Your clients are certainly not going to be sold using a television advertisement or a cold call. In fact, even traditional inbound marketing will not always work for customers with such specific needs.
The Solution: B2B Marketing Technology
So what does your B2B technology organization need to do to find customers in the modern marketing world? First of all, the marketing department needs to contain several interconnected aspects. These can include, Comms and PR, Integrated Marketing, Demand and Gen Operations, Channel Marketing, and Insights and Analytics.
It is through Demand and Gen Operations that you will be following the modern buyer's journey to find your product or service. This buyer's journey is in three steps: Awareness, Consideration, and Decision.
As your buyers make their way through these steps, your marketing will move with them from Inbound (and Outbound depending on your target customer) marketing to web management and strategy, to lead management. It seems like a lot, and it can be, but if you focus on key marketing elements, they will enable you to move through the buyer's journey efficiently. And of course, the payoff of gaining more customers for your B2B organization will be worth the effort.
What to Focus on: Marketing strategy
The first enabler you'll need to focus on is content. Content marketing is an integral part of your Inbound Marketing strategy, and while it might seem straightforward, the Content Marketing Institute reported last year that almost 3 in 4 B2B marketers still don't believe their organizations are effective at content marketing. Have a look through our blog archives for more information on effective content marketing.
Another enabler is Brand, Creative, and UX (user experience design). Of course, branding to fit your target market is important. That's why you have to know your potential buyer's personas and their buyer's journey inside and out. You also have to make sure your website and other marketing tools are optimized for user experience. A hard-to-navigate site can turn a potential buyer off of a business, even if the product or service was right for them.
Martech or Marketing Technology is an essential role to fill to be successful with using marketing for growing your business. As we all know, the digital world is constantly evolving and growing, and marketing technology is growing with it. Integrating the latest technologies with your marketing strategy will not only make things simpler for you, but it will increase the effectiveness of your B2B marketing.
Growing Your Business in 2018
Finally, Data and Analytics is another enabler to understanding the buyer's journey. With analytics, you'll be able to know what parts of your marketing your customers are responding to and keep up with that as opposed to the things that aren't.
The Flawless Inbound team has worked with over 35 B2B organizations in Canada and the U.S., and we are dedicated to keeping up to date with the latest and greatest in marketing strategies, trends, and ideas. Contact us for a Discovery Call today to see how we can help your B2B organization.