B2B Marketing Strategy

Forbes recently reported that the B2B digital marketing industry alone will earn $15 billion in the USA in 2023. That being said, creating a B2B marketing strategy is a game of understanding your audience’s needs and demands, more than anything else. 

B2B marketing is not a market that is geared towards the common consumer. Therefore, your marketing strategy is bound to differ in many ways as compared to B2C marketing strategies.

B2B essentially abbreviates the term ‘business to business.’ That means you primarily want a marketing strategy that reaches other businesses that want what you have to offer. However, the absence of a private clientele does not mean your marketing strategy should be drab. 

So, with that cleared, let’s move on to the leitmotif of this blog. How to create a B2B marketing strategy? Find your answer below!

What is a B2B Marketing Strategy and How Does it Differ From B2C Marketing Strategies?

How is B2B Strategy different from B2C Strategy

To begin with, B2B marketing strategies stand for business-to-business marketing strategies. Therefore, as an entity engaging in B2B marketing, your clientele would be limited to other businesses or corporate entities. 

Therefore, B2B forms the first level of any market in the world. Consider a simple item like a plastic toy. At the highest B2B level, a seller will provide the equipment and raw material to the manufacturer of the toy. 

Once the manufacturer has manufactured the toy, he will sell it to a retailer. The retailer will then sell the toys to individual consumers. This is the final level where the product goes from a business to a consumer (B2C).

In essence, B2C businesses sell to individual consumers. As a result, certain metrics of performance are fractions compared to those in B2B marketing. For instance, a B2B marketing plan aims to target a lower volume order for a higher cost. In stark contrast, a B2C marketing plan roots for high-volume outputs at a lower cost. 

Moreover, B2B marketing works on a highly personal level where the seller’s services and products are customised to meet the buyer’s requirements. 

B2B Products and Services

Here are some examples of products and services that typically transact on a B2B basis:

  • Heavy-duty machinery is leased out to construction companies on a project-to-project basis.
  • Supply chain software and database management is a service marketed to large e-commerce corporations.
  • Raw materials are sold to food manufacturing factories.
  • Digital marketing strategies are sold from a digital marketing business to a business that wishes to market itself. 

These are only a few of the many services in the B2B realm. Without an effective B2B marketing strategy, your business is unlikely to reach its target audience. If you don’t have an audience, you don’t have a market for your product. 

Having said that, this article can be a stepping stone for your organisation’s marketing goals. Take a cue from this article on how you can create a B2B marketing strategy that works for you. 

Read More: Elements of a good B2B Email Marketing Campaign

Creating a B2B Marketing Strategy

Creating B2B Marketing Strategy

Having established what B2B marketing is, let’s move on to creating the perfect B2B marketing plan. 

There are broadly 5 aspects to creating a marketing strategy. 

1. Defining Your Brand’s Identity and Product

The first step to selling your product to another business is to determine precisely what your company represents. This is also commonly referred to as brand positioning. Creating a mission statement of sorts can assist your employees to align themselves with your business philosophy. 

Once your brand’s identity is set in stone, you must determine your product. When referring to a product, we also mean any services your business provides. 

If your organisation specialises in top-tier industrial machinery, your product would be industrial machinery. 

Most companies in the B2B segment focus on selling a niche product. Only when a company has immense resources and capital, it deals in multiple product markets. 

2. Defining Your Product’s Target Audience

Next, you will need to establish a market segment that is interested in your product. This will naturally depend on the particular service or product that your organisation deals in. While this may seem like a superfluity, establishing a target audience can cut down on meaningless and expensive marketing campaigns. 

In fact, it will also allow your organisation to redouble its marketing efforts toward the businesses that want your product. Furthermore, in researching your target audience, you will also discover their modus operandi in buying similar products. 

Based on this information, you can position your services in the appropriate cost brackets to create value for your clients.

3. Understanding Your Market’s Competition

In almost every market, your product only needs to be better than the competition to succeed. Therefore, when we talk about creating value for your clientele, it is relative to the value your competition can create. 

Therefore, research your competition. Understand their strategies and services and factor these into your marketing strategy. This analysis is also known as SWOT analysis. Your objective is fairly straightforward. You must uncover your competition’s strengths (S), weaknesses (W), opportunities (O), and threats (T) and plan with reference to them. 

4. Integration of Varied Marketing Channels

In today’s world of dog-eat-dog competition, one marketing channel is likely to be ineffective. Therefore, you must rely on various marketing channels that integrate various modes of communication. 

Targeting multiple forms of marketing, both online and offline can also help you network with potential clients. This is known as lead generation. Lead generation is crucial in building your base of clientele and further improving your services and products. 

Your marketing strategies will depend on 3 factors. 

  • Visibility of a particular marketing channel, 
  • Pros and cons of the channels you wish to integrate, 
  • Feasibility of integration of all these channels.
  • Analyse and Improve Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Your marketing strategy’s success and failure ultimately depend on its KPIs. In oversimplified terms, these are metrics that indicate whether your marketing strategies are working or not. 

Examples of reliable KPIs would include the following. 

  • Cost of acquiring new clientele 
  • Web traffic
  • Monthly recurring revenue from existing clientele
  • Conversion rates are calculated from the point of lead generation to the completion of a deal
  • Sale cycle average 

A detailed analysis of your KPIs can lead to the discovery of the strengths and weaknesses of your strategy. You can then recalibrate your strategy and improve it by addressing the existing deficiencies. 

A Little About Marketing Channels

As we mentioned above, marketing channels are your best shot at targeting a particular market. Typically, you would use marketing channels to bolster your B2B digital marketing strategies. Finally, the successful integration of multiple marketing channels will guarantee your reach across a wide cross-section of potential clientele. 

Essential channels that you must include in your overall B2B marketing strategy are listed below. 

Business Website

Your business’ website is a pivotal channel of communication with prospective customers. It is also the place where your customers will develop a first impression of your organisation. 

Even though statistics show that websites only lead to roughly 2.2% of conversions, they are not your ultimate goal. Rather, the ultimate goal when building a website should be to establish a commanding online presence and offer a focal point of information about your product to consumers. 

Therefore, investing in a fluid and informative website is of utmost importance as far as building your brand’s identity is concerned. 

Email Marketing

Emails are one of the most powerful tools in the world of B2B and B2C marketing. Email communication gives you a way to reach out to potential clients directly. It’s the digital equivalent of making a phone call to check in on your clients. 

Another advantage of email marketing is that it can easily be automated and customised to appeal to different clients. Email marketing is also cost-effective when compared to other channels, and offers a healthy return on investment.

Social Media Marketing

Now, the majority of social media marketing is optimal for B2C marketing strategies. However, when executed effectively, it does offer a few effective options for B2B marketing campaigns too. 

For example, Instagram would not be an efficient marketing channel. However, LinkedIn would be one because of the large number of businesses using it. The litmus test of quality social media content would be how informative it is. 

Unlike B2C campaigns, B2B campaigns need to focus on the value-addition and functionality of their products. 

Final Words

The cliche of the future belonging to AI holds true even in the world of B2B digital marketing strategies. All businesses can now leverage the introduction of AI and ML-based CRM and workflow software. 

Deploying them effectively for marketing channels such as email can lead to major savings. They can also boost productivity by allowing employees to focus on the creative aspect of the job. 

Therefore, we believe that inculcating this software in B2B marketing strategies would be extremely beneficial. Ultimately, the path to corporate growth goes through the forest that is your network. Being able to communicate with your potential market is the only way to sell them your product. The best way to sell your product is by leveraging B2B marketing strategies that perform.