How to use B2B Marketing Techniques to win Customer Attention

Posted by frank harris on 14/02/19 10:23

How do you increase customer engagement?

customer engagementEveryone in B2B marketing is competing to capture the attention of our best prospects and customers, and that’s not easy. We’re bombarded daily with information from all sides and individually choose to let in what we care about in the moment and block out anything that just creates overload.

 

With research and buying habits from our personal lives influencing our professional lives, there’s a battle for attention that’s getting tougher to fight every day. Just like we disregard a commercial on TV or an ad in a magazine due to its lack of relevance to us, we also block out communications from brands that don’t resonate or address challenges we’re facing.

 

Engagement is the new currency in B2B marketing. When we can capture and hold the attention of our personas, we have a real opportunity to nurture and mature our relationships.

 

Here are four things to consider when trying to build trust with your audience:

  1. Focus your efforts on those you want to engage

The notion of mass communication has been proven to reduce engagement and ultimately dilute performance. Getting people to read your latest eBook or visit your website is fine, but if none of them have the potential to turn into customers, have you really achieved anything?

 

A better way is to get specific with whom you want to reach. An Account-Based Marketing (ABM) strategy can help focus your efforts on personas that have the highest propensity to engage with your message and turn prospects into customers at a higher rate.

  1. Target for engagement

To target for engagement, you first need to build a target account list involving your sales team. In doing so, you should answer these questions:

  • What companies are most important to achieving your revenue for the year?
  • Who are the 20% that are going to drive 80% of your results?

You can take a few different approaches to build this list: Engage a predictive analytics company; identify the vertical industries the sales and marketing teams are already targeting; or understand how strategic accounts are included in your target account list.

 

Whatever path or combination of paths you choose, you need to collaborate with your sales team and ensure they provide insight on the list based on their experience in the field.

 

Once you have your target account list, begin marketing to these accounts to increase your awareness among them. You can’t control when those accounts will evaluate solutions like yours, but you can make sure that you are top of mind when they do and that you deliver relevant, contextual content that keeps them engaged and helps throughout their journey.

 

Consider continuous campaigns that will keep you in the game but reduce waste through specific targeting.

  1. Measure by engagement

Most marketers want to focus on an attribution model that shows revenue optimising for channel and assets - and that’s a good thing. But don’t lose sight on indicators that can provide key insights into what drives that attribution.

 

Before you begin your engagement-focused campaigns, take a benchmark for 30 days to understand how your accounts are currently engaging with your campaigns. This will be imperative to understanding the impact of your marketing on those accounts.

 

Then, as your campaigns launch and complete, measure the engagement you achieved with your target accounts. The accounts that increased the most represent the lowest-hanging fruit for deeper-funnel campaigns that drive those directly attributed results.

  1. Enable sales to identify and act on engagement

Around 80% of website visitors aren’t from accounts that are likely to buy your solutions. So, focus on what matters most to the ones in the 20% - accounts that are engaged and most likely to turn into sales opportunities.

 

When there are spikes in engagement from an important audience, capitalise on and convert that engagement into business results. This can be easy to do when you have known people in your database, but it proves trickier when those triggers are anonymous.

 

It’s critical to be able to identify both types of spikes and supply sales with the intelligence they need to get ahead of the competition.

 

Leads alone are no longer adequate for your business. With limited attention spans, we must be able to drive deeper engagement with our target accounts and turn that engagement into actionable insights.

Then, we can determine our campaign performance and enable sales teams to act. Engagement - through relevance, timing and enablement - is how we will deliver the best results.

 

For more on best practices in B2B marketing for small businesses just follow the link below>>>

 

A Guide to B2B Website Marketing  for Small Businesses

Tags: b2b marketing, b2b customer leads, behavioural marketing, b2b customer experience, b2b marketing tips, b2b web personalisation, b2b behavioural marketing, b2b integrated marketing

How to increase your B2B social media marketing success rates in 2019

Posted by frank harris on 31/01/19 16:22

social media marketing 010219Over the past year fraud concerns surrounding B2B social media marketing have come to the fore.

 

Some studies estimate that up to 90% of B2B companies are allocating more money in social media marketing, despite this, in an effort to better identify and reach their audiences. According to eMarketer, this investment is paying off. The majority of these brands reported that they closed at least one deal recently because of their presence on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. 

 

Social media can and should still play a vital role in B2B marketing going forward.

Social is a Natural Fit

Though social media marketing may seem better suited to B2C companies, there are three main reasons why it’s plenty viable in a B2B context.

 

The first reason is that social profiles are created by individual consumers themselves. Rather than play the guessing game, brands have access to rich, accurate hard data regarding the names, ages, genders, interests, and (most importantly) occupations of their personas. They can use this information to seek professionals whose brands would benefit from their services and develop targeted messages that speak directly to their needs.

 

The second is that B2B social media marketing yields much higher engagement rates than display advertising. It offers an excellent content distribution format that makes it easy for an audience to interact with and share brands’ posts. Ultimately, this provides a powerful amount of word of mouth for the companies that get it right.

 

The last reason is that it doesn’t take a lot of time or effort to begin seeing results. According to Social Media Examiner, 78% of marketers reported a boost in traffic after investing just six hours a week in social strategies. 

 

However, it’s not as simple as developing a few Facebook posts or scheduling a few tweets. If you want to execute campaigns that drive serious ROI, you need to focus on a strategic setup and constant optimisation.

Achieving B2B Social Media Marketing Success

Many brands fail to implement conversion tracking for their social advertising initiatives. Elements such as lead form completion and on-site video views enable campaign managers to optimise for the best results, so it’s important to build these into your strategies.

 

B2B marketers also make the mistake of defaulting to LinkedIn exclusively for social strategies, isolating themselves from more lucrative opportunities. Thanks to its targeting capabilities, Facebook offers greater reach to almost every B2B audience. In fact, B2B campaigns that centre on Facebook often outperform similar ones on other channels.

 

When you get involved in social campaigns, it’s easy to get hung up on these types of pitfalls. Avoid them by keeping the following best practices in mind when building your social strategy:

  1. Target a specific audience.

Marketing messages are most effective when they reach the right people. Gather all of the first-party data available on your personas, and integrate that information into your social advertising. Some platforms offer tools to help you organise custom audiences. For instance, Facebook lets you use converter data, CRM lists, and email databases to put your content in front of your intended viewers.

  1. Customise your content.

Reaching the right people is one thing but resonating with them is another. Create materials that match your personas’ interests, values, and needs. If you’re targeting a diverse group of personalities, segment them and develop campaigns for each cluster. Custom messaging will yield higher engagement and more conversions than generic mass-appeal posts.

  1. Align your campaign channels with your goals.

Clearly define your campaign objectives, and then identify which platforms and formats will help you achieve them. Be aware of audience preferences as well. For example, according to Adweek, Millennials tend to prefer 10-second video ads while older generations favour 30-second commercials. That’s an important distinction to make when developing content. Establishing goals at the outset will dictate which platforms and types of content will earn the best results.

  1. Be strategic in your scheduling.

Select your attribution window for conversions, and share content consistently across social channels to see where you’re getting the highest ROI. If your business runs on a long sales cycle, you may want to use a 28-day window instead of a one- or seven-day measurement. Analysing the entire purchase cycle will help you nurture leads and improve your social funnel.

  1. Track your results.

Verify that your pixels and conversion tracking systems work correctly before you launch your campaign.

 

Functional tracking lets you see which aspects of the initiative work best so you can optimise around the most valuable actions. You want to focus on these priority items instead of clicks or other vanity metrics.

 

B2B decision makers are busy, and they respond best when messages reach them in trusted environments and resonate with their circumstances. That’s what makes well-planned social media campaigns invaluable to B2B marketers. They allow you to connect with people in relevant, engaging ways on the platforms they love. Your potential B2B customers are spoon-feeding you all the data you need through social media channels; it’s up to you to take them up on that invitation.

 

For more ideas on B2B social media marketing check out the link below>>>

 

Nurturing Leads in  Small Business Marketing 

Tags: B2B lead generation, b2b website marketing, social media marketing, b2b social media marketing, b2b marketing tips, b2b behavioural marketing, integrated b2b marketing

Three Reasons to use B2B Integrated Marketing in 2019

Posted by frank harris on 20/01/19 16:13

integrated-marketing-communicationsDo you understand integrated  B2B marketing?

 

We are all familiar with the chaos of the modern consumer journey and rising consumer expectations for personalisation and convenience. There’s more content than ever and there are more touchpoints than ever. According to BuzzSumo’s 2018 Content Trends Report, only 50% of all content gained 4 shares or more across all main social networks - half of what it was in 2015.

 

And we often blame this shifting and fragmented media landscape for:

But the reality is that we must look inwards to understand how those of us in small business B2B marketing, may be contributing to marketing’s ineffectiveness. 

 

Here are three reasons to make building integrated marketing a priority in 2019.

  1. Your B2B marketing looks inefficient and misaligned

Do the points above sound familiar? A lot of these common B2B marketing challenges stem from lack of alignment and governance. And 65% of the content that marketing teams produce is wasted. SiriusDecisions has found that 60-70% of content goes unused in B2B companies, representing a large amount of waste

  1. Customers don’t care about your silos

Remove marketing silos once and for all, especially the segregation of “content marketing” from the rest of your marketing. Content touches every department: from PR to social to TV to digital. It has become a company’s business asset, IP and product all in one; despite this, we’re still pursuing separate agendas, metrics and technical operations. 

 

The siloed nature of some B2B SMEs makes it difficult to create a cohesive experience for customers.

Digital marketing fragmented not only the agency landscape but also the marketing function. Now, it’s time to reclaim unified oversight with content operations. According to the SiriusDecisions State of B2B Content Study, only 14% of companies rate themselves as advanced in operations. Effective operations mean increased collaboration across departments and functions, integrated planning, transparency across teams, and a shared vision for what success looks like. Technology can help build a robust operations function when there are the right champions and strategies in place behind it.

  1. We’re contributing to the internet version of noise pollution

Content is overwhelming us all, and it’s being churned out by brands and polluting our working environment.

 

So, stop creating content without a clear why. According to the ANA, only 25% of CMOs’ digital media investment reaches target audiences,” representing “more than $20 billion of marketing waste.

 

Content waste is defined as an investment in content that has no strategic purpose or business impact, offers little value to the customer, was poorly executed, or was duplicative.  

 

What’s causing this lack of strategy and waste? The most obvious answer is a lack of visibility resulting in content duplication, an inability to combine campaign efforts, and challenges maintaining brand governance.

 

Alternatively, your teams may be working well independently but be missing a major opportunity to collaborate more broadly across the company.

 

Working towards a holistic programme that aligns disparate production efforts and integrates various work streams across multiple calendars will give savvy brands the upper hand and help break through the noise.

Start 2019 Off with an Integrated Plan

The benefits of building a more integrated marketing organisation are clear. Investing in integrated marketing will:

  • Improve operational effectiveness and efficiency across the marketing organization.
  • Break down silos and encourage collaboration and efficiency.
  • Champion omni-channel marketing in the client organisation.
  • Position content as an asset that should be managed like all business IP.
  • Support the creation of a seamless and consistent customer experience.
  • Start looking within your company and reflecting on where you can improve operations and planning. 

Start by asking one simple question: what is a shared goal your teams can start to collaborate on? Start small but keep your focus on delivering an integrated, measurable, and relevant content experience across all customer touchpoints.

 

This is not a new idea but to see how you can get your online marketing integrated a start point, why not download my eBook from this link>>>

 

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Tags: integrated online marketing, get more leads, integrated internet marketing, b2b behavioural marketing, b2b integrated marketing, integrated b2b marketing

10 Ways your B2B Marketing can use Case Studies to get more Clients

Posted by frank harris on 10/01/19 10:11

case studySeveral factors distinguish B2B marketing from consumer marketing.

 

Firstly, there are typically multiple buyers and influencers involved in the decision-making. They will have varying interests and perspectives: financial, functional, operational.

 

Secondly, B2B sales cycles are generally long, largely due to the products and services being more complex.

 

Thirdly, B2B buyers are more informed. They must be because the consequences of making a poor decision can be severe. And they can be because everything a B2B buyer needs to know is literally at their fingertips.

 

According to Forrester, 59% of B2B buyers would rather conduct their research online than interact with a salesperson. Yet, 74% of B2B buyers will appoint the first supplier that helps them define the solution to their problem and shows them how to turn it into reality.

 

For marketers, this presents a real dilemma. How do you market to a warm lead that doesn’t wish to be marketed to?

 

The answer is to be visible and relevant online - at the right place at the right time and with the right content - so that potential clients can educate and inform themselves until they’re ready to start a conversation.

 

Case studies are one of the most effective ways of educating and informing B2B buyers. Case studies are perceived as having more credibility than other sales or marketing tactics in environments where the credentials of competing businesses are relatively similar. They provide testimony of an organisation's prior experience, evidence what’s been done, not what you might be capable of doing.

 

How do you make high-quality, highly effective marketing case studies? Here’s 10 tips:

  1. Know your Personas

Before writing up a case study make sure you identify your personas. Who are the buyers and influencers of your services or products? What do they need and want to know? What’s relevant to their purchase decision and what’s not?

 

Identify your personas and then write for them.

  1. Choose wisely

Find a case worth sharing by virtue of its complexity, peculiarity, importance, profile, challenges and outcomes.

 

A case study is an opportunity to showcase your company’s expertise, ability to think outside the box, superior outcomes, distinguishing features, and exceptional client service.

  1. Design a B2B Marketing Case Study Template

A case study template will help you to maintain consistency. Your case studies will have a common look and feel; and will share the same structure and sections.

 

When designing your case study template, anticipate the need to incorporate graphics, illustrations, callout boxes, direct quotes and imagery to illuminate key points and bring your case studies to life. Use visuals and make them brand-compliant.

  1. Permission and Approval

First, ensure you secure your client’s written approval before you publish. Store and link to the case study so it can always be located.

 

Also, secure permission and copyright for the use or reuse of any photographs, imagery or illustrations.

  1. Make them Accessible

Consider where, when, how and who will use your case studies.

 

Make it easy for your colleagues to access them – house them in a shared database. Your colleagues should not be held hostage to marketing every time they need basic marketing collateral.

 

Similarly, make it easy for your clients, prospects and other stakeholders to find, print, download and share your case studies. Tag your case studies by industry and issue and make them keyword-searchable.

  1. Show, don’t Tell

Case studies are highly effective at building awareness and driving consideration. But while the desired outcome is to sell your services to existing clients, and attract new ones, case studies aren’t sales pieces.

 

A case study is a modest, factual record of what was. Don’t be vague. Don’t generalise. Don’t speculate. Be specific. Stick to the facts. Tell the story and let the outcome speak for itself.

  1. Tell a Story

Case studies shouldn’t be dull and boring. Tell a story: this was the challenge; this was the solution; these were the results.

 

Write in the narrative. Be efficient with your words and focus only on what is relevant. Relay events in chronological order so it is easy for your personas to grasp the relevant details and appreciate the outcomes were achieved.

  1. Provide Context

Without context, a case study lacks meaning and impact. Include an analysis that describes the client, the challenges they faced, relevant factors (e.g. political climate, established or pending legislation or regulations, economic factors, competitor activity and so on).

 

Many B2B companies are reluctant to name their clients. And many clients don’t want to be named. You can still create a case study even though the identity of the client must be hidden. If that’s the case, help your readers relate to the situation by describing the client as much as possible – for example, its industry, headcount, turnover, ownership structure and key markets.

  1. Build a Library

B2B buyers rely on content including case studies to make or justify their purchasing decisions. In 2016 Demand Gen research indicated 47% of B2B buyers consult three to five pieces of relevant content before engaging with someone from a supplier. Make sure you have a reasonable volume and variety of case studies available. Keep them up-to-date and add new ones to your library whenever you can.

  1. Lessons learned

Have the courage to address lessons learned. Your existing and potential clients will take comfort from knowing your business is committed to capturing knowledge, adapting to change, and sharing best practice. It’s not about showing weakness; it’s about showing humility. Talk to what went well, what was unexpected and, when appropriate, what you’d do different.

 

Case studies are personal to that company. To learn how to personalise your website just click below:

 

B2B website personalisation

Tags: b2b marketing tips, small business web personalisation, b2b web personalisation, b2b behavioural marketing, b2b case study, b2b case studies

6 Tips on B2B Behavioural Marketing

Posted by frank harris on 09/01/19 16:19

behavioural marketingWith new technology, channels and tactics like B2B behavioural marketing available for interacting with customers and prospects, marketing is an ever-evolving discipline.

 

There’s a relatively simple concept behind much of this improvement - what someone DOES is important in deciding how to convince your personas most effectively.

 

Behaviours represent insight for the marketer to listen closely and act on that information.

 

When you use B2B behaviours to trigger interactions with an individual — the customer focus it encourages is the underpinning of improvement.

 

For many companies, the prospect of implementing behavioural marketing initiatives presents challenges and uncertainties that can prevent them from going down this path and grasping the benefits that can occur. These 6 tips will help you get started.

1. Avoid Becoming Overwhelmed.

With customer behaviours happening every second of every day, updating your existing processes to deliver ideal content at the perfect time for each contact in your database is daunting. However, you can use behavioural marketing to gain improvements over time and make measured, positive change.

 

As you begin your implementation, it doesn’t mean you have to change every marketing practice on one day. The key is to think of behaviours as a new way to look at your entire marketing effort.

2. Assess and Upgrade your Technology

Often, your existing email platform simply runs out of steam as your lists become bigger and your desires become more behavioural.

 

If it’s time to upgrade, spend time with your industry peers and understand which vendors have the best solutions for your business. Build ROI cases based on data from industry analysts and customer case studies.

3. Assemble the Right Team.

Behavioural marketing is a mix of art and science. We use our creative brains to model customer journeys, and scientific methods to track and assess events within those journeys, and then again use our creativity to deliver the best message at the right time.

 

Therefore, you’ll see effective marketing teams seamlessly blending the two skills together.  So, choose consultants or employees with these attributes. As the market is moving toward more quantified, personalised buying experiences build your competency now to pay dividends in your future.

4. Track and Segment Personas based on Website Behaviours.

Now you’re ready to begin. Start by capturing the behaviours of website visitors to link their actions to known users and tie behaviours to previously anonymous visitors if they identify themselves in the future.

 

You’ll need to work with IT to install the JavaScript tracking code. This one-time effort opens a customer-level view of behaviours that should flow into your marketing automation platform and become elements you can query.

5. Employ the “Next Six” Methodology.

How can you refine your marketing to be more behavioural-driven, whilst executing your current campaigns?

 

A good way to make this change over time is to improve in small chunks, over a specified period. This simpler view of change is that you only have to plan changes in groups of three to support a larger change initiative. And if you tackle three of these per quarter, you can change your marketing approach in the course of 12 to 18 months.

 

If you’re good at planning and delivering change, then the next step will be to add a third element like a CRM. Give yourself a year or longer to tackle these big efforts, but ensure you remain dissatisfied with your current state and always be moving forward.

 

Take the time to fully articulate your future state at 12, 18 and 24 months. Be very specific about what capabilities you’d like to have, and then back the changes required to get there.

 

6. Pick 3 key Behaviour-driven Automated Programmes to Build and Launch.

To start your behavioural marketing journey, consider focusing on these three specific programmes, which will yield strong returns for most businesses:

  • Cart or process abandonment - In many cases, a series of 3 messages will yield the best results. Spend time thinking about the pace and content of each of the three messages. The first should be within 30 minutes of abandon, the second should come the next day and perhaps feature an offer, and the final should happen roughly two days later and make your absolute best case for the purchase, trial download, etc.
  • Browse abandonment - Once someone visits one or more product pages on your site, your browse abandonment programme should automatically trigger a message featuring the best sellers in the category and include a call-to-action. By playing back content the person is interested in, you subtly reinforce that you’re paying attention, driving personalisation through the roof.
  • Welcome campaign - A comprehensive, well orchestrated welcome process can create an deeper bond with a recipient. You might begin a welcome series with a simple thank-you message, move on to content about your online offering, and close with an offer designed to drive the purchase. Keep it personal, light and informative and you’ll build a quick rapport with new customers, which often leads to more profitability later.

As you continue implementing more behavioural marketing tactics, you may have to go down a road that’s unique to your business but remember that rarely do bad things happen when you’re relentlessly moving forward. Be thoughtful and realistic, but don’t hold back. To help you further click the link below>>>

 

B2B website personalisation

Tags: b2b marketing tips, small business website marketing, website marketing for small businesses, small business online marketing, b2b web personalisation, b2b behavioural marketing

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