This blog covers the topic of B2B Marketing and contains a lot of interesting information and guidance. However, if you’d rather take an easier route to success, please do check out the ‘Collate Systems’ approach. We don’t just offer consultancy, we actually run your lead generation programme for you, it all requiring minimal intervention by yourself. We really do ‘Walk the Walk’, but not only that, we support you all the way too.
B2B Marketing is the term given to businesses that focus on selling products or services to other businesses, rather than to consumers. B2B companies tend to offer supporting services, perhaps even marketing services, to other businesses, providing facilities that are needed to enable that business to operate and grow.
The list of such services is endless, including payroll services, logistics, printing and packaging, raw materials to name but a few.
This means that B2B companies have an entirely different target market than B2C (Business to Consumer) who sell only to the general public.
However, it is not just the target market that is different, but the way the marketing message is conveyed.
B2B is Different to B2C
Business to Consumer companies focus on a consumer’s desire to receive something new, different, fun or convenient. Emotion is often the main driver in the purchasing decision, this being entirely different from the B2B market place.
B2B companies on the other hand face the challenge of convincing the buyers and company decision-makers that their products or services will provide a return on investment and are of suitable quality.
The key to a successful B2B marketing campaign is being able to demonstrate that the product or service will improve that business’s bottom line. For example, if you are offering a solution that streamlines processes, you must focus on the efficiencies that would be gained by using your service.
Similarly, if your services will increase traffic to a website or boost the number of leads, you have to highlight the potential for added revenue.
B2B Marketing – The Underlying Message
The underlying message here is that in business, everything comes back to profitability. So, if you can make a strong case, showing that your products or services will improve the bottom line of the targeted business, conversion becomes that much more likely.
The rise of the internet has had a huge impact on the way businesses sell to each other, as well as creating a whole new range of services and the companies that sell them. B2B E-commerce has been at the forefront of this change, redefining the way business and their suppliers work together.
The Two Main Types of Digital B2B companies
Website Development and Marketing
In this day and age, all businesses need a website. In some instances, these are just online brochures, in others they are designed as lead generation engines. Whatever the purpose, in all cases, the services of a professional web development company will be required. They will handle the creation and maintenance of the company’s websites and where applicable, the associated marketing activities such as Search Engine Optimisation and Paid Advertising, such as Google Adwords.
Embedded services include content creation, for the company blog as well as videos and podcasts. The list of services is endless.
Procurement and Information Exchanges
Companies often sell only to small market niches, using websites known an E-procurement sites, these companies provide physical products to a range of industries. Using these, a company purchasing agent can search for supplies from a number of vendors, request quotations and in some cases bid on items.
Access to up to date information is vital in today’s fast changing world, the need giving birth to a whole new range of specialised vertical industry portals. These provide information for specific industry sectors, like construction, healthcare and education.
Hosting discussion groups, product reviews and news feeds to mention a few, these vertical portal sites fulfil a different purpose to the E-procurement sites, even though they often support the purchasing process.
Sitting between the customer and the supplier, brokering sites offer assistance to hard pressed company buyers in another way. Acting as intermediaries between suppliers / service providers and the business customer, these brokers smooth the way, enabling both parties to get the best possible deal.
The brokers and their sites offer an invaluable service, providing expertise that is not always found in a business. An example here is where a construction business needs to lease some type of equipment. In this instance the broker will help the construction company find a supplier that is willing to lease out the needed equipment.
Who uses B2B Marketing
The purpose of all B2B marketing is to build bonds with every potential customer, with the aim of creating a lasting customer relationship. This is an important goal for any company, regardless of whether it is a huge corporation or an SME.
B2B marketing is normally used by those businesses that make products, or offer services that consumers don’t have an interest in. For example, increasing the number of leads by using the power of LinkedIn being one very obvious service that a consumer would not want.
On the product front, a company selling x-ray equipment would not be interested in pursuing consumers, instead they would use the B2B marketing process in order to establish a ‘connection’ with the buyers in the medical sector.
The B2B Marketing plan
A successful B2B marketing plan will effectively place products or services in front of businesses that could potentially purchase them. This is done by positioning the offering in an exciting manner, by fully understanding the customer’s needs, and most importantly, proposing a solution that meets those needs.
Understanding the customer’s needs is paramount in the B2B marketing process, the most important part of which, with businesses, is how much difference can be made to their bottom line.
Only once their clients’ needs have been understood can any marketing or advertising tactics be employed. This is a lot different from B2C marketing. Here an effective advertisement programme could be blasted out over a huge variety of channels, a percentage of consumers being driven to purchase the product, this mostly being an emotionally based decision.
However, B2B marketing is much more specialised. Unless the clients’ needs are fully known and taken into account, the marketing activity could well alienate the very people they wish to engage with. The tailoring of any product or service to match the needs of the customer is therefore a vital part of the B2B marketing process.
B2B Marketing and LinkedIn
At Collate Systems we have a well defined and proven set of techniques, which when deployed always increase the amount of business gained and the number of leads obtained via the LinkedIn platform.
This is our offering. Being based on the needs of our customers, the core of the operation is to increase the visibility of our clients on LinkedIn and to establish a worthwhile and long lasting connection.
Other B2B Topics Covered in our Blog
Besides our marketing tips we also provide information on:-
B2B is a lot different to B2C marketing and our deep understanding of the processes involved could well benefit your business.
Using the data we have collected from LinkedIN, we can run a series of Lead Generation programmes, each one tuned to meet your specific needs.
Lead Generation Tips
We also offer advice on how to generate leads and sales, providing case studies on previous successful lead generation strategies, all of which will assist in your overall b2b marketing plan.
Email Lists and Business Contact Data Lists
Email lists, telephone numbers and names can all be provided. However, these, as well as any other data sources must be used in accordance with current GDPR regulations.