Digital marketing remains a vital component of marketing strategy for B2C and B2B brands alike. But the approach can still be unfamiliar territory for some B2B marketers as they evaluate and strategize how to best position and optimize messaging for their brands.
People today spend upwards of two hours per day on a mobile device and additional time on a desktop computer. Although some experts anticipate a decline in desktop computer use, they anticipate an increase in mobile device use.
Regardless of how users access content, digital marketing remains a critical strategy for reaching them. To reap the benefits of increased time spent online, marketers must continue adjusting their strategies and omnichannel campaigns.
B2B marketers focused on achieving success similar to their B2C counterparts' can learn from the strategies B2C marketers successfully use in consumer-focused marketing.
The trifecta of remote work, shrinking marketing budgets, and increased online activity highlight the necessity of B2B marketers' adopting and implementing proven B2C strategies to enhance outreach.
1. Increased Personalization
Buyers expect personal connections and an outstanding brand experience when making their purchases. B2C brands tend to use upbeat, personal tones across their messaging, whereas B2B marketing often has a more technical and buttoned-up approach.
Although B2B customers may appreciate—and expect—a more technical tone at times, B2B email marketing presents an opportunity to humanize formal communication with a more personal tone, which can lead to additional sales. The strategy also helps cultivate human-to-human connections and foster a better brand experience.
That's not to suggest that you skip professionalism or reputation. You should maintain decorum and standards even as you add personality to the mix. People value the human element and experience, and they appreciate the effort brands make to personalize communication, empathize with prospects' issues and challenges, and encourage engagement or outreach for more information. Don't toss out your value propositions or current messaging—instead, adjust them to convey a more personal tone.
As a channel, email allows for more direct conversations. Email contacts opt to receive your communication because they want to hear from you.
Use that connection to your advantage. Take simple opportunities to customize emails beyond the "first name" or "company name" fields; again, your prospects want to connect with humans. Expand your personal touch by incorporating seasonal or holiday hooks into messaging, expressing customer appreciation, or even showcasing your company's personality via fun footers and subscription preference messages.
2. Digital Touchpoints
Digital touchpoints, such as marketing emails or text message marketing, require you to play the long game because a typical buyer might engage with 10-20 touchpoints before buying. Those touchpoints, however, allow B2B companies to establish and cultivate long-term relationships with their customers and signal warmer leads rather than targeting one-time buyers. Someone who's not quite ready to make a purchase is nevertheless absorbing and stashing away information to use later. That longer conversion time requires nurturing customers throughout their journey by providing meaningful insights that support their evaluation.
B2B marketers who invoke broader omnichannel strategies, such as trigger-based email campaigns, add a critical component to a subscriber's experience. In fact, 33% of brands reported in a Litmus survey that transactional and triggered messages generated more than 25% of their revenue.
Customer behavior and certain events can physically trigger messages. In B2C scenarios, perhaps a customer adds an item to the shopping cart but doesn't go through with the purchase. The abandoned cart triggers the system to send emails that include a sale on dog treats, or whatever the customer had in the cart.
In a B2B marketing scenario, someone might register for a webinar but not attend. The absence could trigger a follow-up email that includes a recording and an invitation to speak to a representative about what was missed.
B2B marketers should also examine how their B2C counterparts integrate insights from one channel, such as email, into their larger content strategy. Because people are spending significant time browsing online via mobile devices, brands that enhance their mobile presence are granted nearly unlimited access to users.
For example, consider a particular email that proves especially effective at driving sales from those who read the email on a mobile device. Marketers should share a similar campaign via social or text message marketing.
3. Relevant Content
Although most B2B brands don't have the ability to use the kind of abandoned cart campaigns B2C brands use, B2B marketers can implement something similar based on previous campaigns, content, and interactions.
For example, get prospects interested again by analyzing which content is most successful within your funnel. Based on the most downloaded content, the number of views, and social engagement for specific messages, brands can see what's trending within the space.
Also, marketers are better able to serve up relevant content in a time when consumers are asking for personalized experiences. Fully 80% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a brand that provides personalized experiences, Epsilon research indicates.
In B2B marketing, such a campaign won't necessarily result in a direct sale; however, marketers who follow up with relevant, helpful materials for a customer prove value to a manager while earning the customer's gratitude and respect. Sometimes it's better to have an additional touchpoint while garnering customer information and data to further develop a lifelong customer than complete a one-time sale.
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Even though B2C and B2B brands sell completely different products, B2B brands can still implement B2C marketing strategies to increase ROI and develop long-term customer relationships.
Using personalization, digital touchpoints, and new campaign styles in your B2B marketing can lead to many benefits without having to completely reinvent the wheel.
More Resources on B2B and B2C Marketing Strategies
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