What do B2B customers want? They want great digital experiences. Whether that’s speedy purchases, real-time product configurations, and pricing, or delivering online tools, they expect you to do so effectively. They also expect you to decode the interactions they prefer and invest in them.
Unfortunately, many B2B vendors set up a digital presence as a formality. They have a website and a couple of social pages that they update occasionally.
They don’t consider digital channels capable of generating sales and because of this, they fail to take the shaping posture that would help retain them in the value chain. To their competition’s joy.
If you haven’t considered digitization of B2B sales and marketing, we highly recommend you set one up. If you already have one but need help identifying suitable strategies for driving sales, read on.
1. Identify Your Target Audience
Identifying your audience enables you to formulate marketing strategies that are relevant to prospect’s situations and lower your expenses by eliminating poor leads.
Without clear target audiences, personalizing your marketing messages will be next to impossible. It will be similar to shooting in the dark and hoping to walk away with a game.
How do you determine your target audience?
- Determine your solutions’ competitive advantages. What’s the “wow” that will compel people to buy? Features are great but people want to know how they stand to benefit by investing in your solutions.
- Tie these benefits to a particular group of buyers. If you sell HR software with an average customer size of 500 to 1000 employees, who will benefit most from the software? A start-up, a small company, or a larger corporation?
- Identify buyers’ limitations. Using the HR software example, the 1000+ employee company may desire features that your product doesn’t contain. Or a smaller company may love your product but have no budget.
- Know your limitations. If a mega customer approached you, do you have the capacity (financial, human resources, etc) to meet their needs without compromising on some things?
2. Make Cold Calls
Mention cold calling among sales and marketing teams and you can almost see shivers go down their spine. No one likes being snubbed or told off when they are trying to share something useful.
Is it all bad?
Fortunately, no since lead generation firms use this strategy to book sales meetings on their clients’ behalf all the time.
Let’s look at some best practices
- Make mental preparations. Not everyone will be thrilled to receive an unsolicited call and you need to be prepared for their responses. Use what motivates you to prepare mentally, and look forward to the opportunity that may come your way.
- Practice. Imagine you hit the jackpot and connect with a top prospect-. Will you confidently share your value proposition? Word vomit all over them or worse, freeze up? Practice will help ensure you don’t do the last two.
- Sound human-like. Inject some personality in your voice or risk sounding like a robot and getting hung up on. Do some research to identify an open that will break the barrier and make you likable.
- Know all your value props. Internalize your product’s values so you can pivot them based off the prospect’s pain points. Where possible, refer to case studies about similar customers to help them visualize how your solutions can help them.
3. Video Marketing
Here’s a useful statistic—up to 87 percent of marketers attribute video marketing to the increase they see in sales. Videos aren’t just snackable, they help build authenticity as brands take the time to explain complex business solutions.
To maximize this strategy, consider this
- Boost organic reach through your social channels. Social platforms are great for getting eyes on your brand and solutions. Leverage trending hashtags or topics to boost your exposure.
- Share testimonial videos. What better advocates can a brand hope for than satisfied customers? Customers talk about challenges that marketers may not cover which increases relatability, to your advantage.
- Create joint videos with a complementary brand. You’ll be tapping into your partner’s audiences and effectively expanding your reach. Plus, the backlinks and traffic gains from your partner’s website and social channels may positively impact your search engine rankings.
- Create targeted video ads. These short online video clips allow for granular-level audience targeting based on behavior, interests, and even demographics. The message they convey is functional, relatable and is meant to inspire action.
4. Email Marketing
An optimal email is one that boosts your sales pipeline velocity, develops opportunities for upselling and cross-selling, and nurtures targets to make them sales-ready.
Unlike B2C emails that revolve around gimmicks, promotions, and discounts, the B2B emails we craft are about educating pre-qualified people. These emails are both informative and have clear profit goals in mind because customers will always want to know how to boost revenues in a credible manner.
In educating these pre-qualified soon-to-be buyers, you want to communicate the value you provide so as to make the potential supplier shortlist. To achieve sales-ready leads, a brand can outsource to an email marketing agency or put in the work to tailor targeted email campaigns.
For the latter, you’ll need
- To research intent data so you formulate proactive emails that address the needs of those visiting your site, downloading content, or interacting with your content.
- Identify the right contact persons. And in many cases, it’s never the CEO. Most companies have people or buying committees tasked with purchasing and these are the people you want to target.
- Use a single CTA per email. It ensures the recipients concentrate on the content and act. When you have multiple CTAs going on, people won’t be sure which one to click on first and end up not selecting anything.
5. Marketing Automation
Which one of these sounds familiar?
- Your marketing team isn’t generating enough quality leads for the sales guys
- Your team has trouble consistently following up with prospects
- Your team can’t seem to nurture prospects efficiently throughout cycle
- You don’t have an effective way of qualifying leads
These are some of the hindrances sales and marketing teams experience, which keep them from boosting sales despite being busy at work.
Marketing automation can help cut through these hindrances so you can generate and manage leads more effectively to fuel growth.
Marketing automation tools can help
- Manage your email marketing campaigns. These tools help segment mailing lists and deliver messages at a scheduled date and time to large audiences. They also allow you to vary email content based on dynamic variables.
- Nurture journeys. The tools collect data allowing teams to discern what content, assets, or links contained in their emails elicited the most favorable responses. They can then personalize their messaging, build positive reputations, and reduce unsubscribes.
- Lead scoring. Automation tools rate your leads at different stages so you can know their buying propensity and how to treat them. This ensures that prospects who are closer to buying are passed to the sales guys while those that need further nurturing are retained in the marketing funnel.