Work in the field of B2B is aimed at interaction between corporate clients. They are mainly engaged in sales of industrial equipment, consultations, creation and development of dealer networks, IT and other services. Promotion on the Internet of sites owned by representatives of large and medium-sized businesses has its own characteristics. Practice shows that a combination of different methods works most effectively, since they often complement each other and create a certain synergy effect. For marketers in the B2B niche, the decision on promotion methods depends on the available data and the maturity of the brand. In this article, we share our experience on how to combine different promotion mechanisms – contextual advertising, SEO and other Internet marketing tools.
Features of promoting B2B sites
The B2B (business to business) sphere has a number of unique features that are important to consider during promotion. This is not about the end consumer, which is another company, but about the methods of promotion of the site and services. Promotion of a B2B site requires an integrated approach, where various tools are used at different stages of the chain of interaction with a potential client. Why is that?
It’s all about the B2B product. As a rule, this is a complex set of services for which direct sales are not suitable. For example, if you have an online electronics store, then in order to increase sales of phones, it is enough to find the target user and set up ad banners with a profitable USP (in general terms). If you provide consulting services for business, for example, in the field of law, then you must first convey their value to a potential client, and only then send the USP.
Therefore, a multi-touch sales model works best for B2B, when a potential client is first introduced to the product, shown what pains and needs he can solve, and only after that they are converted into a customer.
When planning the promotion of a B2B website, it is important to form a comprehensive project strategy, which subsequently needs to be implemented using different channels.
B2B business promotion channels
We offer to consider the most effective B2B marketing channels and how to use them to grow your business, attract potential customers and increase revenue.
B2B site SEO promotion
For search promotion of a B2B site, it is very important to pay special attention to the content. Therefore, it is best to deal with filling the site on your own or seek help from a qualified author with experience in your niche.
You need to talk about your services in a language understandable to the target user. If there are too many terms and professionalism in the text, only employees in your field will be able to understand it, and not potential customers. If the texts are superficial and describe obvious things, then the visitor will simply leave the site, since it does not carry informational value.
Therefore, it is important to conduct a marketing analysis of the audience before launching.SEO promotion. It is necessary to determine the level of awareness of the target group, as well as draw up a portrait of the client. Based on the analysis, you will be able to determine what information is most interesting for the target audience. This will help in expanding the semantic core and compiling technical specifications for texts.
Contextual advertising for a B2B site
Among paid tools for promoting B2B sites, the most effective contextual advertising. This is the placement of text ads in the ad blocks of search results with a link to your resource. They differ from the usual search results only by the inscription “advertising” next to the link.
In order for this tool to be effective, it is necessary to set up high-quality impressions for the most relevant queries. It is also necessary to monitor the return on investment so that the cost of an impression does not exceed the benefit that can be obtained.
In a multi-touch sales system, contextual advertising is the first contact. Its task is to attract the attention of the user, bring him to the site. Therefore, without quality content, it will be ineffective.
Social media promotion for B2B
SMM or social media marketing of a B2B site is, first of all, work on the company’s reputation. This tool performs the following tasks:
- increases consumer loyalty;
- forms the image of the company;
- increases reach and awareness;
- builds long-term relationships with clients.
By keeping in touch with the target audience through publications in your own public or on the page, you increase the trust of potential customers. After you manage to build a base of interested and informed subscribers, you can start selling.
Targeted advertising for B2B companies
To be successful using this promotion channel, you need to clearly know what the strengths of the platform are and how to use the tool effectively. To get the most out of social media for B2B marketing, it’s best to do the following:
- in the settings, select large B2B segments – similar audiences. Targeting job positions and company profiles is not particularly effective;
- form offers at the top of the sales funnel . In the B2B sphere, decisions are not made spontaneously, so targeted advertising is a way to initially familiarize the audience with the product;
- implement the Facebook Conversion API . This will increase the long-term potential, provide an opportunity to improve quality through more precise optimization of pixel-based business KPIs. True, after the release of updates for iOS 14, it became more difficult to track user actions with such devices, but in general, the tool continues to work.
A common targeting mistake is trying to identify the B2B purchase decision maker. That’s why it’s important to target all the stakeholders that can potentially influence the outcome.
Email newsletters for B2B business
Email marketing is an effective way to establish and maintain relationships with potential customers. But unlike B2C email campaigns, B2B email campaigns need to focus on providing in-depth information about your products and building long-term relationships.
In general, you can offer your subscribers ideas, tips, and other information related to the industry. And as potential customers move up the sales funnel, you need to focus on how the company can help solve specific corporate consumer problems or achieve specific goals. More about how it works car funnel sales read in another post.
It is recommended to start with a monthly email newsletter. Newsletters should be easy to read, informative and regular. No need to bombard your subscribers with commercial offers – an email once a month can be enough to keep potential customers on track with your business and learn new information about you.
B2B business marketing
In the process of preparing a marketing strategy in B2B business, the first step is to accurately determine the target group.
Then you need to clarify how best to connect with your target audience. Are potential customers active on the Internet, can they be contacted through Facebook or other social networks? Are contacts possible through the professional network LinkedIn?
Next, you should clearly define your goals, because it matters a lot what is the first priority – attracting new customers or increasing awareness of the company or brand.
Efficiency is demonstrated by a multi-stage strategy for working with clients in B2B.
At each of these stages, different channels for attracting customers and retaining them can be used. It is important for B2B to prove its value to its target audience, so the brand awareness strategy is a priority. At the same time, contextual advertising, promotion in social networks can be used at the first stage, and then content marketing, email newsletters, and B2B website promotion are effective.
We advise B2B internet marketing to be based on the following principles:
Every job starts with a plan. First, decide on the purpose of each campaign, study your target audience. Once you understand what you want to achieve, set key performance indicators to stay on track. Review your plan periodically in line with KPIs. If it doesn’t work, don’t be afraid to make changes.
- Data analysis
First, you will get access to information about potential customers, and launched campaigns will become more personalized and more effective. Secondly, based on real data, you will be able to make quick and correct decisions, reducing costs and reducing the number of lost customers.
- visual content
Nobody wants to read a blog with long paragraphs. Content doesn’t have to be boring. Bring your blogs, websites, and marketing campaigns to life with visual assets—videos, GIFs, infographics, and high-quality images. All this stimulates interaction with customers and strengthens the brand image.
- Form style
Speaking of branding, the best thing you can do for your company is stick to the image. Think about how you want to be perceived, what are your values, tone of voice and visual identity. Customers remain loyal to consistent and transparent brands, so building a brand and building awareness around it will only strengthen your position in the market.
- Solving customer problems
When you know more about your customers, you can add value to their lives. Buyers no longer want to be sold to; they want to be offered something that could help them solve current issues. Come with the perfect solution or advice and you will be their partner for years to come.
- Experiment is everything
Our long-term experience shows that there is no perfect marketing strategy. Hard work, persistence, A/B testing, and experimentation are the tools that will help you succeed in B2B. Another thing to keep in mind is that the marketing industry is constantly evolving. You need to stay up to date with the latest innovations and trends.
How to SEO-optimize a B2B site?
Semantic core selection
To successfully promote a B2B site, a specialist will need a list of keywords related to the subject of the resource and the direction in the business as a whole. The collected requests can later be used to optimize the site and set up an advertising campaign. You can collect semantics manually or using various services.
To compose a semantic core, you need to sequentially perform the following steps:
- collect the most capacious list of keywords that describe in detail the subject and purpose of the business. This can be done with the help of special tools for B2B SEO;
- cluster prepared key queries by sections and subsections of the project;
- prepare TOR for optimizing the site pages, taking into account the keys, divided into groups.
In B2B business, non-commercial queries are more often used.
A carefully crafted BR will help implement any B2B marketing strategy. It will form the basis of B2B SEO and pay-per-click advertising campaigns.
Internal website optimization
Promotion of a B2B site has its own characteristics. In particular, our experts advise to adhere to the following principles:
- Work on improving the site’s user experience (UX)
The most important elements should be clear, recognizable and accessible. Links, buttons and other clickable elements should be easily identifiable. You can also improve UX by allowing customers to create their own accounts. This not only increases user loyalty, but also simplifies the buying process. Because the customer will be able to view previous orders, reorder products as needed, and save all information about their selection.
- Don’t forget about the CTA
In marketing, a call-to-action is a statement that encourages people to respond immediately. The purpose of a B2B quotation is usually to encourage the user to use the service, request a free custom quote, contact the company for more information. Calls to action are an important component of website optimization. We recommend using it on landing pages, category pages, product descriptions.
- Adapt your site for mobile devices
People are increasingly using their smartphones to conduct business, including receiving mail, solving work issues. Many people do business on their phones before and after work, while traveling, at meetings, directly at the workplace. For a B2B business, it is important to stay connected and have access to information. So simplify the menu, use a responsive theme, work on increasing your loading speed. All this will help you not to miss the opportunity to connect with customers through mobile devices.
External SEO website optimization
Another effective way to increase the authority of a B2B site is off-page optimization. Links to a resource show both audiences and search engines that this is a reliable source of information and that the site offers high-quality products or services worthy of a recommendation. Thus, links from authoritative sites can take your B2B business to the next level.
One of the surest ways to get referrals from authority and news sites is to create content that will engage users. So if you post informative, detailed content, you are more likely to get useful backlinks that will increase your SERP rankings.
You can also try to build partnerships with reputable sources by including links to their websites in your publications. But at the same time, don’t take part in a fake link exchange – it won’t be profitable in the long run, and the company could be penalized by the Google search engine.
How to calculate the payback of B2B website promotion?
To get adequate results, which will become the basis of a marketing strategy in B2B, you need to rely on relevant indicators. For example, while impressions can be useful for tracking reach, if your main goal is conversions, then this metric won’t work.
Depending on the stage of the sales funnel, the indicators for analysis may be different:
The formulas showing the return on investment are also important – Lead Value (LV), Cost Per Lead (CPL). For each campaign, determine how many leads you want to generate and then determine your target CPL. This should be lower than the average Lead Value (LV).
The main way to calculate ROI in B2B marketing is to determine ROI.
ROI = (return on investment – value of investment)/(value of investment) × 100%
This means that you need to measure your results – brand awareness, leads or others, and calculate all the costs of implementing the strategy.
The most important thing about an ROI report is not only the number you get, but understanding the process. Take the time to study the data and process the results. The more critically you analyze the results, the more you can improve them next time.
Modern search engine updates and other changes in the field of customer data privacy are forcing marketers to look for new ways to implement their strategy. In this regard, contextual advertising is good, with its help you can reach the target audience in the most economical way. And if users see interesting content on the pages that meets their expectations, then trust in your company will increase, which will lead to targeted and high-quality leads.