My Background in B2B
I began my career with a focus on B2B (business-to-business). I took a blip in Boston to assist universities in their strategy to attract and convert students for their continuing education programs through a multi-channel strategy that worked quite well – shout out to MindMax.
I came back to B2B in NYC and then jumped over to artificial intelligence for a large CPG client and I found myself engulfed in a world of metrics like impressions and SOV – metrics that really don’t inspire me.
When you take someone who has been trained to report on conversions and CPAC (cost per acquired customer) and bring her into a world where:
- brand teams are fighting for their budget and want to spend – just to spend
- savings never seems to be a success
- the convolution of offline sales and calculating true brand lift is a black hole leading to an educated guess
It never ends well. Why? Because I like hard facts. I like to be able to track the efforts of a campaign to come out on the other side and say “this was your return on investment”.
B2B marketing has been said to be difficult for a few reasons:
- Your targets are shrewd buyers that require a strategic nurture strategy resulting in a longer sales cycle
- The competition is fierce
- Turnkey solutions are offered at every corner and their price tag is quite tempting for our buyers
- However, there is no turnkey solution – B2B organizations require a customized strategy that is tailored to their organizational structure, businesses goals, industry and more
Someone once asked me on an interview call:
“You have been in B2B for a while now, you must be ready to branch out into something a little more exciting…?”
Quite the opposite Karen. All of the reasons above are why I love B2B – it is complex and I am immersed in a world of highly-intelligent and poignant human beings, in both my competitive landscape and lead pool.
What’s happening in B2B at the moment?
B2B marketers continue to sharpen their skillsets and advance in growth marketing. A need to report on true ROI is still a struggle for the industry but I personally have a mission for our team to architect each campaign with care.
B2B, no matter the industry is perfectly aligned for digital marketing. The focus is not simply to increase leads but to become laser-focused in the value of a customer. When you begin to optimize for a more focused message you will bring in more qualified leads. So clients need to readjust their understanding of what is success.
Ex. 100 leads per month when only 2 become customers OR 20 leads per month when 5 become customers?
What B2B tactics are here to stay?
- Website Optimization – supported by UX design + SEO
- Content Marketing – with an inbound approach
- Email Marketing – with the right CRM for your business and budget
- Paid Advertising – supported by AI if you have the budget
- Social Media – with a proper content calendar that envelops your SEO strategy
Where to begin?
- Research and Strategy
- Who, What, Why and where have been prior to extract data to build upon
- Is your website engineered to lead in the correct prospects?
- Are your forms enabled to qualify and ask the right questions to enable your sales team?
- What tools are you using?
- Are you tracking properly?
- Is there one source of truth?
- Is your MarTech overlapping? Consolidation can clean up your data and save money
- Find the right agency partner
- Plan and execute
- Stay integrated and in-tune with your partner for quicker success and bigger impact
Remember that B2B sales cycles are longer and have a complexity that takes time to breakdown. For companies that have been around 15+ years and are 100+ employees, the time to re-engineer your MarTech in tandem with your digital efforts will take time, but it is all worth it in the long run – I promise. Schedule a call with us today – we are good listeners.