What is B2B Marketing?

Samuel Monse

Samuel Monse

22.11.2022
to read

Updated: 30.11.2022

5/5 - (2 голоса)

Medium

Marketing

Theory

B2B marketing is the process of marketing goods or services from one business to another. It typically involves businesses that sell products or services that are used by other businesses, rather than by individual consumers. B2B marketing can take many forms, including advertising, e-commerce, and direct marketing. As with any type of marketing, the main goal of B2B marketing is to generate leads and sales.

Glossary_B2B_Marketing_1

For marketing in the B2B business today it is not enough just to generate leads or cover bigger territory. If a company wants to boost revenues and stand out from the competition (even if the competitors’ prices are low), it needs to change its marketing approach in order to focus on the customer experience rather than rely on price.

Features of B2B marketing comparing to the B2C marketing

  • Typically, B2B brands build a closer relationship with the customer than B2C brands do, because contracts in the B2B segment can last for years. Moreover, in B2B marketing, the process of selling the goods may last longer than in B2C and is more dependent on personal contact with a company representative.
  • B2C advertising relies on memorable creatives - it's important for companies to convince customers that they need their product. B2B marketing emphasizes expert status - it is important for companies to show that they know better than anyone else the peculiarities of the client's business, its complexities and challenges.
  • Unlike B2C marketing where decisions of the client are often impulsive and the choice between several products is based on personal preferences, clients of B2B companies proceed from considerations of benefit to the company and choose a partner as rationally as possible. Therefore, decisions often take longer as clients evaluate each company and its benefits to the business.

The basis for the marketing mix in B2B

Maintain close contact with customers

B2B companies are usually in regular contact with B2B customers anyway, and they tend to be loyal to their partners. It is important to collect feedback - learn how you can support your loyal customers, anticipate changes and improve CX.

Use all digital channels

Make sure your brand's digital channels are up to date, including website, blog, and social media profiles. Optimize digital channels: update SEO, SMM and online advertising. Determine what's working and what's not, reallocate resources and budget if necessary.

Don't ignore video

Convert your B2B brand's marketing messages to video, it's the in-demand format of the future. In 2019, 87% of businesses now use video as a marketing tool (up from 63% in 2017 and 81% in 2018). And 83% of marketers believe video brings them good ROI.

Manage your online reputation

It used to be thought that online reviews were only important for B2C companies, and it was shallow and not particularly relevant for B2B brands. But a company's online reputation and overall impression of the company affect customers' decisions to work with the company in the B2B segment as well. Accordingly, you need to monitor reviews, mentions, follow what they say about the company on social networks, on review sites, and on industry sites. There are various tools, services, and bots for this. It's important to work with negative reviews (remembering that by responding to one user on a public site, you're responding to all of your current and potential customers at once), and with SEO optimization so that positive relevant content overrides negative content.

Give customers something of value

A good tactic to attract clients is to give them something of value right away that will cost you next to nothing. For example, expert help of one kind or another: checklists, optimization tips, training and webinars, access to digital services. Be sure to collect contact information - this will allow you to re-contact a person who clearly has an interest in your field, an initial knowledge of your brand and a positive attitude towards it (if what you have given has been really useful).

Be flexible when planning marketing activities

In today's volatile environment, planning needs flexibility and a willingness to replay everything in real time. This is all the more relevant because many companies have smaller marketing budgets.

Up to date tendencies in B2B marketing

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Despite the traditional importance of desktops for B2B marketing, in recent years the share of advertising spending on mobile devices has consistently increased. On an annualized basis, time spent on desktops and laptops rose 5.3%. Advertiser spending in this segment also increased, although last year hardly anyone would have guessed that.

B2B-events are one of the main tools of promotion and sales for many market players. At trade shows and conferences, sellers and buyers can get to know each other, verify expertise, and begin negotiations.

Travel restrictions have affected customer and supplier behavior - just like in the B2C segment, business has gone online. According to Wunderman Thompson, while B2B customers made up to 44% of their sales offline through sales representatives before the covid crisis, after the quarantine, only 16% did so. Other indicators (KPIs) of online sales are also growing: for example, the number of B2B customers who make purchases on vendors' sites rose from 51% to 54% during the coronavirus restrictions.

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