- Make Relationships (Not Sales) the Number One Marketing Aim
Revenue and sales metrics rely on a foundation of excellent client relationships.
Drop the ball, fail to check-in, or let a customer connection go stale, and you can quickly see those bread and butter clients start to fall by the wayside.
Rather than making marketing all about new clients, new leads and new contracts, make sure you're investing plenty of effort into building on existing relationships and solidifying your presence as a supplier your buyers want to do business with.
There are multiple potential ways to structure this in:
- Personalising marketing without ever sending generic emails or bland follow-ups that feel inauthentic.
- Setting up auto-responders to acknowledge when a client places an order, submits an enquiry, or responds to any CTAs in your marketing content.
- Offering points systems, loyalty rewards or access to added-value member's content to make your customers feel appreciated and seen.
Although it sounds obvious, many brands are so overwhelmed with the drive for newness they forget that a whopping 84% of B2B buyers purchase from suppliers they enjoy dealing with (even if the business terms aren't as competitive as another!).
Feeling energetic? Invite your key clients to an event or launch party and make a point of emphasising how much you value their business.
- Concentrate on Proactive Diversity and Inclusion Practises
Diversity and inclusion (D&I) is a considerable priority in the B2B business space.
In an era of instant visibility and social media reporting, it simply isn't sufficient to have a few decent policies.
Your marketing offers an outreach process to showcase your commitment to D&I and explain how you're putting those principles into action.
That might be through changing your talent acquisition strategies, creating new workforce reward systems to improve staff retention, pivoting on your brand messaging, or even investing in community projects that resonate with the product or service you sell.
Tell your story, give your brand a personality, and keep yourself accountable and transparent, and the impact on your reputation with staff, competitors and clients can grow exponentially.
Clients buying from businesses that reinforce their drive to address social inequalities or environmental issues are 57% more likely to stay loyal because your efforts make a profound difference in how they view your company's value. Read more about B2B social media here.
- Use Digital Marketing to Develop Hybrid Experiences
Over the pandemic, we've all shifted into primarily digital communications, with virtual meetings and cyber conferences the norm in many sectors.
It's also very likely that isn't going to change any time soon, with about 75% of executives planning to invest in hybrid client communications in the year ahead.
There are, of course, benefits to in-person meetings.
Still, if you offer a digital alternative, you make it easier and more convenient for customers to get involved and personalise how they interact with your business.
Much depends on your target buyer persona, which apps or platforms they use, and how they feel most comfortable engaging, so seeking a little feedback can go a long way to shaping client experiences that will exceed their expectations.
- Focus on Video Marketing Content Over Static Graphics
We've just talked about the digital communications boom, which means that people spend a lot more time consuming online content or establishing dialogues online over in person.
Video content is an ideal opportunity to take it beyond your everyday marketing graphics and provide a glimpse into your brand behind the scenes - think:
- Short-form social content introducing team members to make your business feel more personable and approachable.
- Footage of your products or services in action - perhaps showing the development, design or testing process to ratify your sector expertise.
- Explainer videos or interviews highlighting key features and the benefits they offer to your clients.
Ideally, videos should be short and snappy, packed with personality, and be designed to jump on the trend whereby 88% of marketing professionals plan to increase their video content in 2022.
You don't need to outsource to a pricey production team. You can produce a high-quality video within your own team, which often feels more authentic and engaging than anything hyper polished.
- Play the Influencer Game the Right Way
B2B influencer marketing is on the rise, as more industries recognise the advantages available of aligning their brand with a well-known industry professional.
However, it's a more nuanced marketing technique than B2C, concentrating on micro-influencers with smaller followings but a more targeted audience.
There are many ways to introduce influencer marketing. You could start gently with interviews with a respected expert examining a product or by asking for a reviewer to provide an independent opinion on your service quality.
The trick is to approach talented influencers (who very likely don't identify that as their job role!) with a loyal, high-engagement viewer base as a more targeted investment.
If you're concerned about returns, it's worth noting that your ROI on B2B influencer marketing hits an impressive 10:1 ratio compared to conventional paid advertising.
6. Invest in the Quality and Context of your Social Media Content
Fantastic quality content, posted less regularly, tends to perform far better than continual, low-value posts that tick a box rather than fulfilling a need.
If you want to boost your marketing results, 2022 is the year to consider the variety of tools and features on offer and utilise all the ways to engage - think reels, short videos, carousel image banks and stories.
While you don't necessarily need to create different visual content for every potential touchpoint, you can select those features your customers are most likely to use and pour your efforts into targeted content outlets.
Around 74% of social content posts are visual, and you can mix it up with quotes from your team, extracts from your industry articles or background info about new things you're working on to keep it engaging.
- Design Content Specific to Each Channel
Businesses that want to make their mark need to think beyond the basics to engage in each platform as a standalone marketing exercise.
You can certainly cross-post and replicate content, but it's essential to think about the expectations of your audience on different apps and feeds and how to use the tools available to create the most impact.
Reposting identical images often doesn't work - for example, if you cross-share an Instagram post to your Facebook page, the caption looks clunky and awkward.
It's far better to post the same content independently and use features like location tagging to improve visibility.
We'd also suggest thinking more about stories and brand background rather than using purely sales-focused content.
Illustrations, user guides, tips, advice and client reviews are all snippets of information to add variety to your content. There are tons of options, mixing up infographics with GIFs, stories with feed posts and 360° imagery with carousel photo albums.
Adding external links can work against you since an algorithm won't prioritise content that takes a user elsewhere, so you need to stay on-platform and tailor each content publication to meet your customer where they are
Using Our 7 B2B Marketing Trends for 2022 to Generate Results
As we've mentioned, the most suitable marketing approaches for your B2B enterprise depend on a whole raft of variables.
Still, if you can slot some fresh inspiration into your strategy, you'll be better positioned to see enhanced results.
Ultimately, it's up to you which trends you feel resonate with your brand and where you think you can make the most significant impact on your target audience.
For more ideas and help to craft a customised B2B marketing strategy to hit all of your 2022 targets, please get in touch with the B2B marketing experts at Tiga.
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