When it comes to marketing their professional services to other businesses, firms face unique challenges. They must reach c-suite and director-level buyers who are often in a different purchasing phase than consumers.
In the digital-first era, B2B marketers can leverage new formats that resonate with audiences such as webinars, podcasts, and videos. They can also align marketing, sales, and customer service around a common source of account data for targeting and nurturing.
Marketing at the Top of the Funnel
Top-of-funnel marketing tactics focus on acquiring new leads. These efforts often include content that highlights how your business addresses a particular problem or pain point. This might include videos, infographics or other visual content. Brands may also opt to host webinars or create product comparison guides at this stage.
These assets communicate a company’s value proposition to prospective buyers and show how the brand can make an impact on a business’ bottom line. B2B marketers often use SEO to attract and engage with audiences at this stage. They might measure the number of impressions or click-through rates to assess campaign effectiveness.
Top-of-funnel campaigns also help establish a brand’s authority and build audience trust. This helps to encourage audiences to move forward in the sales funnel, where they’ll be more likely to consider your product when making a purchase decision. For example, Lexus created a series of videos to highlight the fusion of utility and style that defines their brand.
Marketing at the Middle of the Funnel
During this stage, your prospects are aware of their pain points and know that they need a solution to these issues. They are still researching their options and looking for a product that is tailored to their specific needs.
Creating middle-of-funnel content that acknowledges their problems and highlights your products as a solution is key during this stage. Use gated content like case studies, customer testimonials, and product comparisons to nurture these leads.
In addition to these pieces of content, you can also provide a way for your audience to contact you with questions. This allows you to build an emotional connection with your prospects and establishes brand loyalty. Tools like chatbots or FAQ libraries can help you respond quickly to any questions your audience might have about your product. These features also ensure that your leads have the right information to make a purchase decision. This makes the sales process a lot easier for everyone involved.
Marketing at the Bottom of the Funnel
Once you’ve attracted and nurtured leads through the middle of the funnel, it’s time to convert them into customers. During this phase, your marketing materials focus on highlighting products and services more directly. This content can include product demos, case studies and testimonials. It also involves educating the audience about what makes your solution unique from competitors’.
Some brands may even choose to “toot their own horn” by creating a side-by-side comparison chart in the bottom of the funnel to demonstrate how your product performs better than competition. This is an effective tactic to help close a purchase.
Other lower-funnel marketing strategies might include providing a free trial of the product to lure in interested prospects and build credibility for your brand. In addition, customer reviews and testimonials are often incorporated into digital marketing emails at this stage of the funnel. You might also choose to use retargeting ads to target customers who have visited your site or interacted with your business.
Building a Strong Brand
In order to stand out in a crowded market, it’s critical for B2B brands to know what their target buyers need. In fact, a brand identity can help them answer this question. Brand identity is a combination of associations consumers develop with a business’ products and services, its reputation and beliefs (brand values), and how it communicates with consumers (brand voice).
Unlike B2C marketing, which can focus on new product launches, B2B branding is often about building trust and credibility. This is especially true with new entrants to the marketplace.
For example, B2B companies can create thought leadership content like white papers that demonstrate their expertise. Moreover, they can also use paid ads to keep their name in search results when potential customers conduct research online. This helps ensure that they don’t miss out on opportunities to reach potential buyers. Moreover, it can help generate leads as well since word of mouth tactics only have a limited ceiling.