From the previous part of the guide, you understand what kind of marketing strategy you can apply in your B2B business. So, here are some tips to help you develop a successful marketing strategy based on the forecasted market trends in 2022.
Remember to jot them down!
Top 10 Tips for Creating Effective Marketing Strategy in 2022
Tip #1: Explore your customers’ pain points
Apart from understanding your customers’ needs and wants, you need to look into their pain points for the reason you think that they will buy but did not. Pain points are the specific problems that are faced by and may be experienced by the customers along their buying journey. However, not every customer will have the same pain points and it all depends on the products and services offered by your company.
For example, some customers might need to deal with the pain points like:
- Financial pain point: Subscription plans that are extremely expensive
- Support pain point: The problem of not getting immediate responses from the live support
- Productivity pain point: Using the products is inconvenient
Thus, customers’ pain is the first thing that you need to discover, as that is what motivates them to purchase products and creates a sense of urgency to find a solution in the first place. This allows you to tailor the right marketing messages, which can help you to close more deals.
Tip #2: Generate social proof
Do not underestimate the power of social proof. Reviews, testimonials and case studies are important for a business to build a brand reputation. Most of the customers will look through the reviews and comments before they purchase any products and I guess you are one of them too! Reading through the reviews allows them to examine a seller’s credibility, to determine whether they are trustworthy and whether or not they deliver on their promise.
These reviews and testimonials can help your company increase organic reach by reaching a higher rank on Google. So, sellers often work hard to deliver the best services to their customers to avoid bad reviews, or even bury negative reviews purposely. But, do you know that bad reviews can also result in a positive?
As we know, everything has its good and bad sides and your website would look fake and untrustworthy with only positive reviews. In fact, poor reviews can provide depths and insights into a product. Responding to the bad reviews allows you to show your customers that you listen to them, genuinely care about them and you are willing to make improvements.
Tip #3: Maximize search engine optimization (SEO)
Before making a purchase, customers will browse through the search engine and check out the information about the products that they wish to purchase. Normally, customers will click through the results that are displayed on the first page of the search engine page results (SERP).
Hence, you need to put a certain effort into building SEO so that the visibility of your business and your products can be increased. If you don’t do this, searchers will not notice your company and you will never get an opportunity to have them evaluate you. Getting seen can be accomplished by creating informative content that matches the users’ search intent and inserting the keywords that have high rankings on SERP. For more details and tips on optimising your website on SERP, you can take a look at this article.
Tip #4: Use social media for business
Social media like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter and others are the free online platforms. More and more businesses are creating a public profile on these social media platforms to allow their potential customers to express their interest in the products in a simple and low-commitment way.
Moreover, these social media platforms have built-in analytic tools for businesses. These analytics tools provide you insight into how your posts and content are performing and help you understand the attitudes and behaviours of your audience, as well as study the marketing strategies used by your competitors and more. They save you a lot of time analysing the data as these analytic tools will convert the data into comprehensive charts and tables that are easier to read.
Tip #5: B2B Advertising
The strategies that we discussed previously, like content marketing and SEO, are free of charge but they can only be taken as long term marketing strategies. This is because they take time to build. If you wish to see faster results with better performance, you can allocate some budget to advertising, such as B2B advertising. If you do this right, you are able to get an impressive return on investment for your business.
B2B advertising focuses more on paid search, which is able to capture leads rapidly and effortlessly. Compared to traditional offline advertising, online B2B advertising is affordable and cost-saving. You will have more control over who sees your advertising, how much you pay, how they are formatted and more.
All you have to do now is figure out which social media channels your target audience uses the most and meet them there.
Tip #6: Word-of-mouth advertising
Word-of-mouth (WOM) advertising is an effective way to build positive feelings about your company’s products and services. Due to it being spread by referral from one person to another, it is also often known as a referral system. These customers help you promote your business to their network, either in person or via social media for free. It is not only cost-effective but also extremely valuable.
You will never know how big of an impact a single recommendation from someone can have on a company. Customers tend to prioritize personal recommendations given to them rather than other sources of information. The viewpoints given by the influencers, brand-generated content, friends or family can be very persuasive to them as they give them assurance about your company’s credibility. It can work very well with reviews, testimonials and case studies to ensure that your customers are satisfied with your company.
Tip #7: Influencer marketing
If you wish to promote your business through word-of-mouth marketing, one suggestion is to adopt influencer marketing. It should be a key component for your social media marketing strategy to raise brand awareness and drive traffic to your new sales funnel.
When an influencer’s viewpoints about your products are shared by viewers, your product message will be placed in front of a highly engaged audience. This can help get people’s attention and they will share the content as well. The recommendations given by the influencers tend to be respected and accepted by the public easily as they have already developed relationships and trust with their followers.
However, you need to select the right influencers for your marketing campaigns to convey the right brand message. Otherwise, you will not obtain the desired results. Instead, you will put your business reputation at risk.
Tip #8: Automate your marketing efforts
Based on the survey conducted by MarketingProfs in 2019, 92 per cent of marketing agencies are investing more time, resources and budget into marketing automation. With the help of marketing automation technology, you no longer need to rely on manpower to nurture leads for your business in 2022. Marketing automation can help you to manage all aspects of each campaign on a single platform, including email and social media marketing, mobile messaging, ad management and so on.
Marketing automation is time-saving as it will help you structure your duties and workflows by running all the automation activities itself, for example, sending the right messages to the right customers at the right time depending on the factors, such as website user behaviour, social media behaviour, email engagement metrics and more. With this, you are able to devote more time to more important tasks.
Besides that, you may also use marketing automation to construct a database that stores all the marketing data. It can serve as a focal point to connect all your marketing platforms and optimise the overall sales process.
Tip #9: Study your campaign analytics and use the reports you get
Tracking your campaign analytics and reports is the step you should not skip! Many businesses fail to achieve their goals because they lose sight of their business objectives. So, do study your campaign analytics on a regular basis.
By obtaining your campaign analytics results, you can know whether your B2B marketing strategies are effective or not, figure out the weakness of your strategies and improve them. These analytics can help you make the right business decision based on the current market trend and demand. As we know, customer behaviour has changed significantly since the beginning of the pandemic. Hence, we have to use these analytics tools to find out and carry out segmentation based on their interest and demographic profile.
There are a lot of free marketing analytics tools that you can use, such as Google Analytics, Facebook Business Suite, Instagram for Business and more. These tools can help you to track your return on investment (ROI) to check whether your profits are equivalent to your efforts.
Tip #10: CHOOSE THE RIGHT PLATFORM to market your products!
When we talk about marketing, there are three things that every business needs to get right, which is serving your customers with the RIGHT PRODUCTS in the RIGHT PLACE at the RIGHT TIME. Thus, the channels that you market your products on play a crucial role in B2B marketing strategy.
Marketing channels can be divided into two sections, which are offline channels, including in-person, over-the-phone and print advertisements, as well as online channels, which involve a digital connection between a seller and their target audience. So, what is the right place for B2B to sell their products? Online channels or offline channels?
Well, you can apply the hybrid marketing strategy, combining both online and offline channels and working on them simultaneously. You might wonder which online channel is the best for you to carry out your B2B business in 2022, I would say Alibaba.com is the platform that you can go for.
Why are we suggesting selling on Alibaba.com in 2022?
I guess you know it is hard to plan a B2B marketing plan compared to a B2C marketing plan. This is because the target audiences of B2B and B2C are so different. In addition, B2B has a limited market. It has a smaller pool of buyers compared to B2C, which can make it difficult for B2B sellers to reach a wider audience.
As you know, Alibaba.com has been a famous B2B platform for years. It has already been at the forefront of popularizing B2B eCommerce. As aforementioned, choosing the right channel is very important. If you market your products on platforms that are less known by the people, your products will definitely have a smaller chance of being viewed by anyone, unless you have a really great marketing strategy and brand reputation for your B2B business.
By selling your products on Alibaba.com, you are able to connect with millions of international business buyers and access a larger consumer base. In addition, your sales activity is no longer constrained by your sales team’s availability in 2022. You can even operate it for 24 hours to allow customers from different countries and time zones to purchase your products!
Besides that, Alibaba.com also has built-in analysis tools that can turn all the data into useful information which can help you get a clear picture of the current and future global market trends of 2022, customer profiles, and can also help you examine whether your marketing strategy is effective or not.
In fact, there are more benefits provided by Alibaba.com. To learn more, book a free consultation with us by filling in the form here. Our export experts are ready to assist you along your export journey!
**The information in this guide is extracted from Alibaba’s Business Blog: A complete guide to B2B marketing