B2B Marketing Trends you Should be Using In 2018
Updated: Jun 4, 2019
It's time to evaluate your B2B marketing strategy. Marketing techniques are always changing, and you need to continue to grow and build on your strengths to stay at the top of the game. I have compiled a list of 12 tactics that I believe you should be doing in 2018 to keep up with the crowd and help boost your sales.
LinkedIn has been around for 14 years! It's crazy to think that only in recent years has it come on to our radar. LinkedIn grew from 400 million users to 500 million from 2016 - 2017 and has become a force to be reckoned with because these members are here for one reason and one reason only, business.
Why should you use linked to market your brand? LinkedIn has moved mountains beyond just being a channel where you show your employment status. The network is filled with business professionals and brands speaking and interacting purely on a business level, and for this reason, LinkedIn has become a marketers paradise.
It has become the perfect platform for professionals and brands to share their expertise. The users are generally here to use the network as a tool to help further their business interests, and professionals turn to LinkedIn over other platforms because they prefer their advice from experts. More than two professionals are signing up every minute, giving marketers endless opportunities to reach more professional people and brands.
The business only network allows you to share your insights and content; you can post your content and link it straight back to your website to generate new leads, talk about product launches or upcoming events keeping your brand in front of your connections at all times. Why not join some business-related groups where you can answer questions or post your own content to target people that are not in your network but relevant to your industry, this can also help show you as a leader in your industry and have your brand recognised and trusted, not to mention it is free to do!
LinkedIn can take your brand's marketing strategy to another level, and you can secure phenomenal results all based on the free marketing techniques I have mentioned. Of course, you can run ad campaigns, but this highlights the capabilities you have in the free marketing area.
Produce Video Content
Let's look at some video content statistics:
In 2017 video was named the most dominant form of content on social media
Research says 71% of marketers report video conversion rates outperform their other content marketing efforts.
62% of businesses who use video say video has helped increase the amount of organic traffic they receive.
You're 53 times more likely show up first on Google if you have a video embedded on your website.
Adding a product video on your landing page can increase conversions by 80%
98% of users say they have watched a video to learn more about a product or service
Consumers say they would prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it.
There is no question that video content has become a powerful tool and video is here to stay. Looking at the figures above, you can see the power and drive video had in 2017, and this will only get stronger in 2018. Brands will be building and pushing their video content in front of their audience, and If you want to stay competitive and relevant in your field, it is critical to incorporate video into your marketing strategy. Check out my article: Facebook Video Facts and Why Should You Use It.
77% of UK adults bought goods or services online using mobile devices.
Internet users are 5x more likely to watch video on their mobile device.
75% of business professionals have at least two mobile devices.
These are just some of the mobile statistics that you need to consider when executing your marketing strategy. Almost everyone has a mobile phone, so when they are on the go, and your email arrives, or they perform a google search and come across your website it is crucial that everything you do is optimised for mobile; otherwise, you could lose out on hundreds even thousands of potential new leads.
It has been repeated time and time that email marketing is one of the most effective B2B marketing methods, so why are some of us still not using it? 86% of professionals prefer to use email when communicating about business. Statistics suggest that email marketing is 40 times more effective than social media for lead generation. Overall, email marketing continues to be ranked as the best channel in terms of return on investment, so when clients provide their contact details, you should take advantage of this.
Personalisation is more common in B2C. It takes more time, and when businesses have thousands of leads to connect with it can be time-consuming. However, and this is a significant however personalisation in B2B has quickly grown, and people expect it, and I'm not talking about opening an email that says "Dear Jade" Yes, people want to feel valued, but they always want to be understood. Make sure that you segment your clients, take their data and see precisely what they want to hear from you and make sure all your communications are personalised to that individual's needs.
This is a fairly big one, Long gone are the days where a brand was just a corporate name. In recent years it has been shown that people like to know who is behind the brand, Who is the founder and CEO, how did they build the brand and so on. Make sure you shine a positive light on yourself, be active on social media, contribute to industry related discussions or attend events and conferences outside of your office. Be known to the public as an individual as well as a brand.
We trust people more than we trust brands. B2B is a tough cookie to crack at times. Businesses are propositioned daily, so how can you come up ahead of the other marketers targeting the same brand? Providing evidence of what you say you can do is a fantastic place to start. People need to trust where they are sending their money, so providing honest customer testimonials can make a world of difference. If you've got a great thing on offer, make sure your customers are shouting about it. You can include testimonials on your website, on social media, in videos or on blogs. You may even use them in communication with potential new clients. Praise praise praise!
Happy customers are usually more than happy to spread the word about how amazing your brand or service is. Customers like to feel special and valued, so why not offer an incentive by rewarding your loyal customers with discounts or free services if they refer new clients. Research over the last few years has shown us repeatedly that in the B2B industry, word of mouth referrals is the leading way to generate sales.
Why would B2B marketers use influencer marketing? I'm not suggesting you hire the cast of your favourite reality show to promote your brand. However, people will trust brands more when someone else is raving about how great they are. Influencer marketing has come quiet away in B2B marketing. There are many benefits of using influencer marketing, It can add an authentic voice to a brand, Increase the amount of content you are able to put out on your own and you can reach a new audience which will hopefully generate new leads. There are tools like TweetReach, FollowerWonk and Buzzumo to help marketers find industry influencers who fit in with their brand.
Most of us are probably using multiple digital marketing channels: Email marketing, Facebook, LinkedIn, AdWords, SEO etc. It is no surprise that marketers tend to focus more on individual channels. The sheer volume of options available means we are faced with an ever-growing number of tactics, so a solid strategy and an integrated approach to all channels is absolutely necessary.
You should always look for ways to guide your audience to your other channels as those channels can help to strengthen their relationship with your brand. For example, you could encourage your blog's audience to interact with you on Twitter. This is a way for them to hear from you more frequently, and they can quickly contact you, bringing you closer to your lead.
Drop The Growth Hackers
Are you wasting your marketing budget on growth hackers? If so, then you should stop! Research shows that growth hackers are not always what they promise and what good is it to your brand, blog or social account if it is full of hundreds of leads who have no interest in your brand or service? Spend your money and time focusing on other marketing techniques that will generate solid leads.
What good is it if you are a brand which is known for producing great headlines but not delivering on them. What if one day you did deliver, but no one clicked your links because you were known for clickbait. Moral of the story, make sure your content is what you promise!
There you have it, My top tactics for you to adapt in 2018. Marketing is fierce and fast, keep up to date with all the latest by following me on twitter @jadekinsella88.