Marketing within the B2B marketplace presents a number of unique challenges and opportunities. A lot of companies within this sector are making some pivotal mistakes when it comes to their marketing campaigns, and these are preventing B2B businesses from aligning marketing to their company needs and maturing their marketing practices. With that being said, read on to discover some of the most common B2B marketing mistakes so you can discover whether your business is guilty of making any of them and what you can do to rectify them…
Not aligning sales and marketing
Sales and marketing need to align if you are to reach your company-wide objectives. One of the biggest mistakes businesses make is by keeping these departments separate. Instead, explore the possibility of having a service level agreement between both the departments so they can work together to master the service provided to customers and prospective customers.
Using black hat SEO techniques
It is surprising how many companies today are still using black hat techniques to try and get to the top of Google’s search result pages. This means using approaches that go against the search engine’s policy and, therefore, trying to cheat your way to the top. This approach may result in quick, short-term results, but the long-term impact can be devastating. You will be penalized by Google and it will be incredibly difficult for you to re-build your ranking. Some common black hat techniques include incorporating white text within your website andkeyword stuffing. Instead, you need to build your SEO ranking naturally so that it is sustainable.
Not cleaning up your database
When was the last time you cleaned up your database? If the answer to this question is never or a long time ago, you have found out where you are going wrong. Having a data strategy is a necessity, yet so many businesses fail to do so. You will have no doubt heard that B2B data decays a lot quicker than B2C. In fact, around a quarter of your data will be dead in a year or so. This is why it is pivotal to have a data plan and to clean your data regularly. Start by carrying out an audit, then de dupe, check your preferences and honor them, enrich your dataset, and put together a formal document regarding your data strategy.
Using outdated software that is holding you back
Nowadays, tech is at the core of everything we do, and marketing campaigns are certainly no different. What platform do you use to manage your marketing efforts at the moment? Is it effective? A lot of companies are using outdated systems that are holding them back because they do not enable them to track the results of their marketing efforts effectively. The best thing to do is look forsoftware companies that will build a bespoke platform for you so that you have something that is completely tailored to your needs, your consumer base, and what you require to move your company forward.
Using social media as a billboard
Social media should not be viewed as a billboard, i.e. an in-your-face advertising platform. Instead, you need to view social media as a two-way stream. If you use your Twitter and Facebook to simply broadcast your offers, you are going to put people off. Social media is meant to be social. It is about interacting with industry professionals, clients, and prospective clients. It is about providing a customer service platform. It is about engaging in topics relating to your market, rather than talking directly about what you do. There are some B2B brands that do great on Twitter and Facebook. Check out Oracle and Intel for some inspiration.
Not testing improvements
This is a massive mistake, yet there are so many businesses that are continuously making it. If you make improvements to your marketing strategy or your website in general, you should not make them live without testing them several times. You should use A/B testing to avoid any errors that are going to have a negative impact on your business. It is better for you to spot a problem than someone else.
Thinking that user experience is just for web and dev.
Last but not least, do you think that user experience is only for web and development? If so, it is time to adjust your mindset. UX should be applied to everything you do, from your products to your connections with leads. The key fundamentals to good user experience are: identify the needs of your users, understand your company’s objectives, and then make yourself aware of the technical constraints you face. It is advisable to set up your personas using a customer empathy map so you can fully understand your customers, the hurdles they face, and the buying journey they go on. This is especially vital when you consider the length of the process and sales cycle for B2B marketing when compared with B2C. Your empathy map should contain six components: how your customer feels and thinks, what they see, what they hear, what they say and do, their gain, and their pain. This will help you to provide an incredible user experience.
As you can see, there are a lot of mistakes that businesses are making with their B2B marketing mistakes. If any of the blunders that have been presented sound familiar to you, it is important to put steps in place to rectify these problems as soon as possible. Once you do so, you will notice that your marketing efforts improve drastically and you are able to make significant inroads within your industry.