Top 4 B2B Marketing Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Your B2B business cannot take off if you don’t have a sound marketing strategy in place and, more importantly, if you don’t optimize it from time to time. This makes sense as B2B marketing involves a cocktail of working areas—from lead generation and sales to content strategy and marketing analytics, there’s much to focus on to drive organic growth.
Let's look at the top four mistakes B2B marketers can fall into and also explore the possible solutions to boost user happiness in sales.
4 Top Mistakes in B2B Marketing & Solutions
Use the solutions below to eliminate four of the most common B2B marketing mistakes:
Mistake #1: Neglecting data and creating a buyer persona without it
Most marketers make the mistake of creating a buyer persona with half-baked information about their users. Or worse, they go with their “gut” or assumptions to create a generic persona. Unfortunately, this approach can lead to blind spots within the buyer persona and create a bridge between the user wants and the product’s offerings—a fatal direction for any B2B business that particularly thrives on subscriptions.
B2B marketers need to redirect their focus toward gathering real-time user information, in addition to driving customer surveys via mails, conducting one-on-one interviews, etc. Businesses may consider integrating live chat software within their websites to collect and track user information like CIENCE.
From capturing the user’s pain points to analyzing their current demands and buyer behavior trends, the live chat tool can offer a helping hand and empower marketers to drive data-backed decisions.
Moreover, with the data gathered, you can extract invaluable actionable insights and build an ideal customer persona (ICP) and an accurate user-centric buyer persona.
This buyer persona can then be utilized as a comprehensive and in-depth profile that includes important elements such as the user’s goals, pain points, demographics, etc.
Pro tip: Specific buyer personas allow you to target varied market segments and market to these unique groups via focused campaigns in a segmented, relevant, and personalized manner. In fact, research claims that for around 77% of B2B sales and marketing professionals, personalization builds better customer relationships, and for 55%, personalization can boost conversion rates and growth. Remember the Pareto principle, which says that 20% of your customers bring in 80% of the business, making segmentation a must-have skill.
Mistake #2: Not engaging in A/B testing
You could have a killer marketing strategy in the works and a knockout product offer, but if you’re not tracking its efficacy and performance, you’re essentially working blindly. This is why conducting A/B tests along the B2B marketing and product-building journey are critical.
When it comes to A/B testing your marketing campaigns, you should always try and strive to actually create a robust testing strategy right from the very beginning. Follow these three steps to build one:
- Plan extensively to understand which elements you want to test by brainstorming with your product, marketing, and CX teams. From keywords and CTA text to emails and blogs, everything can (and should) be tested.
- Do your homework on your competitors and conduct a competitor analysis to understand how your offering stacks up in the market.
- You’ll need to narrow down the testing options that you should be driving. This includes A/B testing, functionality software testing, etc. The more you test, the higher the chances of delivering a B2B marketing campaign that will keep your customers coming back for more. Here’s an example of A/B testing by POSist who wanted to lower the drop-off rates of their homepage. To do so, they tested two variations of their home page against a control.
The control looked something like this:
In the two variations shown below, they added relevant and conversion-focused content for the users to enhance the user experience and boost the conversion rates:
The results? Control was tested against Variation 1, where the latter emerged as the winner. Then, version 1 was tested against variation 2, where version 2 came out on top and led to increased page visits by about 5%.By optimizing and continuing to test your campaigns periodically to stay ahead of the pack, you'll be able to deliver value-driven campaigns to your users and improve the overall user experience.
Mistake # 3: Not focusing enough on your CTAs
Customers need to be constantly reminded to purchase your product or avail of your service. That’s the hard truth. And brands that fail to do so using dull, unclear, and non-creative CTAs are losing out on potentially interested customers.
The aim of any B2B marketing campaign is to ultimately get customers to take the desired action: signing up, contacting the company, downloading a demo, making a purchase, and so forth. To propel users to action and get them to click, you can leverage a host of CTA-related marketing strategies such as:
- Creating a bold and bright CTA button that stands out (literally and figuratively) as CIENCE demonstrates below:
- Wording your CTA "Get My Custom Price!" (as seen in the image above) instead of using a traditional phrase like "Get a Quote" instills a sense of urgency and excitement, and prompts the user to take an action.
- Using effective and value-driven content right next to the CTA button allows customers to know exactly what you want them to do next to get more information or subscribe:
There are literally thousands of ways to experiment with your CTA button and drive conversions. The idea is to ensure that your CTA is simple, subtle, and clearly visible across all your marketing campaigns.
Mistake #4: Not paying attention to your social media channel
Social selling has become an integral part of a robust B2B business marketing strategy. In fact, research claims that:
- 78% of salespeople who are actively engaged in social selling are outselling their peers who aren’t.
- 31% of B2B professionals say that social selling has empowered them to build deeper relationships with their clients.
- More than 10% of social sales reps have closed five or more deals due to being active on social media.
- Social sellers are 51% more likely to achieve their sales quotas—a big win.
- An overwhelming 92% of B2B buyers are willing to engage with a sales professional who is a known industry thought leader.
Clearly, ignoring your social media platforms and channels can lead to a sub-optimal marketing strategy and hurt your bottom line, to say the least.
B2B marketers need to find creative ways to get in touch with their customers on powerful platforms such as LinkedIn, for instance.
Additionally, your B2B brand’s social media channel should be up-to-date, active, and heavily involved in customer interaction and engagement—as effectively as CIENCE does on LinkedIn:
You can also publish informative and educative reports, white papers, e-books, webinars, podcasts, blogs, etc., across your most active social media platforms to establish authority and boost readership as CIENCE does with events:
Or here’s another fun example by Mailchimp sharing their annual report:
You can also drive #protips as Zoom does, which helps users to understand your offering better and makes their lives easier.
At the end of the day, the goal is to add value to your reader’s life by churning out relatable, useful, and timely content. You should also pay attention to your customer’s queries and concerns on social media and tackle them right away—or you risk driving negative word-of-mouth publicity. The quicker and more helpful your response is, the better your customers will be able to connect with your brand.
Create B2B Marketing Strategies That Work
Creating a B2B marketing strategy that converts and convinces customers can be tricky. Why? Because the B2B space is fast-changing and so are the needs of the customers. So you need to be on top of the marketing trends, understand your audience’s rapidly changing needs, test your marketing campaigns, and pivot with agility if you wish to stay ahead of the pack.
Avoid the top four mistakes outlined above and embrace the corresponding strategies to give life to a marketing campaign that delivers with every click of a button.