The Best B2B Marketing Strategies: a Comprehensive Guide for Marketers

Apr 04, 2024 by Mark Baines Category: Knowhow

If you want your B2B company to achieve the success it deserves, you need to have a strategic and cutting-edge marketing and communications plan in place. By doing this, you can capture the attention of those key decision-makers, highlight the value your organisation offers and generate more revenue.

However, unless you’re a professional marketer, you may be struggling to create your B2B marketing plan.

You’re not sure how to get started, feel confused about which platform you should use, or perhaps you’ve already developed an innovative B2B marketing strategy but, despite your efforts, didn’t get the results you wanted.

If so, this article is for you. We’ve created it to help you understand how to build an effective B2B marketing strategy from the outset, without confusion or frustration.

Today, we’re going to start working from the ground up with the basics. What are the main challenges that prevent businesses from creating and implementing successful B2B marketing plans? How do you start creating your own marketing plan? What do you need to consider?

Join us as we give you the answers to these key questions and explain how to create the best B2B marketing strategy.

Why do many businesses struggle to create their B2B marketing strategies?

Before we share our best marketing strategies for B2B, let’s first look at what can go wrong when businesses try to create their marketing plan. By learning what they are, you can set solid foundations, avoid many amateur marketing mistakes and ensure your B2B strategy delivers maximum ROI.

Here at Marcom, we work with a wide range of businesses and have seen first-hand how challenging it can be without having expert advice and support. So why does this happen?

1. Digital marketing can feel confusing

Many of our happy clients share that they felt confused when they tried to develop their B2B marketing plan. They weren’t sure what approach they should take, which marketing channels to use, which metrics to focus on and how to bring it together into a marketing strategy.

This can lead to confusion and a general feeling of lack of control. Additionally, when businesses’ approach to marketing strategy is unclear, any marketing efforts are less likely to deliver optimal ROI.

2. Companies aren’t clear on their goals

A lack of clear goals is another obstacle that prevents businesses from creating and implementing successful B2B marketing strategies. Without this clarity, it’s always harder to develop a strategy and even more difficult to implement it.

3. B2B marketing isn’t taken as seriously as it should be

Even with an innovative B2B marketing strategy in place, many companies fail because implementation is never taken seriously. Many companies just tick a box and file the information in the metaphorical bottom drawer, never to be seen again. Without action, there’s no possibility of marketing success.

4. There’s a lack of communication

Often, we see that even when businesses do have clear goals, they aren’t shared widely through the organisation and, sometimes don’t ever reach the marketing planning. For optimal marketing success, these goals and the marketing strategy must be communicated throughout the business and to stakeholders, their importance emphasised, and all team members should be encouraged to follow through.

If we can overcome these issues, get clear on goals and strategy, ensure communication between team members and place an emphasis on the importance of this B2B marketing plan, the strategy is significantly more likely to deliver results without stress.

With this strategy we can take control and eradicate certain problems in business. It also makes decision-making much easier. For example, if you are presented with an opportunity such as advertising or a partnership, you can assess whether this fits into your overall marketing strategy and make a decision based on your business goals.

How to build the best B2B marketing strategy

With the above in mind, let’s now look at how you can build your marketing strategy from the ground up.

1. Start with your goals

What are your goals for your business over the coming months? What do you hope to achieve? Take time to think about this first so you can create a solid foundation for your marketing campaign and gain greater clarity.

At Marcom, we help our clients through this process, encouraging them to share their ideas and helping to articulate them as goals where necessary. This could include lead generation, conversions or even raising brand awareness.

2. Get clear on your budget

How much can you invest in your B2B content marketing strategy? What budget do you have available? Ask yourself these questions to help identify how much it’s likely to cost to run a campaign around this area (we can also help with this if needed).

Here at Marcom, we believe anything can be done on any budget, so please contact us if you need further help.

3. Do your market research

Perhaps the most important element of developing a strategic marketing campaign is understanding your unique target audience and then targeting them with blog posts, case studies, social media content and other content marketing approaches.

That’s why it’s so important to conduct market research before you develop or implement your marketing plan.

Who are your current buyers? What is their background? What pain points or problems could you help them solve?

Look at objective data from your current CRM or database, then consider asking potential customers face to face. Aim to get as many responses as possible so you have a better representation of the market.

This should unveil key areas you can focus on when creating your content marketing strategy and help guide both the language and approach you use.

4. Competitor research

What do your competitors do? Are there any areas in which they don’t do well? Or in which they excel? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, you should also consider researching your competitors.

This can help you understand what works so you can adopt a similar approach or make tweaks that highlight your USPs and position you as the market leader in your industry.

5. Develop your strategic B2B marketing plan

Using the information gathered above, you can now start to outline your effective content marketing plan. Consider your objectives, which tactics you will use, how this targets your ideal B2B customer and how you can stay focused on your goals as an organisation.

Here at Marcom, we use a standard model for this called SOSTAC (situation analysis, objectives, strategy, tactics, action and control) because we’ve never found anything better or more comprehensive. If you need help, don’t hesitate to ask.

6. Get everybody on the same team

Once you’ve created your marketing strategy, ensure you share it throughout your organisation and make your objectives clear. This ensures that you remain focused on your goal, maintain an efficient and streamlined approach and gain maximum results from your B2B marketing efforts.

After all, we can write proposals all day long, but if your objectives are unclear or you aren’t committed as a company, it will be impossible to put this into action.

FAQs: best B2B marketing strategy

“Why wasn’t our B2B marketing plan as successful as we hoped?”

If you haven’t got clear on your goals, haven’t shared them with your internal teams and haven’t done your background research, your B2B campaign is much less likely to be successful. Other reasons include unrealistic objectives, a lack of long-term investment or sustained efforts or isolated planning.

“How long will our B2B marketing plan take to create?”

When creating a B2B content marketing plan, we should allow as much time as possible for creative review, amendments, copy and content, research and interviews and other contributions. Sometimes this can take longer than is ideal but it’s an essential step in creating a strategic B2B plan that works.

“What happens if there are changes in the market?”

Regardless of how brilliant your marketing plan is and how it is implemented, there will always be market forces beyond your control. This could include competitive activity, innovation, new technologies and even global pandemics. It’s important to leave room in your marketing plan so that you can adapt and realign should changes happen. A good plan will accommodate the unexpected and allow us to be responsive in the moment.

Summary: best B2B marketing strategies

Building the best B2B marketing strategy can be straightforward and confusion-free when you follow the steps outlined above. Before you start brainstorming potential blog posts, which social media platform to post to or push for results, make sure you lay solid foundations.

Start by considering your goals, competitors and target customers, get clear on your budget and then use this data and insight to create an innovative marketing plan. When you’ve done this, ensure all members of your team understand your objectives so you can work as an organisation to achieve your goals.

Need a hand or prefer to outsource your B2B digital marketing?

Give us a call today. We’re always happy to help.

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