This may sound like blasphemy for those uninitiated in exactly what marketing is, but marketing is the same for any B2B business and whether you are selling airplanes to millionaires, billionaire's, or other companies, or whether you are selling payment processing solutions to growing businesses, the way that you approach engaging, and prospecting for leads is going to be same. The fundamentals of marketing takes the shape of a triangle, at the base of which we have the prerequisite of defining a target. Now, let's dig into that a bit more.
With every business with a marketing challenge, the objective is to connect the dots and define your target customer / client. This is the crucial step in actually creating a plan that you and your team can navigate. It is important to define who would most value the products and services that you have to offer, absent of this your efforts and resources are scattered and the outcome is subpar and disappointing. And if you're reading this you've probably experienced it.
Not everyone can be a client, not everyone can benefit or appreciate the value that your product or service brings into their system. Consequently the core effort in moving forward with any marketing activity, is to define and understand who is your target. When we say that marketing is the same for any B2b business, we’re reinforcing the knowledge that the functionality of any marketing effort is same.
The function of marketing is the same for any business
When prospecting, the goal is to find the person with the problem. Defining the type of client you want to engage on a continuous basis generally is the area where a lot of growing B2B companies may fail to apply commensurate amount of effort in relation to the other activities. Now many startups and many B2B companies do this quite well, they may hirer competent marketing consultants to execute on this.
When prospecting, the goal is to find the person with the problemsambuno
However as a growing business sometimes the resource may not be present to allocate for an outside marketing expert, regardless this is something that as an entrepreneur, as a business owner, it is quite important to grasp. The primary goal of understanding who you want to go after, is that from that definition, you can start to understand what their challenges are, and communicate to those challenges, in order to become the solution that your defined client needs and wants. Once a profile of the type of client / customers you want to go after has been defined, then it becomes all of a sudden easier to understand how to engage them.
Better understanding of your target, makes reaching them easier
Because think about it like this, if you define your client base as healthcare companies doing between 10 and 50 million a year and you define the scope of roles that makes decisions on integrating the product and services you provide, then your messaging, content and presentation can be focused on that defined group where they are. The function of marketing is the same for any business and we've just reviewed the first crucial step, zeroing in on your target.
When to implement marketing tactics and strategies
There are many tactics and strategies we can employ in order to engage a defined target. From email marketing, content development, social media marketing, television and radio advertising, the list can be myriad. Though due to there being so many options, it's then imperative to understand what works best given the particular type of business we’re involved in.
The only way to ascertain the most effective method, is to complete the first step discussed in the prior paragraph. Because deciding to use one marketing tactic or another, all depends on where your target audience is, who they are.
B2B marketing mistakes we encounter
A lot of the consulting I have with prospective clients boils down to the question of who is your target market? It always seems the crux of the challenge, and through this conversation, it helps them to grasp the fact that if they've adequately defined who they are going after then it is an easy step to find them where their clients are and how to engage.
Going back to the example above, we can reasonably arrive at on thought that if we want to engage healthcare administrators, communicating in their trade publications may result in a better ROI, than for instance radio advertising.
However again in order to define where to position our message, it goes back to knowing who we’re going after. The stage where we implement marketing tactics and strategies is the second layer of the whole marketing process, the first layer being adequately defining the type of clients / customer we want to go after. Afterwards then we move into the methods by which we employ to engage them where they are. The third phase in marketing is the active outreach process where we are implementing solutions and marketing that is actively engaging new prospective leads, a topic for another time.