During the past two decades, we’ve seen how digital marketing has evolved into a tool that any type of business can utilise. Because more and more people are vying for user engagement on the Internet, one can argue that it takes a strong online presence to be noticed.
So, whether your business is just beginning to take shape or you’re an established industry player, the wide scope of modern digital marketing can benefit your company in ways that previous generations never could have imagined. But why did digital become so popular in the first place?
These days, marketing is not just trying to promote whatever it is you’re selling. It’s not just getting people to purchase your merchandise once or twice. Targeted modern marketing techniques and customer channels can create a better buying experience for consumers that can make them loyal clients in the future, therefore increasing customer lifetime value.
Never forget that you’re not the only business offering a particular service or product. That’s why it’s crucial to create a unique experience both in B2C or B2B buying scenarios. These modern techniques don’t only promote your company and products, but also encourage brand loyalty among consumers in the long run.
B2B Digital Marketing Trends
With the recent advancements brought about by the Internet, digital marketing for B2B environments have flourished, and it’s up to businesses to decide whether to adopt these strategies or not. But which of the many digital marketing channels should you get?
The short answer is that different types of businesses can benefit from different digital marketing channel combinations. If you haven’t the slightest idea about B2B marketing and how it can benefit your company, the time to learn is now.
- Brand Awareness Over Leads
B2B digital marketing is gaining more traction among businesses, and it’s not just email marketing and outbound calling. Every year, more digital marketers are realising the importance of improving brand awareness in their respective campaigns. This is a huge departure from previous ideas surrounding B2B digital marketing, where its primary objective has alone been to generate quality leads for business.
Today, ROI is not only seen in the quantity and quality of leads, but in the ability of customers to deliver consistently. Though it would take a longer time for marketers to evaluate those factors, they would definitely ensure a more lasting relationship with loyal clients.
- Social Media
The rising popularity of social media has also enabled digital marketers to utilise different platforms that can cater to different types of people, even those who are not included in their target audience. The idea is that as long as it encourages brand awareness through content-focused initiatives, the campaign is doing what it’s supposed to do.
More than 63% of B2B marketers say that social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn are driving quality leads for their businesses. Email marketing, which has long been a staple strategy in digital marketing, only placed second, with 47% of marketers claiming its efficiency to drive leads. This only proves the fact that more modern digital channels get more attention from prospective consumers. Marketers are also taking advantage of the algorithm Facebook uses to place banner ads in front of users who are more likely to be interested.
If you want your business to stay relevant against the competition, then you better make your websites and digital marketing channels mobile-friendly. Almost half of B2B marketers say that up to 60% of all their websites’ incoming traffic comes from mobile devices. In relation to this, it’s high time to adopt a more mobile-friendly online presence that creates a more pleasant experience for visiting users on mobile devices.
When choosing between two businesses offering similar products, a customer would most likely pick the business that has a more mobile-friendly website which is easier to use and navigate.
- Artificial Intelligence and Automation
Another milestone this age has accomplished is the emergence of artificial intelligence. Paired with automation, AI enables businesses to develop more efficient customer support techniques, which in turn improves customer loyalty. Intuitive automation strategies can help create seamless transactions for clients, encouraging them to come back.
Unfortunately, many businesses that have digital marketing campaigns are not making into full use the latest marketing technologies. Still, the future is bright for B2B marketing as more marketing innovations are developed each year.
- Budgets Poised to Slowly Increase
As more companies are recognising the efficiency of modern marketing techniques, B2B digital marketing budgets are expected to increase in the next few years. Almost 60% of digital marketers report that they will increase their funding for B2B digital marketing campaigns in the next couple of years.
Meanwhile, almost half of marketers say that 10-40% of their overall marketing funding goes to digital marketing. This trend is likely to increase in the coming years, and so marketing managers should begin investing more in B2B digital marketing before they get left behind.
Which of These Marketing Channels are Best for My Business?
Now that you’re aware of what’s latest in the digital marketing industry, the next question is which of these new marketing channels can work best for your business and push your campaigns forward. Here are some of the best B2B channels to consider for your digital marketing campaign:
- Email Marketing – Considered as one of the oldest digital marketing techniques around, email marketing has definitely come a long way. Its main purpose is to provide information to a mailing list regarding a specific service or product, and then allow email recipients to take action. In order to keep this strategy effective, emails should not look like spam, but provide genuine information that readers would actually be delighted to know.
Some common problems of email marketing include insufficient tools for email creation processes, certain limitations of the business’ email service provider, and the lack of quality data that would keep readers interested.
- Pay-per-click (PPC) – PPC is among the most popular channels that can boost your B2B digital marketing campaign. Advertisers pay a minimal fee to a particular affiliate website every time their ads are clicked. One popular form of PPC is search engine advertising, wherein listings for a particular business or service get the top spots in relevant search engine results. With PPC, you are sure to get a high volume of traffic to your website, as long as your budget lasts.
However, one common issue when it comes to PPC is the poor conversion rate of website visits into profitable customers. That simply implies that more site visitors does not automatically mean more leads and profit. Obviously, if you want your paid listing to be noticed and your landing page to convert, they should stand out and be appealing to your audience.
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – This channel has gained popularity in the past decade. It optimises business websites in such a way that search engines are be able to crawl certain web pages because of relevant keywords or content more easily. The more optimised a particular web page is, the higher it will be listed in search engine results for that particular keyword/s.
Whenever a potential customer uses a search engine to look for a product or service, the higher placed listings have higher chances of getting clicked. In fact, research shows that about 95% of all Internet users click results they found on the first page of search results. When this happens, it produces what’s called organic traffic, compared to paid traffic.
One problem with SEO is that search engines change their algorithms quite frequently. This means months of work could potentially be affected by these changes, so it pays to keep up-to-date with the latest search engine algorithm trends.
- Social Media Marketing – The immense popularity of social media has developed what advertisers call social media marketing. The goal is simple: engage your target audience by providing valuable and interesting content about your business, products, or services via both paid and organic social channels.
By maintaining a close connection with followers through regular updates and posts, you will be assured that they remember your business whenever the need arises for them to purchase something that you are offering. You can also promote transparency by allowing regular customers to leave feedback for your products or services.
- Content Marketing – The phrase “Content is King” means no effective digital marketing campaign would work efficiently without useful content for the target audience. In content marketing, prospective clients are ‘lured in’ by digital marketers through valuable content – white papers, infographics, podcasts, blogs, case studies, etc. in order to pique their interest for them consider the company or business as a trustworthy authority figure.
Content marketing works best when paired with other digital marketing channels such as SEO or social media. SEO would not work without relevant content because it’s the content that search engines analyse in order to crawl web pages. Additionally, content wouldn’t perform as well if it didn’t have SEO and social media exposure to drive traffic to it.
Together, these three channels enable advertisers to cover a wider scope of the business’ target audience. In addition, these channels are effective not just to build a huge following on social media, but also drive relevant traffic to the company website.
- Video Marketing – Commonly considered a form of content marketing, video marketing channels are becoming more popular as streaming sites like YouTube are becoming more accessible to the public. These video ads usually come before or in the middle of streaming videos to promote a particular service or product.
Sadly, some advertisers abuse the use of ads in videos, resulting in disruptive advertising, which hardly helps a brand’s image. Video content should be well conceptualised and should target a particular need on the part of the viewer to keep them from clicking the ‘Skip this Ad’ button.
- Display and Banner Ads – Have you ever read a news article online and noticed some banner ads on the side columns of the web page? These channels are forms of PPC, although the focus here is to entice the reader through creative artwork, a striking message, or something that can usually be placed in a traditional billboard ad.
Banner ads are usually colourful and use fonts that are easily recognised. As long as they’re not disruptive to the audience’s viewing or reading experience, they’re good to go.
These are just a few of the different B2B digital marketing channels that you can use for your business. Remember that not all of them can provide the results you want, so you will need expert digital marketers to give you an idea which will work, and which won’t.
Adopt Modern B2B Digital Marketing Channels Today
As the digital marketing industry faces more modern changes, expect more improvements on how digital channels are used for advertising. If there’s something we can learn from past B2B trends, it’s that marketers will always strive to find new ways to get their message across. And that’s exactly what will happen with B2B digital marketing channels.
As someone in charge of your company’s business marketing strategies, it is high time to fully embrace the benefits of modern marketing channels, and slowly minimize your dependence on traditional ones. Not to say that traditional techniques are obsolete; it’s just that as the world becomes more geared towards the future, your business or company has to prove to prospective clients that yours is doing the same, and that you’re not getting left behind.
Fortunately, starting a B2B digital marketing strategy is never difficult as long as you’re working with the right people or the right marketing partner. Take the plunge today even if your competitors aren’t doing the same. Advertising methods will inevitably shift towards modern techniques, and there’s no stopping them.