B2B marketing - Definition, types, and common strategies
We live in a generation that is all about technological advancements. This pursuit of advancements has changed the working of nearly every possible field of jobs. One of them is the business model of b2b. The business model of b2b (business-to-business) type is all about the business dealings between two respective companies.
Individuals from both sides represent their company rather than themselves and deal with each other based on their respective venture's needs. This is treated as a whole different business model as it is quite an important topic to deal with. This allows two respective established businesses to deal with each other to provide supplies in exchange for monetary terms.
In the transactions where this business model format is used, two individuals represent their respective companies and advance to finalize certain transactions that benefit both of them. Still, not just both of them as those transactions officially took place as between business-to-business.
Instead, these kinds of transactions occur when one of the two participating businesses, or both the businesses, finds each other's services or products useful and want to come to a finalized deal that benefits both companies in their ways.
Types of marketing models
Now that the basic summary of the digital b2b is completed, let's learn about its blood counterpart. Any transaction that occurs in the marketplace is either of the two types. A transaction occurs between either a company and an individual who wants to fulfill his/her own needs with the end product, or a transaction occurs between a venture and another venture.
In this, the individual representing both their respective companies advances that transaction keeping their company's best interests in mind as the end product. Both of these types of marketing models are specified as distinct ones. Both of these marketing models are as follows:
- B2B: This is a model created based on the transactions that happen directly between business-to-business. This business model is created for the efficiency between two businesses when an act of business takes place between them so that they can supply each other with their wants.
- B2C: This is a model of business created for the direct transaction between the producing company and the consuming buyer. IN transactions like these, the two individuals that are involved are the seller and the buyer. In this, the buyer is an individual who buys a product from the seller to fulfill the want of their own needs.
Both of these business models provide the buyer and the consumer with their wants and complete a transaction.
Ways to strategize
B2B marketing is one of the marketing industry leaders, and that is also because of quite a few reasons. First, B2b marketing at its core is based upon how a business approaches another business to provide the other company with the solutions to the problems they might be having in operating, management, financial, or any other section of work.
These are often the most befitting transaction as the solutions sold by your company would help the other company on an operational scale. Otherwise, the other company won't have bought it at all. In this whole process, the most important part is how your company approaches the other one, and this approach requires a whole strategy for it.
Many ways are already in the books of strategizing by which anyone can strategize for approaching a company. But the most useful strategy is the one you derive for yourself and your team according to your thinking by just knowing the basics of strategizing. These basics of strategizing are as follows:
- Be visionary about it
- Choose your buyers and the market
- Get to know your objective
- Get to teamwork
- Know your faults
Be visionary about it
"Everything and anything starts with a vision," said once a wise man and made a statement of the century. This is the basic tip for anyone who is starting to strategize about his/her approach.
Being aware of the objectives you have envisioned about lying during the meeting between the opposing company and yours is very important. This is required to be stated very specifically to the other team members, too, so that everyone can form the strategy by keeping in mind the company's vision.
Choose your buyers and the market
Compared to the service or product exchanges between two individuals befitting their sole purposes in a b2c business model, a b2b model has a very complex set of processes. In a b2c model, the audience is quite vague and open to buy anything that fits or satisfies their own emotional needs. Whereas, in a b2b model transaction, the buyer is a very qualified, experienced, or sometimes both personas in one person.
Since this buyer is also representing his/her company, he/she approaches the seller as the company itself. He/she only thinks about things that can prove potential in providing the company with an increase in efficiency or social media image. Due to this, narrowing the field down to the potential buyers that also seem to resonate with the thought process of your own company is very important.
Get to know your objective
After narrowing the field of yours down to the very few companies or maybe even a single company that you now intend to approach in the pursuit of probable sales and profit, now it comes to making sure that you give it you're all. This refers to you getting to know about that company's representatives as much as you can, from everything they prefer down to everything they disgust.
This would help you prepare for the final meet and let you present so that you don't end up offending them or, worse, end up making a fool out of yourself. This is a very important part of the process of preparing your strategy properly as these representatives are the ones who will be deciding the fate of how the deal between you and them will go.
Get to teamwork
After setting up everything in place and knowing all there is to know about your opponents, now it's time to fight your internal demons to become the best of yourself. This refers to the teamwork that your team now needs to get the best possible results.
As discussed in the first step, you and your whole team need to be on the same page to work properly as a team. This refers to that you and your team need to have the same vision in mind while thinking about all the creative ways to better your company's presentation in front of the other potential buyer.
The best way to gather the thoughts of everyone that are on your team is by setting up a campaign in which all of them can present their creative and out-of-the-box thoughts on the plate and putting them down on paper. This will help review all of those thoughts in the end so that the ones that can prove to be the best between all the other thoughts can be chosen and put into work.
Know your faults
This is another one of the important internal tasks that are quite essential for the betterment of your company. Scoring your brand sales in the first shot will not be a piece of cake and can fail by many chances. But that failure should not be seen as a failure but as a lesson that you and your company need to take for becoming better in this trade.
There are many key points that anyone can take from their failure. This is because their ability to fail shows their ability to rise too. The key points that a failure in a business-to-business deal can teach you what you did wrong include where you said what you shouldn't have, where the presentation started feeling boring, or where the one strategy you pulled off got wrong.
Most common b2b marketing strategies
Now that we have covered what b2b and b2c models are and how to create your strategies let's now learn about the most common strategies used by b2b specialists. Many strategies have been created after giving them a lot of thought, and these strategies have also been tried and tested by professionals.
This gives these marketing strategies reliability and the surety of choosing a strategy that can maximize one's chances of achieving their goal. Some of the b2b marketing strategies that have been said to work the best are as follows:
- Marketing through email
- Marketing through social media
- Marketing through content
Marketing through email
Email marketing has been successful in all the fields of advertising or marketing that is there is this sector of job. The b2b setup of email marketing does not fail the reputation of email marketing and is even called the best strategy to approach b2b transactions.
In recent surveys of b2b companies, it is found that nearly 93% of the b2b marketing companies use the method of email marketing for ads; this makes it one of the best options to consider while looking for strategies of marketing. But unlike the b2c sector, the buyers of b2b sectors are not that vague or naïve, which makes them hard prey.
This is mainly because the buying individuals in this sector focus mainly on the product or the service that can create either money, time, or resources for them, as these are the only assets that there can be for a company. There are many ways to perform the art of email marketing properly. Some of these ways are as follows:
- Composing the best subject lines: The internal subject lines are no different from the title of a book or story or a movie or a web series title. It not only gives a hint of what's about to come, but if written aptly enough, then it can also intrigue the receiver enough to open it.
- Embedding only a single CTA: CTA (call-to-action) is a button or a link embedded in the image, text, or animation present in the content. These buttons transfer the clicker of that button to a landing page so that he/she can be intrigued with it. Too much of these in a single email can confuse the viewer, so a single one is enough per email.
- Making them user-friendly: Most people operate their emails through their phones, so make sure that when an email of yours gets sent to a phone, it should perfectly sit along with its layout. This is very important as a bad first impression can end the potential customer's interest but could all harm your reputation in the marketplace.
Marketing through social media
Social media is the host to one of the biggest, if not the largest, crowds in the whole world. It spreads to all the corners of the world and has a crowd filled with people from every country, religion, caste, creed, gender without any restrictions. The role of a marketer is to advertise their products through ads in front of as many audiences as they can.
In b2b cases, the marketers try to find companies from the parts of the world that don't consist of the same amount of royalties in technology or any other sector. This lets them choose thousands and lakhs of businesses to choose from and then narrow their field from thereon.
Having a social media account for your business also eases your work as now, you aren't the only one that is responsible for finding potential businesses that are interested in buying your product or service through ads, as anyone can see your internal social media profile and can contact you by themselves if they are interested.
Finding such high-paying companies on social media and advancing all the processes there is not a thing that happens much, but that shouldn't be a problem in the non-virtual world. Many social media platforms show promise for the b2b marketers. Some of those social media platforms are as follows:
- LinkedIn: This is one of the biggest social media platforms filled with people of corporate and work-related backgrounds.
- Twitter: This is one of the most widely used platforms by most of the chief officers of any company and is one of the best places for b2b marketers to find possible clients.
- SlideShare: One of the lesser-known parts of Forbes, this is a great platform for b2b marketers to find legit entrepreneurs and CEOs along with other chief officers of many successful companies.
Marketing through digital content
One thing that is most common about company representatives is that they are quite many readers, and you can set this tide in your favor. This refers to the process of creating the means of marketing in the content that your digital website publishes or any other known media outlet publishes while mentioning you in it.
If embedded properly in content, many potential businesses can reach your company to know more about the service that it is providing or the product that your company is selling. Rather than just being used mainly for highlighting the product or service that is being marketed, the content should also consist of useful knowledge so that the viewer doesn't see it as a spammy web page.
SEO management also plays a huge role in this whole process as the content that has been published with your venture's web link in it won't be shown to others keyword search on a search engine until the topic's keywords aren't embedded properly in between the content.
So if written in the right and creative way, without any plagiarism, without any grammatical errors, and SEO keywords properly embedded in it, an article, blog post, or any other such content carrying web page can get your sales up. That being said, content is one of the best ways to market your company's products or services to the customers following a b2b model and those following a b2b model of business.
B2 b marketing is increasing as all its marketing counterparts and promises the aspirants a bright future for now. This job has also proven to be one that quite makes its job holder successful and experienced at the same time. The b2b and b2b marketing fields have quite many similarities in their working as many differentiating elements.
The field of b2b marketing is increasing day by day due to the customers such as the big companies that are trying to find ways to get even bigger, and new start-ups that are trying to find ways to get big and find a place for themselves in the one marketplace of the world.
About the author
Dennis Hoinkis has been working as a web developer and in online marketing since 1998. After building up a marketing agency and the exit in 2013, he consulted international groups as a freelance consultant. Since 2020, he and his team now offer staffing services in this field.
Dennis Hoinkis CEO, FSOM Group Corp.