Every B2B marketer knows the importance of effective research, messaging, and quality content. But the unique angle needed to reach and resonate with a target audience is less obvious. So what are the best Q2 marketing strategies for B2B?
Q2 and the rest of 2023 offer exciting opportunities for B2B businesses, but to succeed, marketers must shift from a product mindset to one of promise. Hyper-personalization is the way forward for strengthening brand loyalty and awareness. And that means quality educational content and effective search engine optimization. This modified approach helps retain existing customers and generate new leads.
In this piece, we explore the three latest marketing strategies for B2B businesses in 2023. These tips reveal the top B2B marketing trends and winning strategies to exploit them. You will also see how to optimize your marketing ROI by doing more with less.
B2B Marketing Tip #1 Focus on Hyper-Personalization
A common mistake in B2B marketing is to focus on the one-size-fits-all message. This strategy is hit-and-miss and relies mainly on chance. In contrast, personalization serves targeted messages directly to a particular audience. To achieve this, B2B marketers exploit historical, behavioral, and real-time data. They then create plans that address specific pain points (the problem) with practical solutions (your products or services).
There are four primary elements to successful hyper-personalization:
- Build segmented databases
- Use industry-specific messaging and terms
- Use target audience-specific messaging
- Be consistent in communication
Personalization in marketing is nothing new, so you may wonder what the difference is between marketing personalization and hyper-personalization when it comes to B2B marketing strategies.
The Four Elements of Hyper-Personalized Marketing
B2B marketers who focus on personalization assume to know what their audience wants. Generally, this is accomplished by creating customer profiles and buyer personas to use as guides when creating marketing messages.
In comparison, hyper-personalization doesn’t rely on the basic assumptions of a static customer profile or buyer persona. Instead, hyper-personalization uses a process of collecting, analyzing, and implementing real-time data into marketing.
Continual analysis of an audience: It’s how savvy marketers incrementally iterate their customer profiles and buyer personas with fresh data to craft more pointed and individual marketing messages. Let’s break down how they achieve all this.
Build Segmented Databases
All successful marketing strategies for B2B businesses utilize database segmenting. It’s a process whereby you divide your machine-readable marketing databases into relevant groups. That typically includes customer relationship management (CRM) and other collected B2B data that holds key identifiers. Segmenting data this way helps you create campaigns that deliver valuable content to highly targeted prospects or groups.
The six data segmentation types for B2B marketing initiatives include:
- Demographics: age, gender, education, occupation, income, etc.
- Firmographics: data used to categorize prospect organizations
- Behavioral segmentation: based on how customers interact
- Customer tiering: prioritizes engagement levels and potential
- Needs-based segmentation: needs, pain points, problems, motivations
- Customer sophistication: product/industry acumen
Database segmenting can also include sub-segments. Effective data segmentation ensures your value propositions talk to specific industries and pain points. So, when B2B marketers leverage segmentation, they can make better-informed decisions on the best outreach strategies and tailor communications. B2B sales teams also use segmented databases to help them give precedence to the best-fit leads.
Winning marketing strategies for B2B businesses ensure all content remains industry- or pain-specific. The segmented data used depends on whether the target audience is an individual consumer or a group. Just keep in mind that your ROI improves by accurately identifying and targeting the ideal customer profile. Only then can you tailor messages that truly resonate.
The industry-specific marketing plan is a simple and logical concept. Yet many B2B businesses still rely on the scattergun approach that simply doesn’t work. What does work is focusing on a specific market segment based on the industry or vertical.
Whatever the audience, create a unique business marketing strategy based on specific pain points. Keep in mind that your target buyer needs a product or service that solves a particular problem. Thus, your messaging should let them know you understand the issues and how to resolve them. Remember to differentiate your products or services from rivals.
Be Consistent and Visible
Keep your messaging consistent across all platforms. That includes your offline and online communications. The company’s website and social media profiles must maintain familiarity with your theme, brand, message, and tone. So review your website, Facebook page, and other social media content, fixing any inconsistencies and mixed messaging you find.
Create separate tabs, pages, and categories where prospects can learn more about your company and its offerings. Use multiple online platforms to emphasize your areas of expertise, highlight case studies, and invite interactions.
Here are five ways to keep customers and prospects engaged with your company’s content:
- Regularly post new blog content that is valuable to your audience
- Post news updates and tips on social media
- Show industry-related videos and podcasts
- Include links to valuable resources
- Offer industry-specific downloadable content
Target audiences take more notice of B2B businesses that are active online, and doing so is critical to compete with your rivals in the eyes of prospects. Another benefit is that the internet gives customers and prospects round-the-clock access to product information, updates, and support.
B2B Marketing Tip #2 Focus on Educating Your Audience
Marketing strategies for B2B educational content serve your target audience’s desire to be taught—not sold. The best approach is to focus on the narrative around how your product or service solves problems for the intended audience. That could be to save their time, money, labor, frustration, etc.
In addition, B2B educational content should reveal something new and exciting or not widely known to your target audience. Most importantly, your informative content must be easy to digest and seek to provide clear, actionable items to capitalize on new learnings.
The most effective educational content answers the following questions, at least in part:
- How does the product/service optimize or automate processes?
- How do I use it to the best effect?
- How easy is it to use?
- Does it save time, money, and labor costs? How?
- Why is your offering better/different than other solutions?
Successful educational content that fulfills customer needs shows you as a thought leader and thus builds trust with your audience. Of course, it takes time and must be up-to-date, but the ROI on your SEO’d content is worth the commitment.
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How Effective Is Educational Content for B2B Marketing?
According to data from the Content Marketing Institute, 77% of B2B marketers use educational content to nurture a target audience as part of an inbound marketing strategy.
B2B Educational Content Tips
Educational content informs and teaches a target audience about the benefits of a product or service. First, ask yourself if you offer anything that customers and prospects don’t already know. Or, maybe there’s an opportunity to upsell to existing clients? Once you know the why, the goal, behind your educational content, it’s time to define the audience.
Engagement metrics will give you valuable insight into the best formats, types, and channels to deliver educational content. That might be blog posts, podcasts, videos, infographics, and case studies. Most of your content should be bite-sized, easy-to-digest, and high-funnel-focused, especially with complex topics. And remember to include how the product or service helps and the problems it solves.
Here are six examples of helpful B2B engagement metrics:
- Customer behavior: website engagement metrics
- Content marketing engagement
- Email marketing, e.g., subscribers, conversions
- Social media, community interactions
- Video and podcast engagement
- Polls and survey feedback
There are many others, so prepare for some detailed analysis. Your engagement metrics will identify where your spending has the greatest impact and where to focus your efforts.
Client Retention Versus Acquisition
B2B educational content works before and after purchase. However, it’s better to focus most of your marketing plans on retaining your existing clients and customers. That’s because the cost of new customer acquisition 500%+ the cost of retaining existing clients.
This 2018 data breaks down the marketing channels most used for retention and acquisition.
|Customer Retention||Percentage||Customer Acquisition||Percentage|
|Social media marketing||37%||81%|
|Content marketing||32%||Social media sites||72%|
|Referral marketing||26%||Direct mail||66%|
|Display advertising||12%||Web banners||60%|
|Mobile advertising||8%||Mobile advertising||34%|
|Digital video advertising||7%||Aggregator websites||32%|
Analysis found a small 5% increase incustomer retention can increase B2B profits by 25% to 95%. And you have a 60% to 70% chance of selling to an existing customer compared to only 5% to 20% of converting a new prospect.  
The above data shows search-engine-optimization-focused content creation is a major part of acquiring new clients and retaining your existing clientele.
B2B Marketing Tip #3 Focus on Search Engine Optimization
Your online presence is more critical now than it’s ever been. The data confirms most B2B buyers now conduct online research to find products and services. This is why on-page SEO, off-page SEO, and high-quality content remain the best way to drive organic (free) traffic to your website.
However, many busy B2B companies have issues finding the time, expertise, and resources needed to manage effective SEO campaigns. Even if you produce great content, it’s of no use if your target audience never sees it.
The stats below show why optimized content is critical in Q2 2023 and beyond.
- 89% of B2B buyers rely on digital content to learn about a new product 
- 89% of respondents say highly relevant content influences buying decisions 
- 51% of B2B buyers value content offering data and analysis 
- 67% rise in the use of B2B marketing infographics over the past four years 
Do you rank on the first page on search engines for both global and local search phrases? If not, you are losing business to those who do. Most Google Search users only view the first page of results for their search query.
Being found online is critical to growing your business. It’s why smart firms partner with a professional and specialized B2B digital marketing agency like Bold Entity. Here are a few other steps you can take to improve your SEO.
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Conduct a B2B SEO Site Audit
A B2B SEO audit starts by assessing your website for technical issues and other ranking factors that may cost you SEO points, like duplicate content, broken links, missing ALT tags, missing or incorrect metadata, and poorly written and unoptimized content.
Working with a professional digital marketing partner, they can review your website to see where improvements can be made to increase your visibility online through Google Search. You can also conduct your own website audit using a tool like semrush’s Website Audit Tool or following Bold Entity’s Three-Part B2B Website Audit process. However, most SEO fixes are manual, so it’s essential you know what you are doing or work with someone who does!
Website Messaging and Layout Matter
Always create search engine optimized web content and site layout with your human audience in mind first, not the search engines. The good news is that search engine bots love visitor-optimized websites, so ignore any advice you may come across on gray- and black-hat SEO tactics and quick fixes. Sneaky tactics will harm rather than help your efforts and can result in long-term SEO penalties from Google for poor SEO practices.
Check that your B2B site makes a great first impression. It should load fast and display correctly across all device types, including smartphones.
Additionally, your site needs to be updated, have a clear message, be simple to navigate, and easy to interact with. If visitors can’t find what they need on your website in seconds, they will leave and click on a competitor’s website.
Analyze SEO Competitors
The idea behind SEO competitor analysis is to research your online rivals and their techniques. It’s a reverse engineering approach that reveals your competitors’ target keywords, backlink profiles, content strategies, and other success elements. You then apply the most useful data to your own B2B SEO campaigns. Also look for areas where your competitors are weak as they may represent untapped opportunities where you can get a leg up on your rival.
3 B2B Marketing Tips to Go From Boring to Booming
Applying these three tips to your B2B marketing strategy will take your campaigns to the next level. This approach will help you stand out and strengthen your brand message in Q2 and beyond. And the upshot is a shorter buying cycle, improved sales efficiency, and improved B2B lead generation.