Whether you are new to B2B marketing or an experienced vet, we all struggle with coming up with finding B2B marketing strategies produce positive ROI.
A good B2B marketing strategy will be scalable – it is as effective on the small scale as it is when you do it at a large scale.
While the tried and true methods that have worked in the past are definitely still relevant, some new tactics are also emerging.
Here are 25 B2B marketing strategies that you can start using today:
1. Content Marketing
The keystone of many B2B marketing strategies tends to be content marketing.
Because it serves so many purposes.
Let’s take a step back and understand what B2B marketing is all about…
Yes, the ultimate goal is to generate warm leads for a sales team. However, before we get to the bottom of the funnel, we have to look at the top.
And what drives people’s interest in your product or service compared to your competition’s?
Content marketing is a fantastic way for a B2B company to display that they not only have a fantastic product but that they are a well-respected voice in the field.
If a tree falls in the forest, but no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?
Perhaps this would be better stated as “if a B2B company puts out a ton of amazing content, but no one reads it, did it really exist at all?”
If no one finds your content, then it will have zero value.
Yes, you could put money behind paid ads, and you probably should.
However, the best way to get readers to your content is by optimizing your site and content for search – SEO.
The practice of search engine optimization is constantly changing.
That’s because the algorithms that govern which pages show up at the top of search results are also constantly changing.
As a B2B marketer, you have to keep up-to-date with the latest trends regarding SEO, or else you’ll lose out on precious traffic to your competition.
Some fantastic SEO-focused blogs you should be reading include:
These blogs are your best resource for finding out the latest trends, as well as news about new algorithm updates and other important issues regarding SEO today.
There is one thing that is almost a 100% guarantee – your potential customers have email and read it daily.
That’s just a fact.
So, if you have some sort of apprehension about leveraging email marketing because it might come off as “spammy” you better let that go ASAP.
It’s only spammy if you are spamming people.
B2B email marketing comes in two basic forms:
When someone comes to your site and gives you their email address in return for something like an eBook or access to a webinar, they are now an inbound lead
Once their email is collected, you are now able to nurture them with email marketing.
Since these leads have essentially raised their hand and shown at least a modicum of interest, the type of content they will get will be different.
In general, you should be leveraging some sort of tool for this kind of email activity.
Otherwise known as “cold emailing,” this type of B2B email marketing tactic requires real effort, or else you risk falling into becoming just another spammer.
And you don’t want that.
Cold email outreach can carry with it one of the highest ROIs of any B2B marketing strategy.
But, in order to make it a success, you have to make sure the person on the receiving end does not feel like they are being reached out to be a robot.
That means that, even if you are sending emails en masse, you have to make sure they have context for the recipient.
The latest trend in B2B marketing is Account Based Marketing (ABM).
However, this is really a tried-and-true tactic that has been repackaged in a new, sexy title.
Account Based Marketing is a tactic in which a marketer first identifies the “accounts” (companies or individuals) they want to convert. Then, contact information for these people is collected and they are put through a well-constructed marketing campaign.
One of ABM’s greatest benefits is that, due to the fact that the prospects have been hand-picked, the sales process tends to be quicker and more efficient.
B2B Account Based Marketing leverages many channels – however, email marketing tends to have the greatest focus.
5. Virtual Chat
One of the latest crazes in marketing, in general, is the use of virtual chat or chatbots on your website.
When they first hit the scene, they were often used by B2C companies rather than B2B.
However, these have proven to be amazing tools for B2B marketers when done correctly.
The main goal of any B2B marketing strategy is to generate qualified leads and virtual chat gives you the ability to both interact with engaged visitors, as well as qualify them on the spot.
6. Direct Mail
Yes, you read correctly.
Mail, as in snail mail.
It might be old school, but this marketing strategy having a renaissance of sorts.
B2B direct mail marketing is a great tactic when coupled with other outreach methods, such as outbound emailing.
However, just like emails, direct mail should be contextual and relevant to the recipient.
Try sending some sort of gift, perhaps something that you know they like – such as a poster of an athlete on their home team.
7. Banner Ads
Though they are becoming increasingly expensive, banner ads still have great potential for B2B marketing.
Rather than putting your resources towards banner ads through display networks, which can be expensive and provide poor performance, try approaching the blogs you want to be seen on directly.
Often, these blogs will have advertising options that include display ads.
By doing this, you will be able to target the exact audience you are looking for and not rely on algorithms.
One strategy is to look at where you are getting traffic from – is there a blog that once mentioned you that is still driving traffic to your site? Is that traffic converting?
If so, reach out to them – see if you can get your banner on their site.
Clearly, they have an audience that is interested in your product or service.
8. AdWords (Now part of “Google Ads”)
Trying to organically rank for those highly desired keywords can be a costly and time-consuming endeavor.
Yes, organically ranking is definitely the ideal, but sometimes it’s just not realistic.
That’s why AdWords still has so much value for B2B marketers.
If you’ve already outlined a list of high-value keywords, along with those powerful long-tail keywords, you should look it over and decide which keywords are your most valuable.
(If you don’t have such a list, now is the time to write it.)
AdWords is actually as much an art as it is a science. You need to understand how to craft AdWords ads that are of high quality, or else you will end up paying more or, even worse, not have your ads display at all.
Ever visit a site and then notice that you see ads for that very same site everywhere you go?
It’s actually a far more effective form of paid advertising than purely running banner ads.
Using services such as Google Ads or AddRoll, you can serve relevant ads to people at various stages of the buying cycle.
Some retargeting platforms enable you to dictate which ads are shown based on the sites that a visitor “dropped off” on, as well as suppress ads for people that shouldn’t see them – such as those people that have already purchased.
10. Inbound Marketing (Lead Generation)
Leads, leads, and more leads.
That’s what B2B marketers are after.
One of the most tried and true tactics for lead generation is Inbound Marketing.
That is, attracting potential visitors to your site with great content, getting them to fill out a form (in exchange for a piece of content), and then marketing to them as they move through the buying cycle.
Well, that’s nice in concept, but how do you generate leads.
That’s a topic that could have an entire encyclopedia written about it.
The two most important things to focus on for generating inbound leads are:
- Have awesome content that establishes thought-leadership in your niche
- Optimize your site for converting traffic into leads
Optimizing your site for conversions includes adding forms and website popups – though this must be done tactfully, or you will annoy your visitors.
Sometimes, you want to go straight to your prospects, rather than wait for them to come to you.
That’s when lead prospecting comes into play.
B2B lead prospecting can be done in many ways, but you will always first need to have defined personas of the types of people you most want in your sales pipeline.
With those personas, you can go to places like LinkedIn to find prospects that fit your pre-defined personas.
With those names, companies, and job titles in hand, you can head over to Hunter.io to find their potential email addresses.
On its face, this is a simple process. However, there is a lot of complexity to it and it can be time-consuming – unless you have a defined process to follow.
The real work comes when you begin reaching out to those prospects; your communications with them cannot seem templated.
You have to create context in order to get their attention.
As mentioned earlier, establishing thought-leadership is one of the most important aspects of B2B marketing.
Quora, a social network where people ask and answer questions, is the perfect vehicle for doing it.
Quora has over 100 million visitors each month.
Take some time every week to go through questions within your space and answer them. Make sure to be as in-depth as possible.
Then, ask your work colleagues and friends to upvote your answer so that it will get to that coveted #1 spot.
Make sure to include a link back to your site or the post that you are summarizing with your answer.
13. Blog Commenting
This is another tactic that, if done incorrectly, could end up being straight up spam.
However, when done thoughtfully, blog commenting can be a great way to drive relevant traffic to your site.
You should set aside 30 minutes every day to visit the top blogs in your industry. Find new posts that are somewhat related to a post on your blog. Then, make a comment on the blog relating the post with the one you created and share a link.
You should also check Google news search daily for relevant blogs to comment on.
14. Facebook (Facebook Groups)
While a less obvious match for B2B marketing than LinkedIn, Facebook still has significant potential.
Beyond the standard updating of company pages, a new channel within Facebook is giving B2B marketers greater opportunities to expand their reach.
It’s called Facebook Groups.
While not “new” per se, it’s only now gaining traction amongst B2B marketers as a way to build a community and create an engaged audience.
With LinkedIn Groups falling into mediocrity (for now), Facebook Groups are wide open for B2B marketers.
Building a community takes time – it won’t happen overnight.
However, if you keep at it, you will reap the rewards.
Twitter isn’t just for reading the President’s latest tweet-storm.
It’s actually a fantastic distribution channel for content – you just have to know how to get that content in front of the right people.
B2B Twitter marketing should not be an after-thought, it needs to be finely planned and executed.
Make sure you thoroughly research your niche – find out which Twitter accounts have the most followers and engage with them as much as possible, even if they are competition.
Also, research hashtags – make sure to use them in your tweets when distributing your content.
Tweet on a regular basis – multiple times a day.
And not just your own content, you should be curating content as well.
As the pre-eminent professional social network, LinkedIn is an obvious choice for B2B marketers.
Marketing on LinkedIn can take many forms, and upcoming changes to the platform mean that strategies will have to change, too.
Having a wide network on LinkedIn is a huge asset, particularly if your connections are in positions and companies that could be potential sources of revenue for you.
That’s why leveraging your personal profile tends to have greater benefit than a company page.
Not to say that a company page should be ignored – it should not. Your company page should be constantly updated when you publish new content or have a new announcement.
However, with your personal profile, you have much more to work with.
From long-form content to video and hashtags, leveraging your personal profile can be a great marketing strategy for B2B marketing success.
Let’s not forget about LinkedIn Groups, though.
In years past, LinkedIn Groups provided an amazing channel for B2B marketers. However, they have since become a cesspool of spam and low engagement.
But change may be coming and LinkedIn Groups could potentially be something you should look at in the near future.
You can read more about the upcoming changes to LinkedIn Groups in this post.
In the world of B2C marketing, Pinterest has become the latest fad. However, this has not fully made its way over to the B2B side.
And, frankly, it might never make it at all.
However, part of being a good B2B marketer is trying to be where the audience is before they even get there – so you have to put some effort into Pinterest.
A good strategy for getting started with B2B marketing on Pinterest would be to create an image for each new post you make and pin it. Make sure to superimpose the title of the post on the image so that people can easily know where they are going.
This can easily be done on Photoshop, or you can also check out Canva.
Got infographics? Great, use those on Pinterest as well.
Pinterest is likely to become a very widely-used marketing strategy for B2B, so get in on it before everyone else!
Additional B2B Marketing Strategies
Other B2B marketing strategies you should consider include:
- eBooks/White Papers
- Branded company swag
- Social bookmarking sites
- Facebook advertising
- LinkedIn advertising
- Pinterest advertising