Industrial marketing: strategies for success in B2B companies
Industrial marketing is a form of B2B marketing (or Business to Business, from company to company). Its goal is to raise awareness of the value of industrial products and services and ultimately sell more to business customers.
Even when it occurs between companies, buying and selling always involves human beings. Modern industrial marketing strategies cannot lose sight of this fact, but we must also take into account that we all behave differently when we buy in our private lives from when we acquire something for our business. This difference is the key to a successful B2B industrial marketing strategy.
Industrial marketing: what companies want
B2B selling presents totally different challenges:
- Products usually have a high cost.
- The target audience is small, but the lifetime value of each customer is large.
- The sales process is long and requires multiple interactions.
- The purchase decision is very considered, and usually goes through several levels and different professionals.
- Buying motivations are always pragmatic: survive, grow and save costs. There is no impulse buying.
Given these features, the main objectives of B2B industrial marketing are:
- Reduce perceived risk.
- Increase customer trust.
- Maintain the trust of the customer, who is often reluctant to change providers due to perceived risks.
Strategies that no longer work
It does not matter in which sector your B2B company works. Chances are the marketing strategy that worked the best ten years ago simply doesn't work at all today. Trade fairs, cold calls, advertisements in technical and professional magazines... They are all still valid strategies today, but digitalisation has completely changed the rules of the game.
Currently, most B2B purchase decisions are made online, and each customer does their own research when they decide they need a product or service: search the internet, compare, consult opinions... When they come into contact with the commercial department, they have already selected two or three possible suppliers at most. What's more, companies are increasingly making their purchases directly online, and many professionals prefer not to interact with a sales person.
With the digital revolution, marketing has gone from being a support to the sales team to carrying the weight of much of the sales process itself.
Industrial marketing strategies that work best in 2022
A clear pricing policy consistent with the characteristics of products and services is one of the best ways to gain the trust of the B2B customer. Contrary to what some still believe, low prices are not the main purchase decision-maker for company customers. However, clear and easy-to-understand conditions are one of the most valued factors.
Personalise the customer journey
B2B buyers are increasingly looking for experiences close to B2C, with more personalised interactions that help them discover the products and services that best suit their needs. For this, it is necessary to develop a conversion funnel that accompanies prospects from the moment they first visit the website until they finally make a purchase and thus become customers.
CRM automation tools such as Salesforce and its Pardot solution, which allows you to monitor the leads behaviour and use its lead scoring system to identify those that are most likely to make a purchase.
Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to attract, retain and drive purchase actions among B2B audiences. For this, it is necessary to create valuable, attractive and relevant content consistently over time. These can be distributed through social networks, blog posts, newsletters, downloadable studies, infographics, webinars...
Take full advantage out of LinkedIn
It's no surprise that LinkedIn is the most used and effective social network for industrial marketing. The best for distributing B2B content, adding value to buyer personas and creating a relationship with them, with the support of LinkedIn Ads. Slideshows are a type of content that is very successful on this social network and is underused by industrial companies.
Invest in digital advertising
SEM advertising campaigns on search engines, banners on specialised websites, promoted posts and ads on social networks are four digital advertising strategies that usually offer a great return on investment in the B2B field.
It is one of the oldest digital marketing mediums, and yet it is still among the most effective. Email marketing is the cheapest and easiest way to support other strategies such as content marketing or the conversion funnel with a high level of customisation for each client.
Rely on experts
One of the main difficulties of modern marketing is its complexity and the high level of specialisation required to get the most out of each tool. For this reason, it is recommended that B2B companies have a specialist partner in industrial marketing such as BCM Marketing, to whom they can entrust all or part of their strategy.