B2B Marketing: How to successfully tap into new target groups
Whether with social selling, video advertising, a new online store or B2B platforms, if you want to win over new target groups while they're on the go, it is particularly important in B2B marketing to forge new paths and test innovative formats.
Precise target group analysis in B2B is a must
New sales channels offer the chance to significantly increase your sales potential. Additional sales channels can also help tap into target groups that were not reached by previous B2B strategies. However, with regard to new, attractive buyers and partners in particular, a precise target group analysis is necessary, because it provides valuable information on:
- where potential customers are active,
- what their characteristics are and how they distinguish themselves from other buyer groups,
- how they interact and communicate to find the right approach to B2B marketing,
- and how products and services must be presented in order to attract attention and interest.
A comprehensive analysis – ideally based on relevant personas – creates the basis for an efficient B2B marketing strategy that takes the habits, needs and buying behavior of the target group into consideration.
Social selling offers new perspectives for B2B marketing and sales
The importance of social networks as marketplaces, both for products as well as digital and traditional services, has grown rapidly in recent years. In this context, the concept of social selling allows you to reach new target groups effectively. With social selling, you use social media to
- identify and select the right prospective buyers,
- make contact with your target group,
- develop an understanding for the needs of your prospective buyers, and
- maintain your contacts on an ongoing basis and build long-lasting relationships.
Social selling therefore encompasses much more than just placing ads on Facebook and other social media channels. It’s a holistic concept that focuses on interaction and building trust – all the more important for the B2B sector, where business deals often take much more time. Social media, with its various formats and possibilities for interaction, also gives you the opportunity to highlight your USPs via customized content marketing and to position your company as a trusted advisor.
Reach new target groups in B2B with video advertising
Contemporary and innovative B2B marketing doesn’t work without moving images. Video advertising is becoming increasingly important if you want to spruce up your public image and stand out from your competitors. As a cost-effective and significantly more tailored alternative to traditional TV commercials, video advertising is particularly well-suited to niche products and if used in the right advertising environment, can precisely target specific groups.
What’s essential here is the “mobile-first” approach, i.e. adapting and adjusting content for use on a mobile device. This kind of optimization particularly applies to the format, length, and content of the video. When creating video content, the specific features of the channels should also be taken into account, especially the recommendations and preferences of their users.
B2B online stores are gaining ground
According to the recent study “B2B-E-Commerce 2020 – Status quo, Erfahrungen und Ausblicke” (“B2B e-commerce 2020 – Status Quo, Experiences and Outlooks”) conducted by the ibi research institute, one in five B2B companies surveyed already generates more than half of their sales through online channels. A large proportion of the survey participants also predicted that by 2025, more than half of the companies will prefer to make purchases through B2B online stores or online marketplaces.
For B2B merchants, having an online store is becoming an indispensable part of their sales strategy: not only for reaching new target groups, but especially also due to changing purchasing preferences. Compared to paper catalogs or lengthy Excel lists, online stores offer customers enormous advantages in terms of speed and convenience. However, sufficient time and resources are needed to implement an online store, so that this investment will actually be utilized by customers in the future.
B2B platforms bring providers and customers together
B2B platforms such as wlw (“Wer liefert was”), FDB-Business, and Die Deutsche Industrie also offer great potential for tapping into new target groups. These B2B platforms let you do more than just present your company, products, and services. The portals also provide interesting options for increasing your reach. Another advantage: the functionality of many platforms goes way beyond just being a business directory and allows you to generate leads or direct sales, for example. Please note: the majority of B2B platforms offer both paid service packages as well as free registration and use, but the latter versions usually have very limited functionality.
Partnering up for B2B marketing
Referral partnerships and collaborations with other companies can also help you acquire new target groups for your business. Many B2B companies have a broad network of business partners who can offer promising access to previously untapped groups of prospective customers. You could send a joint newsletter to customers of both companies, for example, or plan joint events. Furthermore, participating in partner and benefits programs often offers an attractive opportunity to profit from the reach of your collaboration partner and gain recognition.
The bottom line
B2B companies have a wide array of opportunities to tap into new target groups, especially with online marketing. A precise analysis of groups of prospective buyers is required for planning specific marketing measures and selecting suitable channels. The potential of a large-scale multichannel strategy or the targeted use of individual channels depends on the particular circumstances of your company. In addition to making contacts, a key success factor for B2B marketing in a new environment is maintaining customer relationships, and thus building trust in your business.