If you want to build a successful digital marketing strategy, you'll need to know more about the four pillars. These are SEO, Content Marketing, Social Media and Paid Search. Find out more in our complete blog series.
The way B2B audiences prefer to be communicated with and sold to has changed significantly over the last few years. Digital technology has continued to change, which means B2B marketers need to take a more integrated and fluid approach to reaching their target customers.
To keep your marketing strategy as agile as possible, you need to optimise your digital marketing strategy to make sure you’re reaching the right people, on the right channels, at the right time.
B2B marketers need to embrace and sustain ongoing digital change if they want to stay competitive in the future. Let’s have a look at the four core pillars of B2B digital marketing and how they can help you to drive results for your business.
Before we dive into the four pillars, let’s have a closer look at exactly what B2B digital marketing is.
B2B (or business-to-business) marketing is a marketing strategy that is aimed at other businesses or organisations. If you sell products or services to other businesses (not consumers), you will need to use B2B digital marketing strategies.
The longer sales cycle is a key difference between B2B and B2C marketing. B2B buyers are usually looking for solutions that solve the challenges they face within their businesses. An effective B2B strategy should provide relevant, helpful, and engaging content that gives your buyers the information they need at every marketing funnel stage.
This diagram is a great representation of the modern B2B buyer's journey. As you can see, it’s not linear, so it’s important to consider your digital marketing strategy carefully.
A B2B digital marketing strategy can help you to build brand awareness, show customers the value of your product or service, and how it can help them and convert your website visitors into paying customers. Not only this, measuring the results of campaigns is easy, so it can provide you with the best ROI for your business.
Let’s dive into the four core pillars of digital marketing…
Without SEO (search engine optimisation), it’s impossible to drive new visitors to your website.
SEO helps search engines like Google find your website and make sure it shows when your customers search online for your products or service. To be found, you’re going to want to be on the first page of the search results for the keywords related to your business.
With a longer buying cycle for B2B buyers, it means you can struggle to see the return on investment when it comes to an organic search strategy. But, when your customers are researching online, it’s important to be found at all stages of their journey.
If you don’t have an SEO strategy to make sure your site ranks, your potential customers will likely find your competitors before they find you.
Find out more about building an effective B2B SEO strategy in our blog: Pillar one of digital marketing: Getting your B2B SEO strategy on track
Just like SEO, content marketing for B2B is essential for your digital marketing strategy. Which is why it’s our second pillar of a digital marketing strategy.
B2B customers want to make educated and informed decisions about the products and services they buy, so the content you provide needs to give them the information they need. Traditional PR or advertising interrupts customers’ days with sales messages, but a content marketing strategy allows you to provide value and inform your customers of how your product or service can solve their pain points.
In fact, 80% of business decision-makers prefer to get information from an article or an ad. So, providing the right educational content at the right time will help you to guide them through the sales funnel.
In addition, content marketing can support your SEO strategy too. This involves researching the keywords your potential customers are searching for and optimising your website accordingly to drive traffic to your website.
The benefits of content marketing include:
All of which are essential for the bottom line of your business.
Find out more about creating an effective content marketing strategy in our blog: Pillar two of digital marketing: Is a B2B content marketing strategy essential?
Did you know? 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-suite executives use social media when making a purchase.
Building and maintaining a social media strategy can be time-consuming because you need to continuously generate new content to keep your visitors engaged. But social media is the second most popular channel among B2B marketers, so it’s important to build a presence.
While social media isn’t going to automatically generate leads for your business, it’s a great way to build brand awareness, help to get your brand personality across and humanise your business.
B2B social media marketing involves using social media platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn to connect with your audience and eventually drive them to your website.
Want to know more about social media and your B2B digital marketing strategy? Take a look at our blog: Pillar three of digital marketing: Using a B2B social media strategy to drive results for your business
Paid Search, also known as PPC or pay-per-click, is the perfect way to get your content and website in front of your target audience through search engines and other advertising platforms.
It allows you to reach the people actively searching for your products or services and are in-market for what you offer. You can directly target the people who are likely to be interested in your products or services and who are most likely to buy from you at some point in the future. Once you’ve driven traffic to your website, you can keep these visitors engaged through your other digital marketing channels, such as email marketing, until they’re ready to buy from you or speak to a sales representative.
Research shows that Google Ads can offer B2B brands huge ROI and drive results if they’re set up and optimised properly.
PPC campaigns provide a great way to get your brand to the top of the SERPs while you work on your SEO strategy and start driving traffic organically. In fact, SEO and paid search can work well together. SEO is a long-term strategy that can take up to 6-12 months to provide results for your business. On the other hand, paid search can provide results as soon as you set your campaigns live.
Want to know more about how paid search can help your B2B digital marketing strategy? Take a look at our blog: Pillar four of digital marketing: Building an effective B2B paid search strategy for your business
As you can see, an effective digital marketing strategy requires a number of different elements. Your SEO, content marketing, social media, and paid search strategies should work together to drive results for your business.
If you want to reach the modern B2B buyer today, you need to make sure your brand is visible online and that you’re targeting the right customers in the right places. B2B buyers are just like any other consumer and prefer to research online to find the products and services that can help them. Without a digital marketing strategy for your business, they’re likely to find your competitors instead!
If you want to know more about the changing B2B buyer, take a look at our ebook…