B2B marketers utilize a ton of methods to get in front of prospects and buyers: email marketing, social media ads, search engine ads, blogging, retargeting, SEO – the list goes on.
And while it seems that digital marketing is now a mainstay for B2B firms, the question still comes up: Why is digital marketing important for B2B firms? In this post, we take a look at why it’s important for B2B marketers to allocate time and resources to digital marketing.
Your Prospects Are Doing Research Online
The recent pandemic brought digital marketing to the forefront as a lead generation tool – especially for industries that drag their feet when it comes to modernizing (Source). Many industries were already relying on digital marketing for lead generation and lead nurturing, but the value became even more clear. Why?
The fact is that prospects in B2B industries are doing research online for products and services. Did you know that B2B buyers often engage with 3-5 pieces of digital content before they make contact with a sales rep? (Source) If you don’t have a strong digital presence, your prospects are getting that content from your competitors.
Your Current Leads Are Looking Around Online
Wait, isn’t this the same as prospects? No. Digital marketing and a polished B2B website presence are crucial not only in lead generation but also in lead nurturing. When it comes to the B2B buying process, it can take anywhere from two months to two years to make a decision, secure the right budget, or to get a contract signed. While your sales team may be working with the lead throughout that time, digital marketing is crucial in helping to nurture the lead as well. Think about nurturing your leads with blog posts, white papers, case studies, use cases, videos, email updates, and other forms of digital content.
A Polished Web Presence Is Expected
A polished, professional B2B website is not preferred, it’s absolutely expected. If a prospect arrives on your website and it looks so “2000 and late,” they’ll assume your company is either out of business or isn’t keeping up with the latest trends. Then they go to your competitor’s website and see an up-to-date, engaging website. You know how this ends.
A polished web presence is not only expected but essential to building credibility with your prospects and leads. Even if your firm comes highly recommended by another source, your website may be the first interaction they have with your firm. It must represent your company in a positive light and engage that prospect right away.
It’s an Opportunity to Create an Educational Hub
Successful sales teams guide the conversation and take control of the narrative. This means they are the ones who are educating the prospect about the products or services they need. Having a digital platform that hosts educational material (not just sales material) is an essential way to earn the trust of your prospects and to position your firm as a thought leader, resource, or trusted educator.
Every buying relationship is based on trust. A digital marketing strategy that includes the generation of helpful, educational content sets the stage for credibility and builds trust in your firm, your offerings, and your people.
Your Competitors Are Doing It
We said it. Look around. Do your competitors have a totally kick-ass website that you love? You can bet prospects love it too. It’s important to see what your competition is doing – especially if you end up going toe to toe with them over projects. If for some reason your competitor has a crappy website – take the clear advantage and build a B2B website design that rocks and will blow prospects out of the water.
Seriously. B2B Digital Marketing Is Essential
We’ve made the case, but it’s not all fluff. We have seen digital marketing work. B2B companies that were struggling to generate good, quality leads ramped up digital marketing and saw the difference in just a few months.