And just like that, another year has come and gone again. As we prepare for the holiday season and ramp up for 2020, we’d like to reflect on some key highlights from 2019 and things your B2B brand should be preparing for in 2020.
Do More With Your Data
While soft metrics like clicks and site traffic are good to know, your focus as you go into 2020 has to be on conversion rate optimization that ties into your overall business objectives. We like to have our clients share their top 3-5 priorities for the new year—what tactics and strategies are you implementing to ultimately turn that lead into a sale? Once you have this figured out, it’s a matter of putting pen to paper and, from a campaign and media standpoint, start getting your message in front of your target audience.
Remember, if a prospect has never heard of your B2B brand before, it’s going to take at least 7-12 different touchpoints until you get them further down the sales funnel on their way to potentially purchasing your product. Without going too far down a rabbit hole, you need to have a sound content strategy and analyze the user journey once you get them on your website. From there, you need to understand how they are digesting the content you’re putting in front of them. Once they get to a product landing page, they may not be ready to buy. They could potentially bounce right off your site or explore further to better understand your brand and what you bring to the table for their business. Analyzing how they are interacting and traversing your content will help better inform your B2B company what the proper next step is to get them closer to purchase.
There are different tools and platforms that can help you do the above. That’s another lengthy topic on its own, but it’s good for you to know—and something to consider going into the new year. The more you can optimize to keep your potential B2B buyer intrigued, the more sales you’re going to find in this new year.
Content Is Still King
Content has been king and will continue to be in 2020. Not only does your website need updated blogs, articles, white papers, case studies, press releases, but you also have to create content to drive your customers and prospects to your site. Don’t produce content for the sake of producing content. Produce your content to create a desire and need for your product. How can you convince your prospects that they can’t go another day without your brand? It may be cliché, but it’s how you should approach each piece of content you produce next year.
This year in particular was a healthy arm wrestle with our prospects in understanding the value of social media in the B2B space. LinkedIn’s targeting capabilities have become more sophisticated this year, and it’s a solid place and touchpoint for you to be in front of your prospects and customers. With that being said, however, it is absolutely important to divvy up your social media spend across Facebook and Instagram, too. Yes, we know Gen Z [link to article] doesn’t really associate with Facebook, but your core buyer right now does. It’s incredibly cost effective to gain massive reach and target your best customer on Facebook, regardless of Gen Z’s slower adoption of the medium. But regardless of how you feel about social media, remember that behind the business you’re trying to close is a human. Where is that human spending a lot of his/her time? On their individual social feeds.
On top of social, consider other digital tactics to be in front of your prospect at the right place and right time. Whether digital display, mobile geo-fencing, Google Smart Display, Gmail ads, or other mediums, these are all great ways to consistently entice your B2B buyer to stay connected with your product or services.
Pay To Play
80% of the B2B prospects we talked to this year were founded by some sort of engineer; therefore, the founders or c-suite believe that if you build a better mousetrap, buyers will find their way to your brand. We hate to say it, but that just isn’t the case these days. When you post on social, you need to boost via marketing dollars to your current audience. If you don’t, less than 3% of your total audience will see your message. While you’re at it, create an ad attracting to potential new customers who don’t follow your company.
You may take our advice from the above section and produce tons of valuable content in 2020 that lives on your website. However, if you don’t properly drive users to that valuable content, why ever create that great content in the first place? We understand that not every brand has millions of dollars to market their company and that is completely fine. Just make sure you’re investing in some way to get your B2B buyer further down that sales funnel and onto your current customer list.
Our agency wishes you a wonderful holiday break with your family and friends. Get excited for the new year and come back refreshed and ready for 2020 so you can continue to convince your prospects and customers why they need you going forward in 2020.