With your Christmas tree long shrivelled and orange, it’s time to stop being in denial. It’s well and truly 2011. And as the seasons change, so do the needs and desires of those good people who keep us from calling a cardboard box home – your buyers.
Digital technology has changed the face of the playing field. No matter the size of your brand, to stay current you need to establish a solid online marketing plan.
But how to cook up something original? Stir in the followingthree ingredients to keep your B2B brand fresh, your offer tempting, and your buyers coming back for more.
1. Bow down to content
In 2011, content is king. Why? Because your buyers say so.
Buyers are hungry for relevant information they can use to choose and justify their purchases. To create and maintain a loyal brand following, you need to offer a smorgasbord of quality, up-to-date content.
Content doesn’t have to be product, service, or even brand specific. By providing industry specific content, you can position yourself as a knowledgeable industry leader. Step back and take a look at the content you’re currently providing and where there are gaps you can fill.
We realise creating desirable content can be time-consuming, so take a shortcut and jump the fence. Repurpose what you already have across a variety of fresh media. Whitepapers can translate into blog posts, webinars, videos, conference presentations and even articles on industry sites.
2. Blaze ahead with the web
Despite the buzz around social media, and what it can do for business, many B2B brands in particular are lagging behind. You know who you are and you need to create a reputation online pronto! The sooner you become established on the web, the sooner your audience can start growing.
Although social media is undeniably important for B2B in today’s world, it should be just one glob of paint on your marketing palette. There are many other fresh marketing channels online – and they’re multiplying. Be the first in your category to own a new marketing channel. Think beyond the current digital channels and how they’re being used. By using an innovative marketing platform you can establish your brand as a leader and forerunner.
The opportunities are endless and ripe for the picking: search engine optimisation, online directories and searchable catalogues, text DM, e-newsletters, online events, virtual tradeshows, web video, live chat, Q & A sessions, the list goes on.
3. Plan for profits
ROI is still key — but that doesn’t mean playing it safe.
Determine what you want to achieve, and formulate a plan of attack. Don’t start dabbling in online channels without clear objectives and a strategic plan in place first. You’ll get where you’re going faster if you know where you’re heading.
Experiment, be creative, and most of all, know what you want to achieve with each initiative.