B2B marketing has only recently risen to a whole new level with advancements in online targeting, display advertising, and marketing automation. But despite the recent advancements and opportunities within business-to-business marketing, it can still be difficult to understand what drives success. From MarketingProfs, here are seven misconceptions about what makes for successful B2B marketing and how to avoid them.
"Branding isn't as important in B2B as it is in B2C"
Branding is arguably more important in B2B than in B2C marketing because the B2B purchase process is long, complex, and often involves multiple decision-makers.
"Last-click measurement provides an accurate picture of where your marketing dollars are working"
In fact, an average buyer interacts with a brand 4.3 times in the final 48 hours before making a purchase. Different strategies shine along different parts of the marketing funnel, and marketers must measure success by the appropriate metrics.
"Getting in front of the right company makes for successful B2B marketing"
Finding the right company important, but getting in front of the right people at that company is even more important. Don't waste marketing dollars on people within your target account that have no interest or influence on the purchasing decision.
"All B2B targeting is all created equally"
Data quality in online advertising is often suspect. The best data will be from vendors that use a mix of multiple sources to ensure freshness, constant cross-checking, and data validation.
"Display advertising doesn't drive leads"
A study found that prospects who viewed search marketing ads for a company were 82% more likely to buy the product in question than if they received no exposure. When the search ads were paired with display ads, the researchers saw a 119% lift in sales. Display can be deployed as a lead generator as well as a vehicle for influencing and educating prospects at any stage of the marketing funnel.
"Business marketers need to stick to delivering a message to businesspeople within a business environment"
More than 80% of people check their work emails after they've left the office and 64% of businesspeople spend time on sites unrelated to their work while they're in the office. Marketers need to be able to deliver the right message, syncing it with wherever their prospects are online and wherever they happen to be in the purchase cycle.
"Businesspeople always want personalized marketing"
Personalization comes across as helpful and thoughtful when a relationship between the prospect and the brand already exists. But connecting on a personalized level with prospects too high in the marketing funnel and before they have given permission, such as by providing an email, violates trust and invades privacy. Communications that are too personalized before an relationship has been created can be harmful to a brand.