Back in 2016, I wrote about the Top 5 B2B Marketing Tactics You Can’t Ignore. Some things haven’t changed – there are still endless marketing platforms, software, and tools that promise to generate leads and conversions and offer the greatest ROI.
But, so many world-changing events have occurred since, transforming every industry in numerous ways, leading to some notable strategic changes across the B2B marketing sphere.
Research showed that the top five most relied-upon B2B marketing tactics focused heavily on digital aspects like website design and functionality, organic growth, paid search, and social engagement. These tactics were:
- Mobile-friendly web and UX development
- Branding, rebranding, and launching a new brand
- SEO with a focus on content marketing
- SEM with a focus on Google Ads
- Social media engagement through LinkedIn Sponsored Content
The most recent B2B Marketing Mix Report (MMR) shows that while some elements of these tactics have remained the same, marketers now place a greater overall emphasis on the brand strategy side of things like personalization and employer branding. The order of importance these tactics belong in will vary depending on your goals, but each will undoubtedly impact every successful B2B marketing campaign.
Here are five B2B marketing tactics you can’t ignore in 2023.
Leverage Branding & Social for Awareness
In previous years, marketers prioritized generating sales- and marketing-qualified leads. But with so many businesses flocking to search engines, fighting to be seen and heard, it’s easy to understand why more professionals are dedicating time and energy to building awareness for their brand, products, services, and teams.
This trend aligns well with MMR findings for the most implemented marketing tactics and top areas of spend. If you’re not taking your website and social media profiles seriously, it’s time to start.
Marketers also see higher engagement on Twitter, which can be instrumental in brand awareness and reputation management. The platform’s post style helps businesses build approachable brand personalities and tones.
Twitter is truly a multifunctional outlet that serves a valuable function for those in the B2B industry. Try tweeting to spark conversation among relevant audiences, support existing customers, share company and industry updates, and offer your latest thought leadership morsels.
Increase Personalization for Your Audience
Last year we saw some of the biggest pushes for personalization in marketing we’ve ever seen. Personalization in B2B has the power to build genuine brand loyalty when marketers focus on the things prospects value most throughout the buyer’s journey and marketing funnel.
2021’s push for greater personalization in email, inbound, and account-based marketing continues encouraging marketers to adopt related best practices and empathetic approaches. 41% of survey respondents say personalization will be one of their new marketing and sales strategies in 2023, tying with social media marketing.
That means there are still teams out there that haven’t put much effort into experimenting with modern personalization capabilities and techniques. The more you play around with personalization tactics, the quicker you’ll be able to identify what works for your brand and audiences and what doesn’t.
Prioritize Paid & Organic Social Media Marketing
In 2016, SEO and SEM each had a place in the top five, but now we’re looking at them together in a new light. Businesses are rushing to improve their online presence, pushing these two digital tactics onto center stage.
In this year’s MMR, social media jumped from the second most implemented tactic to the first for respondents. 83% of those surveyed say social media and social media advertising are among their most implemented marketing tactics, and 34% label it a top area of marketing spend.
More marketers are discovering the value of both organic and paid social media marketing, choosing to invest in both to improve their online performance. These tactics enable marketers to create highly refined groups of ideal prospects and position themselves in front of them in the right places at the right times with retargeting ads and lookalike audiences. Platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn make it easy for brands to identify, engage, and connect with qualified leads.
Experiment With Video Marketing
Video marketing has truly exploded with the rise of TikTok and the stories, reels, and alike functionalities across other platforms. YouTube is still king in terms of audience size and ad consumption for video content, but every platform has something to teach marketers about what audiences want most.
Aside from being highly engaging, video marketing is flexible and accessible for marketers working with just about any budget. With a camera built into every modern device, video content can be fast and straightforward to create and do wonders for highlighting your brand personality and tone. Videos can be casual or professional, cover any topic, and be presented in various formats, like product and service promos, case studies, interviews, testimonials, tutorials, and demonstrations.
For those with the budget to hire a professional, there are some extraordinarily talented video production companies out there to help create well-written, visually and conceptually stunning pieces.
Leverage LinkedIn for Targeted Lead Engagement
After six years, LinkedIn still sits on the throne as the most relied upon social media platform for locating and engaging with leads. You can reach highly targeted audiences through a few different ad formats to provide demos and consultations, share thought leadership, and showcase your work. Contact and company lists can help achieve niche targeting that is difficult to obtain via other channels. With an intelligent account-based marketing strategy, marketers can use both inbound and outbound marketing techniques to cast a tighter marketing and sales net, directly engaging with key accounts and business stakeholders to get results fast.
Putting It All Together
Numerous platforms and tools exist to help businesses plan, strategize, and execute each of these B2B marketing tactics, but without a deep level of tactical experience and familiarity with a whole world of valuable data, it can be a tremendous challenge. I’ve often said, “strategy without tactics is a daydream” and “tactics without strategy is a nightmare.” Influenced by Sun Tzu, this concept is the backbone of Sagefrog’s step-wise marketing process. If you need help implementing these strategies and more for your brand, let’s talk.