We’re in the midst of upheaval. For small business owners, the digital revolution has been an incredibly complicated and difficult time to run a business. Also in B2B, the landscape has changed so much as to be wholly unrecognizable from just a few years ago. In the olden days (pre-2000), sales needed an element of direct human-to-human interaction, even if it was over the phone or email. But now the norm seems to be indirect interaction, consumers and businesses alike do their research, fact-finding, and purchasing completely without communicating directly with another person.
Obviously, this new sales terrain is still being explored and mapped. But even now, it’s possible for the savvy B2B marketing strategist to guess the lay of the land and develop a few important tips or rules that should be followed when navigating this strange new world. Come, brave adventurer, and see what the future holds! With these five keys, you will unlock access to a kingdom of new opportunities. Follow us into the future.
Nowadays, this should be a no brainer. If your business has no website, it’s impossible for you to control your story. With your own website, you have a chance to control the narrative and emphasize the best information about your company. Having a website is no longer a choice, without one, you risk looking like a brand new or worse, legally questionable operation.
Get a backstory
Likewise, a backstory is an important part of a brand identity, and a website gives business owners a chance to create their own compelling brand story. Find different ways you can tell and show your own story on your website, and consumers will naturally appreciate that information. With the story, people can begin to form a human impression of your business, and will start to emphasize with you.
The reality is that simply having a website will do you no good if there isn’t anyone visiting it. It’s like the old “tree falls in a forest” conundrum: if your website posts a great article and no one’s there to read it, does it really help your SEO? (the answer is no, not one tiny little bit). But SEO is more than just regularly publishing content and scattering random keywords around—no, now SEO requires social interaction as well. Social has become so vital, so interwoven within the fabric of the web at large, that it helps to determined what we get on our Google results.
Social media can be an uncomplicated way to get that SEO juice. Follow customers, competitors, and industry influencers alike, see what types of content motivates them, and match your published content to that format. Remember what types of content are relevant to your customers, and publish that content most likely to get shared.
Spend some cash
Yes—everyone is still smarting from the collapse of organic reach. We know. We feel your pain. But Facebook’s got us where it wants us, and sometimes, paying for a little boost (which can be remarkably affordable, given the right targeting), is just the best way to get that extra reach. For just a few dollars a day, social media ads can give your B2B business the boost it needs to reach those extra clients.
Content is extremely valuable. It’s still a lot of effort to produce, so it makes sense to attempt to get as much mileage out of every piece. Articles can be easily repurposed into infographics and vice versa, and old articles can be organized and condensed into top ten lists. It’s a lot easier than creating brand-new content! ______________________________________________________________________________
Nick Rojas is a business consultant and writer who lives in Los Angeles and Chicago. He has consulted small and medium-sized enterprises for over twenty years. You can follow him on Twitter @NickARojas.