How the world has changed. When I started my sales and business career, all I had to contend with was cold calling – by phone or foot, letter box drops or press ads.
Now, with the introduction of the internet, the world has become so much smaller, with the click of a mouse there is now nothing you cannot find, research, buy or communicate to the world.
In the past, the company with the biggest media spend or largest sales force got the sales, which was great for the big multinationals and great for branding. But now it’s about the analytics, direction and personalised strategy with a purpose. So it’s not necessary to outspend but instead you need to out strategise the competition.
People are bombarded with information and messages. So how do you get your message out there? The line between B2B and B2C are becoming more defined. What’s the real difference and why do we need to engage differently?
B2B is when business deals with business, but it’s still about people dealing with people. Basically, you are trying to build a relationship between your company and the company you wish to supply product or services to.
It’s about understanding who is who, what their needs are, analysing customer history and developing a trusted relationship. This information is then stored centrally in a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool, which you can then use to drive a sales strategy. The messaging of this strategy is then delivered through email, literature and/or person-to-person or ongoing social media interactions.
B2C is when business deals with consumers, the outcome may still be to get sales but it’s now about creating a personal customer experience and bringing the customer along the customer journey.
This journey may involve Web, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, emails, SMS, online and offline activities. Statistically you need to have six touch points to have the greatest opportunity of getting a sale from the consumer. The delivery of this experience needs to cross the above environments: this is what we call omnichannel marketing.
The future of marketing sits here and the need to manage all these interactions requires an omnichannel marketing platform. It’s not a simple CRM system that has a one-to-one engagement but one to many, with the added complexity that the customer receives a different message/experience from a variety of media environments.
Below is a brief overview of each of these platforms.
Your website can focus on business (online), educate customers, deliver strong marketing messages, establish credibility, access new customers, improve productivity, turn visitors into prospects, drive the brand and create an online presence.
Below are the main social media offerings for business, which allow you to speak directly with your clients or potential customers. They allow you to build a relationship with your past, present and future customers. Understanding the demographics of each of these social media is important as that will give you an insight into how to engage them. It’s all about the customer experience and being relevant.
Using Facebook is all about communicating with the customer, showing them your products and services, and relationship branding. It has a middle to older audience (majority over 35) who have a relatively higher spend, is pictures and lifestyle driven, offers business to customer interactions. It’s about people networking and can be used to drive traffic to your website.
This is trends-driven with a younger audience and focuses on keywords you post. It has a wider audience than Facebook, allows interaction with the customer, social media campaigns, network ideas and topics, makes your brand relevant, identifies influencers, boost your website SEO so can be used to drive traffic to your website.
‘Insta’ is a strong visual platform, ideal for audiences between 18 and 34. Images attract followers and they must be relevant and of good quality. It’s also used to drive traffic to your website
This medium is used for video and to reach your target audience visually, to educate, tell a story, boost your website’s SEO. It can be used to drive traffic to your website.
Then there are the more traditional ways of communicating and engaging with your customers: email and SMS allows you to send more personal and direct messages. It’s used to drive traffic to your website or customers into the physical store.
Marketing and getting your message out today to your target market is both more challenging and needs more accuracy than ever. If you are not a seasoned and on-trend marketer, to do that is problematic and you may be missing out on growth opportunities.
This outline has been provided to help simplify the options available to businesses today, whether B2B or B2C. If you would like further assistance, please contact ecco to help bring this to life in your business.
Frank Colli, Founder, eccoConsultants