If you are running a B2B company, every person in your team should be primed to work hard and persevere in selling your products and services to the companies you serve. Unlike businesses that sell directly to consumers, it takes more effort to take care of conglomerates and corporations.
To start with, it is not easy to run any kind of business. It takes more than monetary investment but also expends time and energy. With your expertise, these companies can easily conduct their operations while minimizing factors that impede their growth.
However, boosting your profitability as a business-to-business consultant is no mean feat. Some clients attempt to do things on their own to save on the cost. Your priority is to show your clients the value of your products and services by proving that you are an indispensable component to their expansion plans. Here are some tips and tricks so you can attract more clients whose business you can enhance and develop.
Demonstrate Your Expertise
In order to secure more clients, you need to demonstrate your expertise. They should know what you can do to help them grow. So, you can inspire confidence towards your brand, your prospects ought to know the companies you currently serve and have served in the past successfully.
Apart from the usual client calls and emails, you can conduct speaking engagements that show off your special skills, this can also mean taking part in podcasts. This is one way to position yourself in the industry. You can also produce quality content, which you can disseminate through email, social media, your website or even create your own online course. Focus on engaging videos because studies show that 64% of users are more likely to buy a product after watching a video.
Showing materials that resonate with your clients will increase your website traffic. Work hard to ascertain these are fresh, informative, and entertaining. These steps will draw them to your site, which contains a wealth of information on your product offerings, client lists, pricing, reviews, and more. Highlight your successful projects to show off your capabilities. Through amazing content, your prospects can truly understand your brand and value.
Have a Good Online Presence
In this digital, modern world, working hard to grow your online presence is no longer a want but a need. Today, 5 billion people own a mobile device, and within it are at least two social media apps that they check throughout the day. Since everyone hangs out online, you should leverage this figure and go where your clients are.
63% of modern shopping begins online. People will go through social media reviews and pages to find out more about a product or company before engaging them. This also helps them to create a picture of the general outlook of the company, setting them in a position to decide whether to make a purchase or not.
To succeed in marketing your business, it is all about sending the right message at the right time to the right target audience. You need an official website and social media profiles as these will amplify your credibility and authority. Also keep in mind that email marketing is just as important for marketing your business as it is for maintaining it.
A lot of thought must be put when creating the company’s website. This is because it can either build or break the company. Research has it that when making bigger purchases, such as the in the case of a B2B company, 89% of prospects will always go through the website before deciding. Even though the traffic doesn’t guarantee conversions, you ought to ensure that you’re always prepared to turn such prospects into customers.
As new visitors continue to visit your site, they can view robust educational content and targeted offers that can bring them closer to you, eventually bringing qualified leads to you. One of the key things to take into consideration is the site’s design. Web design is often an underappreciated factor, which has the power to influence your audience’s brand perception. This means firms can take advantage of it to set themselves apart and convey the credibility they need to succeed.
Do not forget to prime your website for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). It should be easy to navigate for customer satisfaction. You need also exert effort to engage with your clients on social media. Make it a habit to post daily with quality articles, pictures, and most of all, videos that are relevant to your niche.
There are many B2B companies that have excelled through social media, all taking different routes in realizing their goals. Some of the best examples are:
IBM is one of the largest and oldest technology companies in the world, founded over 100 years ago. It has a rich history of innovation which has greatly contributed to its success story. Their social media accounts do a great job at explaining this history through various methods, such as storytelling.
Many B2B companies have had to embrace brand storytelling through the use of longform content such as blog posts and videos. However, IBM’s feed remains to be a constant reminder that you can tell a full story in a single tweet.
Many brands perform okay in their social content, however, the one thing that lacks from a typical B2B social media platform is variety. Most of these companies never bother straying from one content type, color scheme, style, etc. Luckily, they can all learn a thing or two from Mailchimp.
Mailchimp is a popular marketing automation provider, and its social media pages act as a benchmark for many others out there. A quick look at the company’s Instagram feed and you’ll see what we mean by variety. While many B2B brands consider Instagram as an afterthought, Mailchimp’s is updated consistently with fresh content.
More importantly, one can see that their feed is exceptionally diverse. It features just about every type of content you could imagine, from slideshows, fun animations, short videos, etc. These strategies can be seen to work, with the company’s impressive engagement on social media and a huge follower base.
Remember, every like, comment, and share will do wonders in promoting your products and services. The more followers you have, the more people will see your messages, thereby expanding your brand's reach to a wider audience.
When it comes to any kind of business, reputation is everything. This matters even more when you are a B2B because you are selling to tough business owners who analyze their ROI (return on investments) before handing over their money. Prioritize building credibility so your prospects will believe in your brand. If your prospects trust you, they will recommend you to others. Most of all, they will remain loyal to you and become repeat customers.
Make sure you can demonstrate your competence by showing relevant facts and figures that illustrate your stellar results. Be concrete and thorough when you make presentations to prove that you have what it takes to help their business grow.
It would help if you also scaled your advice to suit the needs of your prospects. It is vital to conduct maturity assessments to evaluate the requirements of your client's business. In doing so, you can craft customized recommendations and specific plans of action.
To add to that, auditing customer data is one of the ways of maintaining company credibility. According to Marketscan, one of the leading B2B data management companies in the UK, dirty data accounts to 15% of the loses companies make in their annual revenues.
Dirty data can be used to explain many things, but in most cases, the term is used to refer to:
- Incomplete records
- Duplicate records
- Out-of-date information
- Typographical errors.
To continue delivering experiences and services that others will cherish, as a B2B consultant, you need to get the accurate data of your customers. Inaccurate data leads to slow response rates, and sometimes even zero responses.
According to Romax, some things that might appear simple, might have detrimental impacts on your business, if you do not keep a good track of your customer data.
For instance, your relationship with a client can be negatively impacted if you still have the old office address and not the current one. Another example is dealing with a former employee of the company who still uses your services or products, not knowing that they no longer work there. This could also damage your relationship with the key client.
Apart from ruining your reputation and credibility, you also end up wasting lots of unnecessary resources when you do not audit customer data. An example is spending much of your resources trying to contact a client who closed business, making you waste your valuable marketing budget and time.
To avoid such mistakes, and to maintain the credibility of your brand, ensure that customers’ details are correct & up to date.
Use Customers' "Pain" and Gain to Your Advantage
Because you are working in sales, you truly understand the point of pain and gain. You are adept on how these influences your clients when it comes to making their decisions.
Studies indicate that 75% of people will be more inclined to act when their motivation is pain. This is understandable because pain is uncomfortable, and no one wants to be stuck in this predicament. When it comes to selling to businesses, you should target CFOs who naturally want to avoid all sorts of pain in daily operations. They want to mitigate costs and minimize productivity issues.
In contrast, CEOs are all about results and goals. They are visionaries that think positively and seek gain or pleasure. It is your job to categorize your clients so you can tailor your presentations to what best suits their disposition.
If you are speaking with someone resistant to pain, focus on cutting costs, minimizing redundancies, and making processes easier. If you are meeting a gain advocate, then you should focus on how your services can help their company grow. When you can use this knowledge to your advantage, you will have more successful meeting outcomes and project proposals.
While FedEx is currently available to individual customers, it has been approved and rated as one of the best B2B companies in the world. The company is placed as the 2nd most trusted B2B company by SageFrog and appears in Sacunas’ Top 100 B2B brands list. This company hasn’t made to these lists by mistake, this is because it is mostly committed towards customer service, experience, and open communication. Unlike most of its competitors, FedEx has taken into consideration its customers’ pain points and presented itself as a customer-centric company.
Be Your Client's Personal Trainer
You are meeting people who are running their own businesses, and the key to successful consultative selling to this discerning crowd is to show them how you can help them reach their goals. Sometimes, you must push them hard like a real trainer in order to build them up. After all, for there to be any kind of growth, there must be some growing pains.
You can focus your meetings on problems that they face when running their businesses. Doing this will allow you to understand their operations and issues fully. It is only when you are fully engaged that you can craft feasible solutions to their problems.
It can be quite tricky to execute and accomplish this part because it requires building trust. Thus, it would help if you made it a point to connect with your prospects regularly may it be through a phone call, webinar, online course, or an email series.
As a B2B consultant, you need to be ready to provide all the information that your customers might require, helping them understand your products and how they can be a solution for them. If a user is not presented with such data, they will seek it elsewhere.
There are two proven ways that the online value ladder works. They include proving your value to customers freely through educational content and eventually closing the deal once they trust you. Resmed is one of the companies to have targeted their customers through initiatives such as educating them.
B2B companies have done this for years over the phone or a drink. You too should follow the same format to drive up traffic and sales in the digital field.
It is crucial to meet in person so you can ask your prospective clients all the right questions. This meeting is vital because the answers and data you gather can help you draft your initial proposal. When you are fully aware of your clients' needs and wants to expand their business, you can craft a concrete strategy to help them get the results they desire.
If you work with facts coming from your clients, the chances of your proposal's approval become higher. Before the meeting, draft a list of questions, so you do not waste your client's precious time. Planning ahead shows you are a prepared professional who means business.
Don't forget to dress to impress because first impressions do matter. Groom yourself and make sure you look polished. You are interacting with company owners, so you have to exude authority so they’ll feel confidence in your capabilities! Most of all, communicate with them effectively using professional language that inspires a connection.
Running a business takes a lot of money. At times, resources are quite scarce, whether it is money, time, energy, or manpower. When you are trying to acquire a new client, it is an expensive process that really stretches your budget. However, if you are able to systemize your client acquisition, you can plan better strategies and waste less resources.
Investing in automation systems like project management software for marketing, will help you track the movement of your business. This system will keep you organized, making things easier to access. When everything is seamless, you will feel more in control of your business.
With this systemized tool at your disposal, you can access client metrics and measure engagement rates. Having this data on hand is excellent for monitoring. With the right information, you can make informed business decisions. You can focus on strategies that are working and tweak those that are not.
As a B2B consultant, you are selling more than just a product. You are selling solutions that can help business owners achieve their objectives. If you want to be successful in securing their business, you need to conduct extensive research. You should also promote yourself well by demonstrating your expertise and concrete results.
Don't forget to qualify each prospect to see if they fit with your company. Doing so allows you to optimize your limited resources. When you do your due diligence, it would be so much easier to convert your leads and prospects to actual clients.