Brand awareness is one of the most important aspects of running your business and B2B brand awareness can be a real challenge, especially when you consider that most of the existing literature about branding focuses on B2C marketing. Here’s what you need to know to take your industrial business’s brand to the next level.
How B2B Brand Awareness Is Different from B2C
B2B marketing fundamentally differs from B2C marketing in several ways. B2C marketing, which addresses consumers, typically involves one decision maker. As a result, sales cycles are usually much faster and the relationships between buyers and a brand can change quickly.
On the other hand, when you are dealing with multiple people and departments, such as in B2B marketing, you need to convey the value of your brand to multiple stakeholders, all of whom have slightly different perspectives. Moreover, these decision makers come into contact with multiple departments and people at your company. This means you have to ensure that your business’ representatives are properly trained so that they do not give other companies the wrong idea about your brand.
Additionally, the B2B sales process will likely take longer than in B2C. This means the conversation between a brand and a customer can be a long and nuanced one, making consistency across B2B brand awareness activities and communications all the more important.
Make Your Website Stand Out
Designing a quality website is a fundamental cornerstone of any B2B brand awareness effort. Make sure that your site is easy to navigate. It should also present your main, unique selling proposition right at the top, front and center. This ensures that people will instantly know the exact products or services your business offers.
Mobile optimization is also key. Today, people are accessing sites from their phones more than ever. This is one part of your business’s branding that you can’t afford to ignore. Finally, make sure there is either a clear contact form or email listed on your website so that you don’t leave interested prospects without any way to get in touch with your business.
Invest in Collateral & Signage
Another crucial part of building B2B brand awareness is the usage of well-designed business cards, brochures, and signage. If you do not have advertising materials that impress your potential business partners, they might choose to work with someone else.
Business cards are absolutely necessary for B2B marketing as you always want to come across as professional and prepared. Brochures are beneficial for both providing additional information about your company as well as displaying your brand’s image.
Signage with a creative logo and a clear message are also important as they gain other businesses’ interest. Eye-catching signs may be the first impression other companies have of your brand and they are the first step toward a working relationship.
Attend Industry Conferences
With industrial products, in-person communication is just as important as ever. Buyers want to know that they can trust your company. After all, in a day and age when any startup can make baseless claims, being able to represent your brand in person at an industry event and provide detailed information about your company’s services will really set you apart.
Furthermore, people buy from those they know, like, and trust. The greater rapport you can build through your B2B brand awareness efforts, the better. If you see the same company at events often, you will likely learn more about their business and form a relationship. This may lead to a long-lasting collaboration that can benefit both companies.
Be Active on Social Media
Industrial companies who are not active on social media are missing out on a huge opportunity to increase B2B brand awareness via a channel that is accessible to anyone with a smartphone, tablet, or computer.
Set a goal to post something valuable every day that pertains to other companies in the industry. Eventually, prospects will start to follow your content and engage with you on a more frequent basis, leading to sales.
Don’t Ignore Email Marketing Campaigns
Although there are newer digital marketing methods, email remains a very useful tool for reaching out to other businesses. Businesses may regularly change which social media platforms or apps they use but email persists and shows no signs of slowing down.
Consider Radio & Podcasts
Some people receive information better in a visual form. For these people, websites, business cards, and other printed collateral work well.
However, don’t miss out on audio sources such as broadcast radio, digital radio, and podcasts for raising B2B brand awareness. You can catch business professionals on their way to work or throughout their day through the audio content they consume while commuting, multitasking, or working out.
Leverage Industrial Magazines
One of the best things you can do for your B2B brand awareness campaign is to advertise in magazines focused on the industrial sector. This is where your prospects look for news about new products, competitors, or industry trends. Plus, they are more likely to respond to your branding in a magazine where their mind is already focused on work.
Pick up the Phone
Although not all consumers respond well to cold calling, it is especially important in the B2B world. People today want to know that they are dealing with real people. Sometimes speaking to someone over the phone may foster a relationship between businesses better than reaching out online.
By speaking to other businesses over the phone, you can gauge if your companies will be a good match. Cold-calling also gives your company’s sales team a natural excuse to make follow-up calls that can eventually turn into demos, appointments and, of course, sales.
Send Personal Brand Ambassadors
Making personal connections is the next step toward enhancing your brand’s image. Even though facts and figures can be persuasive, interacting with business prospects will help you make a sale and hopefully establish a long-lasting partnership.
Sending a few brand ambassadors to visit a prospect shows that your company values theirs and that you are willing to put in the time and effort needed to build a professional relationship. Additionally, well-trained brand ambassadors will associate your brand with professionalism, positivity, and a commitment to mutual benefit — all important signals to send in the B2B world.
Why B2B Brand Awareness Matters
People cannot buy from you if they don’t know who you are. That is why your first job in marketing is to make sure other industrial businesses know and recognize your company’s name, logo, and the products and services you offer.
Brand awareness is something that can truly set your business apart. However, it is even more important to make sure that the brand you are promoting is rooted in key aspects that really make your business unique. Make sure to focus on what sets your company apart early on to prevent fundamental mistakes in branding that will diminish the value of this important aspect of B2B marketing for your company