Social distancing is a phrase that has been used all too much in 2020. There are a lot of sweet moments we are all really missing right now because of social distancing. You’ll be happy to hear that when it comes to B2B marketing, you should be abandoning all social distancing.
And by that, of course, we mean relatively speaking. Because B2B marketing hasn’t typically been known for its coziness, but nothing else has been quite typical for a long time, so why not?
You’ve probably noticed that a lot of consumer-focused marketing has increased in its efforts to connect at an emotional level. The world is collectively going through something right now, and people appreciate a nod to the fact that it’s hard, it’s a little scary and it’s not a good time for cutthroat methods.
It’s the same in B2B marketing. Companies are feeling the impact of reduced budgets, longer buy cycles and employees that might feel a bit worried about their jobs. It’s time for more empathy and more connection. Digitally, of course.
Here are three ways you can put it into practice:
Embrace Digital: If you’ve been relying in years past on live events or other in-person marketing, while reluctantly putting up with the presence of social media and email marketing, it’s time to turn that on its head. Invest more heavily in digital connection, finding ways to engage in conversation with your contacts via social media.
Listen In: People are particularly receptive to brands that are positioned to listen right now. It makes sense: things have changed and all of your previous understanding of your target market is probably based on now-outdated data. Join forums where your audience is likely to gather and then do a lot of listening before you contribute.
Right now is definitely not the time for a lot of talk about how great your product is. There are plenty of companies willing to talk about themselves, but few that will extensively listen to customers.
Use Content to Build Community: You’ve listened to your audiences, and now that you know what problems they’re facing and what issues they’re discussing, you can build content that provides value and generates more conversation. Is there a controversial topic shaping up in your industry? You can build your credibility as an expert by weighing in on the conversation.
Maybe you can solve common challenges with a simple explanatory video or a demonstration on your product. Think about the needs your customer has, and think of your B2B marketing plan as simply a person helping another person solve a problem.
When it comes to B2B marketing, there was already plenty of social distancing. Now it’s time to pull in a little closer (digitally!) to listen, connect as one person to another and help your audiences solve their problems. Our team at SJC Marketing for help getting started with your strategy.