Your company offers all the right products for your market but somehow, your average monthly sales tells you that you’re not addressing the target customers you had in mind when you created your products. Is this one of your main business concerns?
A discrepancy in product sales and capital outlay, especially when your products were based on market research and went through numerous iterations before launch just to ensure that it would delight customers, usually points to weak product communications. If you’re already bugged down about the slow growth of your product or the possibility of breaking even way past your expected timeline, don’t stress about further cash outflows to improve your communications.
Here are six ways you can communicate your products better and get your customers to hit that purchase button!
1) Understand the difference between B2B marketing from B2C marketing
When communicating your products, note the fine line between Business-to-Business or B2B companies and Business-to-Consumers or B2C companies. Their goals of buying or subscribing to your products or services are entirely different from each other. B2Bs need products and services that help manage or tighten their supply chain by either getting things done faster, doing operations easier, expanding their margins through the right purchase of equipment, etc. The bottom line is, B2Bs are interested in efficiency and ROI results. On the other hand, B2Cs like differentiation so they can give their customers “value for money” or deals. These communications are usually bundled using elaborate marketing campaigns. That said, B2B is more straightforward, while B2C communications are more entertaining.
B2B companies are more averse to trial purchases compared to B2Cs as they have their business’ sustainability in mind. Therefore, your communications should never be whimsical and should never try to attract the emotions as a way of introduction. Their purpose for considering your product or service is because they see you as a possible long-term solution to keep their businesses running. That means you need to communicate the functions that would benefit that specific need for a long time, or at least three to five years.
To expound on this further, it means directly giving details of your expertise, and products’ functionalities that will complement their business needs or improve on their current business operations. Compared to using a B2C approach, B2Bs are conscious about the impact of their purchases and business partnerships to the bottom line.
2) Define your market segments or target audience
Of course, depending on the industry your company operates in and the products or services you offer, you have to define your target customer because if you don’t know who you’re communicating to then the chances of you not piquing their interest through your collaterals are up by nearly 100 percent.
If you sell equipment, list down which industries currently use what you sell and those who will benefit from its purchase. Also do your research on who usually makes the purchasing decision for your target companies. This way you can draft a sales pitch for these personalities that would give you a vague idea on what kinds of questions they would be asking and benefits they are looking for to confidently decide on the purchase.
For example, if you sell packaging machines for instance, your main targets would be to sell to manufacturing companies. Many manufacturing companies in the Philippines are large companies therefore, you would likely have to be in contact with a buyer from its purchasing department. These departments would be highly knowledgeable in the specifications of your machines as guided by the line managers in their plant operations department who will be on top of monitoring these machines and their output.
Unless you’ve made the decision not to sell to Small and Medium Enterprises or SMEs, you’ll have to include them in your customer segment matrix. SMEs are smaller and may have members of its management handling several departments at a time. The decision-making process may involve the operations manager who may be interested in the broad specifications like the output of the machine and how it affects their production. Be ready to bundle these services you offer pertaining to maintenance, warranty, and other after sales services.
3) Understand their habits
Based on the segments that describe industries likely to use what your company offers and key decision makers, these can be further defined as customer personas which you can build on to track their entertainment and media habits, so you know exactly where to target them.
Since you’re selling them a product or service that benefits their business, then the most obvious channel they frequent is their email inbox. The time you send your email is crucial as you don’t want to risk your well-thought-of content to get deleted or marked as spam. If you’re able to get a list of emails of startup owners, procurement managers, etc. let your research on your customer persona guide you on how to craft the email. From what subject you’ll be using to pique their interest to your salutation and weaving the details into your brief message, these are important factors to make your email effective. Also, don’t forget the CTA or click to action button.
The CTA usually links to your website or directly to your apply or landing pages that should get them to consider your product or service more. Don’t expect a quick conversion from email marketing, but your foot in the door to a possible partnership. Hubspot credits email marketing to provide a 40% effectivity for most B2B’s content marketing success.
4) Improve your website
Your business most likely already has a website, but if it’s just there to provide your product portfolio and a short write-up about your company and where your customers can find you, it’s time to redefine your website’s purpose; presumably from establishing a web presence that draws customers and suppliers to your offline channels to one that connects them directly to your sales department, customer service, etc.
For those who already have optimised landing pages that give the full information on your brand, products, and services, enhance these by providing CTAs that will not only increase your target’s rate of consideration but easily allow them to take the next step of their customer journey on your website. Therefore, designing your website that is visually appealing is great but what’s more important is the ease of navigation your customers will have in order to get them to stick around and actually convert.
Your website is also the only platform you can begin your SEO activity. Make sure you’ve got a blog page where you can create organic content that will increase your searchability on search engine pages such as Google. Blogs are the best marketing channels for B2B marketing as B2B companies, especially startup owners, look for informational content that allows them to increase their expertise in their fields of business as well. If they have something to look forward to for them to decide on making a purchase or repeat their purchase, then it’s an important page to have up.
Remember, it takes time for businesses to decide on a product or subscribing to a service so keep creating reasons for them to decide on making a deal with your company.
5) Make use of social media
According to the Content Marketing Institute, 83% of B2B marketers use social media to implement their tactics and 54% have said to have generated leads from social media. Its effectivity has been proven so much so that 66% of marketers spend at least 6 hours a week on social media to get more leads.
Even if you’re targeting CEOs of startups or high-ranking officers of large companies, chances are they have a social media account. Facebook Philippines even says that Facebook is practically “synonymous to the internet” here as Facebook’s penetration rate stands at 88% of the population or 95 million Facebook users out of 108 million Filipinos. 65% of monthly regular monthly users are said to return on a daily basis, according to their report presented in the Forward Financing webinar last August, 2020.
Social media is your way to turn up website visits. If your target market is in the Philippines and Southeast Asia, it’s your best bet to introduce your products and/or services and get them to click and consider you. Converting them is a matter of how optimised and customer responsive your website or step four.
Remember that just like your email content, your organic content as well as your ads (should you consider adding a budget for social media marketing, which is recommended to reach more of your target audiences), should be segmented. Use copies that appeal to their needs and objective as discussed in step one. Then, when boosting this, target them to the specific personas, which Facebook allows you to customise.
6) Business financing for better conversion rates
It’s important not to let your strategies and efforts go to waste and get your communications collaterals above the sea of ads that is your competition. To get things moving, you’ll need to spend on some campaigns, especially if you’ve established KPIs that should be bringing in a specific number of traffic to your website for your social media ads’ Click Through Rate (CTR). Maintaining all the channels mentioned above requires analytical tools that will optimise your processes and ensure the attainment of your KPIs.
To keep things running when you’re low on working capital, there are also online solutions for that such as online working capital financing or simply, business loans. First Circle now has three products for SMEs who are in market penetration mode or want to target more customers that might not have heard of them yet or had previously considered them but never got to move to the next phase of their customer journey online.
Business financing in the form of working capital loans are supposed to help businesses operationally through bridging their cash flow gaps so they don’t have to turn down new projects because they haven’t been able to collect on their receivables yet, which happens frequently throughout the course of their business’ cycle. There are times that small businesses simply cannot run because they cannot fund operational costs like overhead.
First Circle’s products provide a means to continue taking on projects or advancing payments so that you can spend your time managing other parts of the business instead of keeping everything on hold while you find the right loaning institution. We provide business loans for Purchase Order Financing, Invoice Financing and Amortizing Loans.
Need business financing today? Apply for one with First Circle by clicking here.