B2B marketing is all about focus and careful targeting and although the advent of the Internet and the rise of social media has had a profound impact on the marketing landscape, this one fact remains true: focus and careful targeting is what makes a B2B campaign successful.
However, given the complexity of the online environment and the abundance of social networks, directories, forums, communities, communication channels, each with its own rules of engagement, one could be forgiven if focus is lost. We are more connected than ever, but relationships are also becoming more diluted, more difficult to build.
So what are the choices?
1. To ignore the online environment, not get involved in any social networking or discussions, just have a token website and continue business as usual, as if all the online action did not exist. However, this will result in the business eventually disappearing, as the competitors will definitely take advantage of the new communication channels.
2. Jump in, and try and do everything. Start with creating a great website, add all the resources, from testimonials and case studies to white papers, webinars, podcasts, videos. Then join all the social networks, all forums and communities. Create profiles, join groups, start conversing. All these are good, and it may work if the business is Microsoft, or General Motors (although lately even General Motors is rethinking presence on all platforms). But for most businesses, the reality is that time and money are limited resources, which have to be spent on the channels that would bring the best ROI.
3. Focus: pick the networks and platforms that work for a specific business. Taking the time to research thoroughly and identify the exact spots the target audience is likely to be will pay off. But this is not everything: what are they doing there? How do they interact? What would they like to see? Even when? Once you know the answers to all these questions, the way forward will be clear and the B2B campaign has all the chances to succeed.
To conclude, we think that sometimes less is more, but not less as in less effort. It is not about working or interacting less, but it’s about doing it in a smarter way, even if it may seem like everybody else is doing everything. What do you think?