Editor's note: This post was originally published in August 2017 and has been updated to be more current and comprehensive.
Some B2B marketers shy away from digital advertising, because things like paid search and social media ads have historically been consumer-focused. If executed improperly, paid search can be a quick way to lose money. But if you do it right, paid search is one of the best ways to grow leads and sales for a B2B business. So how can your business reap the benefits?
It’s easy for any business to get excited about a new marketing initiative to expect instantaneous results. However, B2B companies should remember the length of the sales cycle before embarking on a digital advertising campaign. Typically, the B2B sales cycle is much longer than a standard B2C sale. A well-designed digital advertising campaign may take some time, but the profit margins can be well worth the wait. A single sale could pay for an entire digital advertising campaign! Patience is the name of the game.
Building Your Strategy
There is a deep variety of digital advertising methods to choose from. Your tool selection should always align with your target audience's digital habits. You may have to do a bit of deep research to figure out the different ways your target audience is searching for solutions -- but don't be afraid to get creative here. For example, your B2B buyers are most likely using Facebook, even if they aren't using it for business.
The first step in building your strategy is to segment your campaigns. Segmenting your campaigns allows you to focus your efforts, resulting in better quality leads and increased conversion rates. Falls Digital recommends segmenting your campaigns by:
- Sub Categories
- Target Industries
- Geographical Locations
Despite recommending these diverse segmenting methods, it's simplest to start small and build and launch new campaigns over time. An upcoming promotion, event or new product/service launch may be your priority in the short-term.
Choosing Your Methodology
As mentioned earlier, there is a vast number of digital advertising channels at your company’s disposal. Once your campaigns are segmented, you can determine the best, most effective methods to target your audience. Below are some of the most popular digital advertising methods:
Pay-Per-Click (PPC): Used in traditional search engine marketing (SEM,) the advertiser only pays based on how many clicks the ad receives. The higher the keyword volume, the higher the cost per click.
Contextual Advertising: Targeted advertising where ads appear on websites or other medias based on relevant content and user identity.
Social Media Advertising: Any kind of paid content on a social media network. Target audiences that mimic your current followers with qualitative metrics such as common interests or demographics.
Geofencing: A location-based digital advertising tool that lets marketers send messages to smartphone users in a specific geographical location.
Keywords are the life blood of every paid search campaign, no matter the nature of the business. Identify the most focused and relevant keywords for your segmented campaigns.
Always target keywords with the searcher in mind. If your B2B business sells specific products with part and model numbers, include them in your keyword strategy! Specific, long-tail keywords can come in handy when bidding on exact-search terms and crafting ad copy.
Writing Ad Copy
The verbiage used in B2B marketing is dramatically different than the terms utilized by B2C businesses. For example, a B2B company rarely would use the CTA “buy now.” You are working with potential customers who are conducting research and need time before committing to a large purchase for their business. Write ad copy that pre-qualifies visitors, so the traffic your website receives is more relevant and targeted to your business.
Landing pages are an often-overlooked component of a successful B2B advertising campaign, but they are necessary for campaign conversion optimization. The landing page and corresponding form on the page provide a place for leads to submit their information. To ensure your landing page is effective enough to capture conversions, offer a small incentive such as a product demo or free evaluation. At this point, your business has already paid for the click, so create your landing page with a specific objective in mind, and make that objective the sole focus of the page.
Hire a Digital Marketing Agency
Digital advertising campaigns can be extremely effective in generating leads and sales for B2B companies. However, they are often time-consuming and costly if executed improperly. To ensure a positive ROI, consider hiring a digital marketing agency to handle your campaigns. These outsourced experts have the time, energy and resources to make your digital advertising efforts a success! If your business is looking for a quick way to boost your bottom line, consider launching a digital advertising campaign before the fiscal year comes to a close.
Want more information on digital advertising campaigns for B2B companies? Contact the experts at Falls Digital. We’d love to help you achieve success.