Understanding requirements early is the secret if you want to avoid feeling let down. It’s the secret to good school grades and happy customers in almost every field.
You got paid, but the customer does not use is bad news: You might feel good that you got paid and there are few customer support calls. But this could be a very costly strategy if many buyers are non-users. It turns the B2B buying center on its head. If many customers don’t experience the value of your offering, customer satisfaction, referrals, and market share can only go down.
In a digital marketing world of shiny new options in digital media, we underestimate the power of good old email. 60% small businesses do not use email marketing primarily because of all the glamorous talk of other forms of digital marketing. Compared to all other forms of digital marketing email marketing is most cost effective. One estimate puts $42 return on 1$ investment in email marketing.
Mailing list providers were the original third party cookies. They gathered contact details of different demographics and you could buy lists to mail (junk mail) to them.
The lingering pandemic, the Ukraine war, supply chain problems and inflation has all types of organizations reviewing their “value” proposition. The idea of an explicit contract in B2B and an implicit contract in B2C used to involve fewer parties. If there was a serious dispute there was arbitration, courts or government regulators who would step in and try to sort things out. No longer true in the world of instant social media. Think of Elon Musk’s Twitter purchase situation.
For everyday business it’s simply keeping your promises to your customers. To be fair, our experience is that Elon Musk is pretty good with Tesla in keeping customer promises. No matter how the Twitter acquisition plays out.
Since marketing is about customer value, it’s important to clarify the idea of value proposition in these challenging times:
B2B Technology markets can make switching by the customer too easy. Existing or legacy technology can become too cumbersome to use . Or refuses to realize its promise after trying for years. The client, in despair, becomes willing to try a new supplier. That supplier is willing to transfer the legacy system.
The solution is not to become sticky by merely embedding your technology in the customer’s processes. Or make the customer a hostage to your technology. Instead, it’s useful to think of what we learnt in the industrial B2B era as we continue to compete in the knowledge economy.
The trouble is that most businesses and their leaders don’t seem to fully appreciate the value of long term customer relationships. “New” customers sound more sexy than “Old” customers. On a lighter note, Tinder sounds more exciting than eHarmony. Our marketing academic audience knows about the 1987 seminal work by Dwyer, Schurr and Oh whereContinue reading “Customer Journey,CRM and Advertising Goals”
Gen X( Born 1965-1980) was willing to go along with the Baby Boomer/Jack Welch leadership style. Gen Y or Millennials ( Born 1981 to 1996) and Gen Z or Zoomers (Born 1997 – 2012) are very different. Gen Y and Z in the workforce and with the Great Resignation since the pandemic and 2021, we thought it was timely to rethink the Jack Welch style as discussed in our very popular posts on Jack Welch. When Satya Nadella took over as CEO of Microsoft in 2014, he made the reading of “Nonviolent Communication” by Marshall B. Rosenberg compulsory for the top management. Nadella’s predecessor Steve Balmer followed a version of the Jack Welch approach without the candor that Jack promoted at GE.
Engineering companies are often unsure as to how digital marketing is relevant for them. Frequently, they rely on the sales-force alone to clinch contracts. This can be challenging without digital marketing support. Engineering companies that are in B2B markets need to think in B2B Buy Task format as they structure their Google AdWords campaigns.
[ Note: This post was originally published on May 20, 2016 and due to the great interest of our dear readers this post is updated on March 3, 2021. We have added an example from aerospace from high tech manufacturing. The earlier example food manufacturing remains. In 2021 though, modern food processing facilities tend to be comparable to aerospace in terms of automation, digitization. We hope that this post will inspire readers from manufacturing to redouble their marketing efforts as we come out of COVID 19. ]
The 4th Step in the B2B Purchasing Process is comparison of bids received. This can be a great B2B Marketing Opportunity for new suppliers trying to get in .
The third step of the B2B Purchase Process is the Request for Proposal (RFP). As our dear readers have learnt, just because the job description is detailed and you check all the boxes, you do not get a job interview! Similarly, from the point of view of the B2B Marketer responding to RFP’s does not mean that there is equal opportunity for all vendors.