What We Learned Of B2B Digital Marketing In 2017 And So Should You?

Digital marketing, today, needs to go bolder. And when we talk of ‘bolder’, it takes a lot – from doing different things to doing things differently. But by doing them right!

This was the core of our digital marketing strategies in 2017. From implementing Podcasts on our website to moving towards Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) and from cutting down the number of produced content to focusing more on visuals, we incorporated many new things. Though some of the tactics worked well on expectations and some didn’t, the lessons we learned make us appreciate both.

Below I have summed up some of the biggest lessons we learned the previous year that are going to influence and mold our 2018 Marketing Strategies. If you are planning to alter your roadmaps for the future, we hope these can prove helpful to you:

Short-form content is not just for qualified leads:

Is it correct to use short-form content in B2B marketing?

This is a much-raised question that turns many B2B marketers stagger to their content. Many content marketers claim short-form content piece to be less engaging as it does not suffice the B2B buyer’s purpose of knowing and that it works well only in the case of qualified leads or while interacting with the audience that is not new to your brand.

The truth is, short-form content can do more than this.

In 2017, our Blue Mail Media’s content marketing team worked specifically on creating short-form content – short infographics, short videos, and short blog pieces.

We also infused GIF images in the various forms of content:

To our surprise, we got improved engagement not just from the qualified leads but also from people for whom we are a new or unknown brand.

Now we can relate to Forbes when it says: “Write short, pithy posts. After 750 words—or sometimes after only half that – you risk losing your reader’s attention”.

Statistics speak more of credibility in Social Media:

Your B2B users, be it existing or potential, love statistics. They believe in numbers coming from authentic sources, and their business decisions are made on the basis of the percentage of credibility that you are offering.

We implemented this technique in our content pieces. Our marketing team gathered industry-specific facts based on the latest research and findings. We shared these stats as Quickbytes on social media platforms as well as stats-specific pages on the company website as per a scheduled calendar.

This form of content brought us an increase in the CTR with enhanced engagement. Here’s an example of a similar post:

#Tip: One key to grab the attention of the B2B consumers is, to be honest with them and to let them know they are interacting with an expert in the industry.

New in-demand services are better explained with videos:

In 2017, we launched some in-demand services like Account Intelligence and CustomPro Services and presented them mainly through video marketing.

As per the data given by Cisco, videos will drive 80% of all internet traffic by 2019.

Our Blue Mail Media’s team executed this practice, and the results were impressive.

Information provided by videos appeals more to the viewers and stays in their memory for longer. Also, it cuts down the time in reading a lengthy content page of a website. Thus, we created videos demonstrating specific services and added those videos to the related service pages. We experienced a noticeable growth in the engagement rate on such pages.

Here’s our Custom Pro Service video:

Less in number, better in quality

The IOT in today’s digital world has brought a massive shift in the ways B2B buying decisions are made. B2B buyers have become more intimidating, more demanding, and challenging to persuade. This urge to convince them has made content marketers around the world to come up with content after content. And the results are terrible – there is so much of content heaped out there on the web that goes unused.

So, we came up with a plan of doing more with less.

We reduced the number of blogs we were creating previously and focused on writing blogs, articles, whitepapers, infographics, and eBooks purely based on research and latest findings. Focusing on delivering credible content, below are the 100 Email Marketing Statistics we implemented on our website:

100 Email Marketing Statistics

Applying this tactic, we found our blog posts, infographics, and other forms of content were more engaging than the previous ones and noticed a rise in the number of repeated customers. It also helped as to get brand-mentions from brands like Demand Gen Report:

Demand Gen Report

B2B marketing can go seasonal, humorous, and not so boring

And it works!

One cannot deny that B2B marketing cannot follow the footprints of B2C entirely but one cannot say no to the fact that it’s always better to steal something that is need of the time. B2b buyers, too, are people and people buy from people. They have emotions that they apply– knowingly or unknowingly. Hence, it’s never too late to add a slight emotional touch to your content marketing strategies.

In 2017, we roll out some seasonal campaigns with a little fun and not to surprise; they performed really well. Below is the screenshot of #BlueMailMediaCarol for B2B marketers that we posted during Christmas:

Blue Mail Media Carol

#Tip: Bring humor and fun to your B2B marketing campaigns but always follow the voice of your brand. In the haste of doing something different, don’t do something that you are not!

Roadmap for 2018:

We have stepped in 2018 and now is the time to create your roadmaps. Learn more about your potential and existing buyers, their pain-points, and the marketing channels they are more likely to use. Categorize your roadmaps according to those channels, define objectives, KPI’s, and required tools with the proposed budget. Here’s an example:

Roadmap for 2018

#Bonus tip: On the basis of the results driven from our 2017 marketing strategies, we focused on investing on new in-house technologies and tools aiming at improving quality-data and enhancing customer satisfaction on our 2018 digital marketing roadmap.

What worked for us might work for you differently, and we hope that what we learned might prove helpful to you. Try these tips and let your content do a new marketing for you.