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Business-to-Business Roundup 2019!

Over the past eight weeks, we at TopRight have been firing off our most urgent and transformational insights into the world of business-to-business (B2B) marketing. Is it safe to spy on B2B competitors? And what is B2B marketing anyway? What does the value of trust have to do with B2B branding? Below you’ll see the answers to these questions and many more. Click on the links to read the full articles. And please enjoy!

And now, for the next two months, TopRight will move on to greener pastures—a completely new marketing topic to mull over. From September 1 to October 31, 2019, the theme under review will be the ins and outs and ups and downs of Marketing to Millennials. Who are these kids anyway—and are they even kids anymore? What’s the best way to get them to listen to you? And answer me this, are they those selfish, whiny, lazy little tykes, or are they the most highly educated and tech-savviest generation since la belle époque? They can’t really be both—or can they? Anyway, find out the answer to these and plenty of other questions in the coming months.

And if you haven’t yet, please sign up for our blog now. (Or give Dave a shout on Twitter or LinkedIn any time.) Do also look into scheduling a consultation with one of our marketing experts.

For now, enjoy TopRight’s 2019 business-to-business roundup!

 

CEO Dave Sutton wrote about the best 5 ways to (legally!) spy on B2B competitors.

“When you run your marketing campaigns, you can consider these strategies to come up with more relevant and enticing marketing materials to influence your audience. When you spy on your competitors, not only will you be able to gain actionable insights about the best ways to market your brand, but you will avoid spending thousands of dollars on market research. Just look at what your competitors are doing, pay close attention to what’s working, then improve the things that are working, and avoid the things that aren’t.

It’s not risky at all—just effective.”

 

Principal Judi Friedman wrote about why B2B and B2C marketing share more than you think.

B2B marketing is just like any other kind of marketing. Why? Simple. Because business clients—that COO or the CBO—are as human as any consumer. They have desires, needs, curiosities, motivations. All you need to do is find a way to spark an interest. You make a big mistake when you assume that those who make up the B2B space are drained of all interests or personality. When you do that, you go down the road of dry, dull, predictable marketing—and then you seal your own self-fulfilling fate. You make boring stuff because you presume boredom.”

 

CMO Chris Weissman wrote about what business-to-business marketers must learn from their B2C brethren.

In B2B marketing, it’s all about finding relevant and trusted people who can advocate for a product or service based on their expertise. Some companies play it safe, finding experts who have used the product for a long time and are able to speak to the strengths of the product. Others will risk a bad review by placing the products with prospective new users and in return ask for an honest evaluation. All of this amounts to available forms of influence that can and should be used by B2B marketers.”

 

COO Bill Fasig wrote about why trust matters in business-to-business transformation.

“About eight years ago, I was living in Silicon Valley working for a major tech company. At that time, as now, Amazon was the biggest success around and admired by many for its unbeatable customer service and growing market domination. They were the B2C company par excellence. We—or at least I—had never thought of them as a tech innovator or a company that could provide top-tier back-end services for online sales.

One afternoon, an Amazon representative showed up to our offices and, rather unexpectedly, began pitching something called Amazon Web Services, or AWS. We’d all been used to a consumer-oriented brand, totally devoted to awe-inspiring direct-to-consumer services. But this conception of the company, as I was learning, was about to be turned on its head.”

 

CEO Dave Sutton wrote (again) about what it takes to stand out in a crowded B2B market.

After just the first year of working with Albert, Toniste saw major gains he wouldn’t have seen otherwise: 122% increase in leads, 30% reduction in marketing spend, and an incredible 432% return on ad spend. …This old Norwegian legacy brand is no longer constrained by old habits and traditional marketing. It stands reborn, a fully transformed modern company and a soaring symbol of what ambitious, digitally transformed big business can do for brands in the contemporary telecoms market. Through the use of AI and smart digital branding and storytelling, Telenor has carved a new niche for itself in an overcrowded 21st-century B2B field.”

 

Now peruse these great supplementary posts from around the web!

Forbes on the real influence of social media influencers in the B2B world.

“While B2C brands were establishing relationships with mega-influencers, the B2B brands I was working with were barely on social media. Later, when B2C brands were starting to figure out that consumers weren’t as wowed by celebrity endorsements as they used to be, B2B brands were courting the Kylie Jenners and Selena Gomezes of the Instagram world.”

CFO Magazine on China’s moving in on the U.S. B2B market.

“Alibaba is going toe-to-toe with Amazon in a high-stakes move to grab a share of the U.S. business-to-business e-commerce market. The Chinese e-commerce giant is now inviting its buyers to become sellers, offering capabilities including domestic payments, marketing tools, and a U.S.-based support team.”

VisionCritical on some examples of straight-up successful B2B marketing campaigns.

“While it’s easy to think of memorable examples of successful business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing campaigns—think of the Super Bowl ads that get the most attention—it’s much more difficult to think of B2B marketing examples that get people talking. Why is that?”

Ad Exchanger on why the myth of the easy B2B marketing strategy is a total lie.

“Complexity comes in multiple forms. To create the right messaging and tools to drive sales, today’s B2B CMOs need to understand not just their customers and their buyer journeys but also the technical facets of their offerings.”

Forbes on why you need to think harder about your B2B messaging.

“The only reasons these methods have been so effective is that 1) we have an offer that our niche wants and 2) we craft messaging that sells. So, let’s break down how to craft messaging that gets executives’ attention and generates high-value meetings, fast.”

Shumacher on why you need to be more strategic with your content development.

“Content development is one of the most important yet underrated activities B2B marketers can do for their website presence online. Yet so few people know how to consistently and strategically create great content to serve their website or business objectives.”

Dare to learn more? Interested in our signing up for our easy and awesome marketing health check? Either way, follow Dave Sutton @toprightpartner or visit him on LinkedIn. And if you still need another fix, grab a copy of Dave’s new book, Marketing, Interrupted.