Most B2B marketers know tons about their own products but little about their customers. For years, they’ve focused on selling products rather than helping customers solve problems. To adapt to this new way of doing business, marketers need to know as much about customers as they can.
Becoming customer centric requires a mindset shift inside your organization. It’s not an easy process, which is why some B2B companies have avoided this step.
Unless you know who your buyers are, how they play a role in the decision-making process, and what steps they take to arrive at their decision, your content is just window dressing for your website. Or worse, spam in your prospect’s inbox.
To be successful in B2B marketing, you need to get involved in your prospect’s research process as early as possible. You have to be more relevant and useful than your competitors by sharing engaging and educational information. Rather than creating content to support the sales cycle, you need to design a revenue model that matches the buyer journey and aligns lead- nurturing content to that model.
Here are some ways to turn your organization’s point of view from inside out, to outside in:
Think of your brand as a service.
Your job isn’t to win contests based on how clever your collateral or campaigns are, nor is it about keeping track of how many “likes” your company has on Facebook. And it’s absolutely not about your product features. It’s about how many relationships you foster and what you do to make them flourish. You need to campaign for this idea within your company and convince others that this is the new path to success.
Learn everything there is to know about your customers.
It’s astonishing just how little insight B2B marketers have about their customers, especially when compared to their B2C counterparts who have rafts of psychographic and demographic information about their customers. For far too long, B2B companies have been preoccupied with products and services while customers have been an afterthought. Now it’s time to listen, gather data, and draw insights from inside and outside your company. Marketers have to lead this process because it informs much of what marketing does. Customer knowledge sharpens your content marketing and lead-nurturing strategies and helps you tie marketing to revenue.
Keep the focus on the customer, even after the sale.
It’s conventional wisdom that landing new customers can cost as much as five times more than keeping the customers you have. In this new marketing environment, you need to adopt a customer engagement mentality around your customers before and after they buy. This allows you to onboard them successfully, expand your relationship with them beyond the initial sale, and cultivate a lifelong partnership that encourages them to sing your praises far across the digital landscape.
A truly customer-centric marketing organization can hook prospects with engaging content, nurture them with useful information, and guide them to sales.
This is an excerpt from the Yesler B2B Change Agent Handbook. Download it now to get more ideas about how you can improve your B2B marketing.