As consumers, we’re all familiar with the ease that Amazon brings to everyday life. When you run out of something, why spend time driving to the store, hassling with parking and all that goes along with errands when instead you can find what you need, order with just a few clicks and see a smiling box on your porch just days (or even hours) later?
It turns out businesses are catching on to this trend as well. Known as the “Amazon Effect,” a recent Forrester survey found that “68% of B2B buyers now use online search to make work-related purchases.” As businesses gravitate toward online purchases, it is estimated that 41% of revenue across all industries will stem from digital purchases by the end of 2020.
Diane Fanelli, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Global Platform Channels at SAP said, “These statistics reveal a stark truth about how technology is reshaping the relationship between B2B buyers and sellers.”
“If you think the traditional sales channel is your only sales channel, you are not understanding the Amazon effect.”
“If you are not designing your product [or service] to be showcased and bought digitally, you’ve really missed the mark,” Fanelli says. “If you think the traditional sales channel is your only sales channel, you are not understanding the Amazon effect.”
Surviving (& Thriving In) the Amazon Age
Not only is it important to the overall success of a B2B organization to use digital marketing, it is imperative that they implement a documented strategy to ensure its success. The Content Marketing Institute’s 2020 B2B Content Marketing Survey results highlight the importance of a documented digital strategy for B2B organizations.
The percentage of B2B content marketers that document their strategy has been slowly increasing over the past several years, and it has become a key indicator of success. The survey shows 69% of the most successful marketers had a documented content marketing strategy. WildRock’s Strategic Sprint is our most popular offering, providing the information that businesses need to hit the ground running. With a high-impact, 2-hour strategy session and a look “under the hood” at your current marketing efforts, we’re able to bring back fresh ideas and market findings to drive rockstar results.
Top Digital Media Tactics
The top three types of content B2B marketers cited as keys to their success were social media, blog posts, and email newsletters. Blog posts and social media were listed as the top digital platforms to build brand awareness. While most business owners know a strong online presence is key to building brand awareness, driving traffic to your website can be challenging. Luckily, you can easily apply the same strategies that these top-dog businesses are using to your business too!
Blog posts are an effective and inexpensive way to boost SEO, provide useful information to your audience, develop relationships, establish your brand’s expertise, and create opportunities for sharing which provides even more online visibility (free advertising!). According to this report, nearly 80% of companies that use blogging as a part of their marketing strategy reported acquiring customers through their efforts. On top of that, 82% of businesses say that blogging is critical for their business.
There is a reason over 1/3 of the world’s population uses social media. Aside from all of the business-related reasons social media is important, it also humanizes your brand and allows you to have a more personal connection with your audience that would otherwise be impossible. Through your social media channels you have the opportunity to show how you are upholding your brand’s values, looking out for the best interests of your customers and employees, and maintaining integrity with your product or service.
Jump Start Your Digital Efforts
Still not convinced digital marketing is necessary for your B2B organization? There is proof that these increased efforts really do pay off! B2B marketers have achieved goals such as creating brand awareness, educating their audience(s), building credibility, generating leads, building customer/client loyalty, and of course increasing sales.
Only 35% of all survey respondents and less than a quarter of small (1-99 employees) organizations still use traditional paid advertising. If you are ready to ramp up your digital content marketing strategy and crush your business goals, here are some tips to get you started:
- Create a game plan.
- Have tools in place to track analytics.
- Regroup often to evaluate which strategies are working well and which ones need to be improved.
- Consider finding an agency partner who’s an expert in the space. This will save you the headache of getting up to speed on current trends and allow your team the time and energy to focus on other business goals.
Over a third of the organizations surveyed employed between two and five full time team members dedicated to content marketing, and 50% outsourced content marketing activities. If you’re not keen on creating content from scratch, our team can help you implement an entire digital strategy from beginning to end. We plug into your existing team, addressing your unique needs and helping drive toward 2020 business goals.
So, what are you waiting for? As a boutique agency, WildRock’s team is ready to hit the ground running. With a proven track record in everything from digital marketing to PR services to strategy, we’re here to act as an extension of your team and drive results. We are ready to help you win big in 2020!