B2B marketing on a budget – 6 strategies to maximise your resources

So, you are a small business that is just ticking along but you know that your product is great, why do your customers not see this too? A few more sales could really make a difference, but you don’t have a big marketing budget to set the industry alight.
Here are a few simple tips of how you can ensure more sales at minimal or no cost to you.

1. New customers

Creating new leads is the number 1 on businesses’ wish lists, but how do you do that without resorting to cold calling? First – don’t cold call, I am sure there is a well-oiled script that everybody in your company reels off every time they receive a spam caller. Make sure you are visible online, convenient and quick to use, and easy to understand. Make sure your potential customers can find you online on those platforms they use. This presents you with a free way to advertise yourself, so make the most of it. Fill in your bio on all the big-player-sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram. Link back to your website. Use relevant hashtags and keywords.
Engage with customers in your industry by liking, commenting, retweeting and sharing their content.

2. Improve customer experience

62% of customers will spend more on a simple buying experience. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly, fast, easy to navigate and tells your customers clearly what you do. Have your contact details easily accessible and only put things on there that are interesting or important to your new and existing clients.

3. Remind your previous customers of your existence

A sale should not be where the relationship with your customer ends. There could be a million reasons why they have not come back – so send them an email or a letter. Offer a discount or a freebie next time they buy. Give rewards for referring your business to their network. If a customer returns and has a hassle-free experience, they halfway to becoming a loyal customer. The minimum follow-up should be to ask for feedback, this gives you data for testimonials.

4. Only useful, important, entertaining or exciting content

What are the kinds of questions you are answering all the time? For every time you have explained something in person, there are at least 100 people trawling the internet for answers.
You could:

  • Do a video tutorial or introduce a new product
  • Write a How-to guide
  • Write content in ‘list format’ such as this one. No more than 10 – nobody is interested in a ‘Top 40’ and it is wasted content
  • Use infographics that are informative/important to your audience
  • You can use these across your email marketing, social media pages, and your website
  • You can recycle some of the best performing post a few months later
  • Share relevant 3rd party content
  • Include customer testimonials in your online presence
  • You could even turn these into a slide show video (30 secs max.) – videos rank highly on engagement
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY – be active online and give your customers stuff they want to read or watch, or stuff they didn’t know was important to them
5. Create a loyalty/reward system
  • customers collect points to get free stuff
  • or you give them exclusive promotions or discounts if they come back within 30 days or spend over £££
  • Offer rewards for referring up to 3 new customers
6. Prove of how good you are – Industry awards
  • Most industries have awards that set the standard
  • Gives clients confidence in your business and is proof of your credibility and expertise
7. It’s party time!

Well, depends on your line of business or industry I guess. The term ‘event’ is probably more appropriate. This could be:

  • Online – offering a day or week of bonuses, discounts, deals and competitions
  • A real-life event to tempt new and existing customers to visit you
  • Opportunity to answer questions or introduce a new product or range
  • Create an inviting atmosphere, a buzz – drinks and nibbles, maybe a DJ if your budget allows
  • free samples – or any free stuff
  • A competition, giveaway or a raffle – basically free stuff

This allows for interesting content in the build-up. Use good-quality pictures on social media announcements or flyers and distribute across all your online platforms. Competitions make for online engagement. And finally, why not print some flyers and hand them out? It’s simple and cost-effective. These tips will help you to find new leads, strengthen existing ones and hopefully get people talking about your business.

How to generate leads for your small business in 2021

Leads are the lifeblood of every business.

In order to survive and thrive, your organisation will need to have a steady stream of sales leads, but even seasoned professionals can find it difficult at times.

It’s no surprise; securing that steady flow is hard work. It requires you to continuously attract new leads, qualify and nurture them, and ultimately turn them into customers. This process, called lead generation, is essentially a technique of finding the right mix of channels that will get you in front of the right people. Using an effective lead generation system will make this process a whole lot easier, but just like any tough job, lead generation requires you to invest some time and effort upfront.

If you’re not sure where to begin, this guide will get you started by leading you through five key strategies to capture and convert those all-important leads.

Create buyer personas

A lead is a prospective customer, so the obvious starting place is to work out just who is likely to buy your product or service, and how you can reach them. Begin this process with research – use the internet to find similar companies to you and see how their consumers are, and study your existing customers, you’ll learn a lot. Consider the basic components that make up a consumer – age, gender, likes, dislikes, purchase habits and financial situation, then feed these into a pen portrait to build buyer personas of your ideal prospect. You should also look closely at the information you hold on existing customers to help build this picture.

Build your marketing plan

Build your plan using SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Based) goals, and remember to employ a wide range of techniques, with a sharp focus on inbound marketing techniques designs to draw potential clients to you. This ensures the leads coming to you are ‘warm’, making your job securing the customer that bit easier. Here are a few of our recommended inbound techniques:

Digital Advertising

Social media channels and search engines offer incredibly targeted ways of getting your business in front of potential leads. Often referred to as Pay Per Click, they are an effective way to get visitors to your site.

SEO

Digital advertising won’t work for every business, and in some cases SEO is worth greater investment. Google gets an incredible 3.5 billion searches a day, making it prime real estate for lead gen. SEO will improve your visibility in search engine rankings – hopefully keeping you away from the fateful second page of Google results! It must be routinely updated and maintained in order to bring in a steady stream of leads, but when done well can bring in endless warm leads ready to be converted to customers.

A Statista survey conducted among marketing professionals in the US, found that 43% of respondents believed SEO to be the most effective channel in producing high ROI, so this is a powerful place to invest your lead gen budget.

Blogging

Creating engaging content that is promoted well will position you as a thought leader in your field, demonstrating your credibility and bringing a human element to your company. Be sure to include a call to action at the end of each post.

Build a sales pipeline

Once your leads start coming in they’ll need to be nurtured to be transferred into sales. Using a sales funnel model will allow you to organise your customers journey. Once in place, your pipeline will also give you an overview of where prospects are in the sales process. There are a number of reputable platforms that can support this work.

Embrace automation

As you begin to get leads in, you’ll need to find an efficient way to keep in contact with them and nurture them through the pipeline. Plan ahead and look at where automation, such as email marketing, could help you in this process. The beauty of automation is its ability to allow you to scale your marketing efforts whilst keeping your content personalised to your audience. Automation does not mean impersonal – Liana Technologies reported that almost 70% of marketers found improved targeting of messages was one the most important benefits of marketing automation.

All of your prospects have different needs, and having the option to treat them as such will seriously strengthen your relationship. Look for an email service that offers segmentation and tailored, dynamic content which gives you the chance to customise content based on your contact’s needs.

Harness the power of social media marketing

Social media now stands as one of the most effective lead generation channels, and it should therefore feature significantly in your strategy. These platforms are excellent for enabling relationship-building, and once you begin regularly posting engaging content, you’ll attract followers who you can then drive to your website. Here are our top suggestions for using the major platforms to generate leads:

Twitter

According to Optin Monster, 66% of people have discovered a new business on Twitter, so it’s a great place to make yourself heard. Promote your new content such as your blogs, and stay active. Commenting, sharing and engaging is vital to keep a vibrant community.

LinkedIn

One of the smartest things you can do on LinkedIn is to take advantage of the platform’s targeted advertising. It’s in users best interested to keep their profiles up to date, which makes LinkedIn an advertisers dream – you can zone in on just about any part of your audiences profile.

Facebook

Like LinkedIn, Facebook has some incredibly precise targeting options. The platform gives you the option to create campaigns using a Lead Generation objective that allows consumers to fill in a form with their contact information. Most internet users are on Facebook, therefore it’s unsurprising that Smart Bug Media reported that 84% of marketers choose to use this platform to acquire leads.

Remember, business growth can be a difficult and long-term process, and a sign of sustainable progress is a steady increase in sales, rather than random sale spikes. Following these tips will give you insight and overview, allowing you to scale your operations up gradually. Good luck!