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January 17, 2022
There’s a saying that it takes a village to raise a child. Well, now it also takes a community to build your business.
Today’s business customers—the B2B buyers are bombarded with 100’s if not 1000’s of messages daily across numerous platforms, channels, and devices as product and service providers compete for their attention. Much of these messages are delivered under the guise of content, aimed to provide direction, insights, and guidance to help the B2B buyer achieve their objectives.
However, as Neha Ahuja, Senior Principal at Gartner reports in one of their B2B Sales strategy reports:
“The sheer volume of high-quality information presents a problem for customers. First, there is too much of it and second, customers find that information from different suppliers is often trustworthy but contradictory.” (Source: Why B2B Sellers Need a Sense Making Sales Strategy, Gartner, November 2019.)
As a result, these time-poor B2B buyers are often confused and overwhelmed.
At the same time, B2B buyers often hold leadership roles within their companies and are trying to:
Juggling both of these important roles can be an enormous challenge even for the most seasoned business leader. However, there is a way forward often overlooked by many operating in B2B—community marketing.
Community marketing is about bringing together a group of similar people that are connecting and engaging, allowing them to share ideas to help each other to grow and succeed. It is about providing a hub where clients and prospects with shared interests, problems, and objectives can learn, be supported, and be heard. As a product or service provider, it can enable you to create real conversations and genuine relationships.
So, why is Community Marketing Needed in B2B?
Community marketing is needed more than ever as a result of 3 key factors:
The key to effective B2B Community Marketing is to provide useul, practical resources that helps members identify and use to solve their specific challenges.
When doing so, it is important to keep the following considerations in mind:
And finally, B2B Community Marketing at all times should adhere to the fundamental “Golden Rule” which is NO SELLING!!
There are significant benefits that Community Marketing provides including:
To establish a community for your company, consider undertaking these steps:
Establishing trust is critical to business success and it is extremely hard to gain. Furthermore, there is now a heightened need for a sense of belonging and to connect with like-minded people that you can both learn from and support each other. Community marketing can help your company meet these key challenges in the ever-changing world of B2B.
Read more: Everything old is new again: Scott McCorkell’s marketing predictions for 2022
Read more:Bank closures are disruptive to SMEs and may have a wider community impact: Ombudsman
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Michael Haynes is an SME Business Growth Specialist that works with CEOs of service-based companies seeking to grow through the acquisition and retention of business (B2B) clients. His company, Listen Innovate Grow is based in Sydney, Australia and works with companies globally.
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