Delivering real results depends on knowledge and insight about your customer needs and why they do business with you. At FIG we see the true value of undertaking insight and strategy at the start of a project or customer relationship.
The ever-changing business landscape means that no business can stand still or continue to do the same things year on year, and a company going for growth uses insight and strategy to identify clear customer needs to shape its business offering.
You could argue that B2C marketers are well ahead of the curve in terms of understanding their customer needs and undertaking buyer persona research. It could also be argued that B2B companies often market to businesses rather than individuals resulting in messaging that talks product features and price, rather than having real conversations about the benefits of their products and services and how they resolve challenges.
For all their buyer persona research, B2C marketers are mainly dealing with mass markets of millions. The B2B marketplace is much more specific and B2B companies usually know their customers very well, in many cases having retained business relationships for several years.
So why should B2B companies undertake insight into the marketing mix if they already know their customers so well?
B2B marketing has been changing rapidly over the past few years. B2B marketers have embraced digital marketing to great advantage.
Jumping on the bandwagon, so to speak, has been effective for many B2B companies, until, like everything you reach saturation point and with more and more competition, it becomes less effective. So, to become more effective companies have to work smarter, introduce insight and make their marketing more targeted.
In our many years’ experience working in B2B markets, one of the most common difficulties companies face is communicating what they do effectively. Many focus too much on the ‘how’ their products work and less on the ‘why’ people should do business with them. The ‘why’ is the emotion and connects with the people in the business. And after all, it is the people who make the decisions to do business so we need to connect with them.
If B2B businesses are spending money on all of this digital marketing it’s critical that the messaging is on point. That’s where insight can really make a difference, to help businesses get a true understanding of who their customers are, what they really want, how you can help them and how best to reach them. Even when companies have great relationships with their customers, a third party insight exercise can be enlightening. It takes the guesswork and assumptions out of your messaging and means your marketing can be much more targeted and effective.
Customers might choose to work with you for more reasons than you think. Customer insight will help you to identify your real point of difference. Why do your customers choose to buy from you? Unless you really do offer something completely unique, it probably won’t be as straight forward as your product or service, it could be because of the relationship they have with your staff, or the speed to market of your products, or your ability to offer a complete service.
This point of differentiation is what you should be communicating in your blogs, on your videos and social media, on your website and in your PR.
Qualitative research with staff and customers and other stakeholders is central to gain a true understanding about what you do and why people do business with you. It contributes to the successful targeting of the right audience, tailoring the right messages, building the right campaigns and creating personalised customer experiences that will see the greatest results for your marketing spend.
If FIG can help you with an insight project, to truly understand the needs and requirements of your customers to make your marketing more effective, give us a call on 01457 857111.