Growth is Hard for Tech Companies
Growing a business is hard. Whether you are a tech startup or an established technology business, growth is a constant challenge.
Tech businesses often struggle to survive. Why is that? Is their product or service bad, or is there really no market for the product? Maybe—but perhaps there are other factors at play.
Field of Dreams Mentality
Every B2B technology entrepreneur starts with a dream to build an epic product or service that solves a problem better than every other solution. They dream that their solution will be snatched up by millions of customers.
This dream often leads technology companies to make a major mistake. The mistake is thinking like Ray Kinsella in the 1989 film, Field of Dreams: “If we build it, they will come.” Businesses do this all the time. I like to call this the Field of Dreams mentality.
The Field of Dreams mentality traps tech companies into focusing on the product first. Product development is critical, but it is only one piece of a winning business strategy. Falling prey to this approach can be a death sentence for your company. So what’s the solution?
Marketing Opens the Door to Growth
Before you ever build anything, you should focus on the customer first. This is where marketing comes in. Marketing should be part of your business plan from day one.
Marketing plays the most critical role in drawing in new customers and building awareness. This isn’t up for debate — you must allocate a portion of your budget to B2B marketing activities to grow and survive. Specifically, you should allocate your marketing budget to digital marketing.
What Exactly is Digital Marketing?
Digital marketing is the practice of promoting a company’s brand, products, and services through the internet. It can be any online marketing strategy that is being utilized, including, but not limited to:
- Content marketing
- Search engine marketing (SEO)
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing
- Online Advertising
Why is Digital Marketing Important for B2B Tech?
All B2B companies and top tech companies should be utilizing digital marketing because it works. Regardless of company size, digital marketing can help you grow your business.
If done properly, it can be more effective than cold calling. Depending on your business, you may even be able to get by without a sales team at first.
Here are five additional reasons digital marketing should be utilized by b2b tech businesses.
1. Modern consumers are digital consumers
Your audience uses online channels for entertainment, to maintain social lives, and to make purchasing decisions. Since today’s consumers are digital, your marketing efforts should be as well.
2. Your business can significantly increase reach and brand awareness
A strong digital marketing strategy is designed to reach people at every point in the customer journey. Since tech buyers spend their days online, digital marketing can help you connect with them at many different stages in the buying cycle.
Some research suggests the average person spends 23 hours per week online in some form. With the right placement of your marketing messages, you can reach people at work, while they’re searching for information, or while they’re shopping online.
3. Your brand can provide more interactive experiences through digital channels
Digital channels offer two-way communication with your audience. This allows for more authentic, immersive customer experiences.
One example is posting a poll to gauge how your audience feels about a topic. You are only limited by your creativity.
4. Respond to trends and changes in real-time
In traditional marketing, if you run a print ad, you can’t change direction if it isn’t working. You also can’t always test how effective the ad will be in advance. This is not the case with digital marketing.
Since you and your business control your digital marketing initiatives, you can act quickly if things aren’t working. You can also make changes to your messaging and adapt to new customer needs as they arise.
5. Easily track and monitor your digital campaigns
Nearly every online marketing initiative is measurable. Free tools from Google and the reporting features for social media ads make it simple to measure campaigns. Even email marketing is easily tracked.
If you can measure your campaigns, you can find out what works and what doesn’t. Refining your marketing as you go will make it even more effective over time.
Top 5 Digital Marketing Strategies that Work
Digital marketing involves any marketing practice that targets internet users on desktop computers, laptops, mobile devices, or tablets. That might sound like it encompasses a lot of things—because it does! There are entire agencies and marketing teams that focus on individual aspects of digital marketing.
You may feel overwhelmed by what you don’t know at this point. You do not need to do everything all at once. Here are the top 5 marketing strategies you can start today.
1. Content Marketing
Content marketing is the creation and distribution of any online marketing material. It can be in the form of text, videos, images, or a combination of all of these. The key thing to remember with content marketing is it should educate your audience.
Your content should NOT be promotional in nature. Educational content is the best and most effective way to build trust.
Here are the main types of content marketing you can utilize for your business.
Blog posts are shorter articles on your company website. Topics should be related to your industry and business. Blogs should address problems your clients face and how to solve them.
The content should aim to be educational and helpful for your audience.
Ebooks are long-form content. Different from blogs, these should be much more thorough and cover topics in detail.
Use Ebooks as lead magnets to collect contact details from your audience.
One of the best ways to promote your business is by demonstrating how you helped your clients. Success stories are a real-world example of how your solutions and services helped a client succeed.
These can be in a well-designed, downloadable PDF on your site. The goal should be to capture important quotes, facts, and details from your raving fans. Let them tell others how great you are.
Video content can be any length. They can be a Q&A format, animation, text with music, or anything else in between. Videos are significantly more engaging than images and text.
Not every video needs to be professionally produced. You can use your phone to record a quick two to five minute video on any number of topics and share them on social media.
Webinars are mini virtual lectures or roundtable discussions. You can use webinars to talk directly about a problem in your clients’ industries.
No one wants to sit through a webinar that is an hour-long sales presentation. Make sure it is educational, informative, and helpful!
Podcasts offer open and free-form discussions. Podcasts can be video or audio-only. They can reach a wider audience by having guests on to answer questions your listeners may have.
Podcasts are quite popular today and are a great way to attract and connect with potential leads.
Infographics are graphical representations of stats or other complex data. Infographics are useful in creatively sharing data, numbers, and other facts.
Use Infographics on your blog or social media. If it is powerful and engaging, your audience will likely share it as well.
2. Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing involves promoting your content and brand on social media channels. You can share any of the previously mentioned content on social media. You can also share content from other sources.
Social media enables you to engage directly with your audience. There are many social platforms available. The main ones for B2B businesses in 2022 are:
A good rule of thumb when starting off is to focus on one platform first. For most B2B tech companies, LinkedIn is the best platform to start with. Then expand to other platforms once you’ve mastered it.
3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is an entire discipline in itself. It involves all the practices and strategies involved in making your website appear in top search results.
SEO can be complex and requires a bit more technical training to really master it.
4. Email Marketing
Email marketing involves sending content to a targeted list of prospects through email. Email is still a very powerful and effective marketing tool because it gives you direct access to a person’s inbox.
A well-designed and well-written email can get attention and drive people to take action.
5. Online Press Releases
Because press releases appear as news, it is a great way to promote your company and help build domain authority.
You can write press releases for a variety of newsworthy events. If you need some ideas, check out our blog on how to write effective press releases
How to Start Doing Digital Marketing Today
If you feel overwhelmed at this point, that’s ok. You can’t do everything at once and good marketing takes time. If you don’t know where to start, you can never go wrong with blogging.
Start making a list of the questions your prospects might have. Use these questions to form blog topics and start writing. Aim for simplicity and clarity in your blog copy.
Need expert help? Please contact us today. At the very least, we can help point you in the right direction.