A solid marketing plan is important for every B2B business, no matter how large or small. But while you’re planning the road map to your company’s future, small mistakes can lead to big problems down the road.
Here are six common mistakes to avoid when you’re planning a marketing strategy for your business.
Failing to even make marketing plan
The first mistake businesses make when planning their B2B marketing strategy is failing to create a marketing plan. Not having a marketing plan contradicts the basic idea of having a marketing strategy in the first place.
Developing an effective marketing plan isn’t easy. It takes time, research, reviews and considerations. Just hoping to hit the bull’s eye isn’t the best way to succeed, because hope isn’t a plan and it won’t attract buyers. You need a written outline or blueprint of the procedures and actions you plan to take to pursue potential customers and businesses to purchase your company’s products or services. So stop procrastinating, and realize the power and importance of a good marketing plan.
Sticking to an old marketing strategy
If your existing marketing plan is getting you new leads and is helping you meet your sales and profit goals, it’s working well. But that doesn’t means you don’t need a new marketing strategy. Old is gold, but sometimes the only constant is change. Just because your current B2B marketing plan is working doesn’t mean it will continue to work in the future.
Updating your existing plan is important. Existing strategies and goals need to be reviewed and updated at least on a quarterly or annual basis. Especially for small and micro B2B businesses, competitiveness and newness are a way to attract other businesses.
If you’re merely satisfied with your old marketing approach and don’t constantly look for better and unique means to improve, chances are you’re no better than your competition.
Misestimating your target audience
Another common mistake small businesses make is to misestimate their potential market. When starting a new marketing plan or strategy, it’s important to keep your target audience and its density in mind.
Many B2B marketers overestimate their potential market because they fail to research their own market at regular intervals. This sometimes leads a B2B business to select the wrong target audience.
It’s similar to throwing a party. If you don’t know how many people will come, you end up either making too much food or too little. Both cases lead to the waste and misuse of effort, time, money and resources. In the same way, if you don’t target your audience well, your marketing efforts will be ineffective.
So before making any strategy, ask this question: what is my company’s target audience? This will help you be realistic when making your marketing plans. And remember to narrow your market to businesses most likely to buy your products and services.
Neglecting your existing customers
Don’t underestimate the importance of existing customers. Marketing to new customers is important, but neglecting existing customers doesn’t lead your business anywhere. Remember that existing customers are the reason your company is in business in the first place.
Having good customer relationships is crucial for B2B businesses if they want to retain customers. Dissatisfied customers lead to customer turnover, which undermines your efforts in targeting new and potential clients. Balance both your new and existing customers. Plan your marketing strategy in such a way that it focuses on both gaining new consumers and filling the needs of the existing ones.
Having too many metrics and people
What’s the perfect recipe to mess up a marketing strategy? As the saying goes, too many cooks spoil the broth. Having loads of people plan your marketing strategy leads to clashes among team members, an unfocused strategy, and too many metrics to follow in the future, which will distract you from your main goals.
“Less is more” is the maxim to follow when it comes to choosing strategy planners and metrics for your business. B2B businesses shouldn’t hire numerous strategists. One or two are sufficient. A small team will help prioritize objectives and produce a clear set of metrics to measure progress.
Focusing on products, not solutions
The most common mistake that even big guns of B2B marketing make is to focus on products. In other words, advertising yourself doesn’t go down with buyers well.
In B2B, buyers are looking for solutions to their problems, so it’s important for your organization to focus on solutions rather than your products. This will raise your market value, as good offers and solutions result in lead generation. It will also increase your engagement with buyers and help you gain good customer relationships.
Avoiding these six common mistakes in your B2B marketing strategy will go a long way to prevent problems in your marketing plan, as well as ensure its success.