Top 10 Common Mistakes in B2B Marketing and How to Avoid Them

  • Date Published
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Business-to-business marketing – or B2B marketing as it is more commonly referred to – is the process of marketing products and services to other businesses.

As marketers, we like to think that we’re doing the best possible job. While our intentions may align with this – as well as our efforts – there are a few things that we may end up doing that are neither in our best interests nor in the interests of our clients.

In an ever-evolving digital world, B2B marketing mistakes are bound to creep in every once in a while. But this is not a train smash, as we’re only humans. What matters is how we go about identifying the errors we make when it comes to business marketing, and more importantly, how we set out to fix these B2B marketing mistakes. So, to help you know what the most common mistakes B2B marketers make are, we’ve compiled a list. The purpose is not to point fingers, but rather to help you make the most of your business marketing efforts.

So, What Is B2B Marketing?

To recap, B2B marketing is the process of marketing products and services to other businesses. It differs from B2C marketing in that it doesn’t target consumers. Instead, it targets business purchases and the decision-makers behind them. This makes B2B marketing more specialized in nature, which is why it needs to be tailored to suit the needs of the business that will be investing in the offer available.

In the business world, B2B marketers are often tasked with winning over buying committees that are made up of various stakeholders within a business. This makes it a rather complex process to manage, which contributes to some of the mistakes B2B marketers make.

Now that we’ve got the basics of B2B marketing down, we can take a look at the most common mistakes taking place within this space. We’ll also look at the simple fixes you can implement if you happen to be making some of them.

10 Common B2B Marketing Mistakes

1. Too Much Jargon

The business marketing space is specialized, so it makes sense to include jargon relevant to the industry in question. While this can be a good practice, there is such a thing as too much jargon.

Above and beyond that, some marketers include jargon merely to make it seem relevant without considering whether a particular term will be understood. If you are using jargon or technical terms, make sure that you are using them correctly and within the right context.

The fix: Don’t overuse jargon, as it may look unprofessional and be off-putting to potential customers and clients. Consider your audience as well as their level of education and knowledge. Make your content relatable to them – don’t try and force it.

2. Name-dropping in Excess

Although you are marketing a business, constantly name-dropping it can look cheap. You are positioning yourself as an expert, so structure your content in a way that can link back to your business without seeming forceful.

The fix: Instead of identifying an issue that your business can address, share valuable insight on the topic as well as the potential solutions, and then link it all back to your offering. Remember, it’s not about you; it’s about what the client is able to get out of it all.

3. Consider the Design

Whatever marketing collateral you choose to share needs to be responsive. If you include a link, make sure it works. If you’re directing people to your website, ensure that it is user-friendly and responds to every click. The world has made the move to digital, and in a competitive world, you need to ensure that all your digital efforts are on par with everyone else’s, if not better.

The fix: Go through your content as if you were seeing it for the first time. Follow every link and click on every button. If it doesn’t work or is difficult to use, change it. Research has found that 79% of people will revisit easy-to-use, user-friendly websites.

4. Forgetting About Testing

Something that we often forget when it comes to B2B marketing is testing our efforts. We need to make an effort to look at what we’re doing to see what works and what doesn’t and update our strategy accordingly.

The fix: Analyse the results of every campaign you run, and when in doubt, don’t be afraid to try different campaigns to see what works and what doesn’t. Split testing is a marketing practice we need to reinvest in – if you haven’t already been doing so.

5. Not Having a Call to Action (CTA)

It’s all well and good that you’re punting on your business and brand, but what is the point of the exercise? What are you trying to achieve? You need to give your customers a way forward, a way of taking things a step further.

The fix: When you start implementing your campaigns, always consider the next step. How can they contact you? How do they find out more? There has to be something more to it, and it’s up to you to determine what it is and how to go about making it happen.

6. Underestimating the Power of SEO

No matter how impressive your writing abilities are, if your content is not optimized for the web, your potential customers will not find you. Your efforts will be wasted.

The fix: Do your keyword research beforehand to see what people are searching for and build your content around the keywords identified. Businesses and individuals alike use organic Google searches to find services and products. You need to make sure that, when they’re looking for your product, you’re top of the list.

7. Not Setting and Tracking Your Goals

Everything that you do needs to have a purpose. This also means that you need to have a way of knowing what the purpose is, as well as how you are doing in terms of meeting this goal or metric. Instead of just doing things to say that you’re meeting your customer’s checklist, do something to see a remarkable difference.

The fix: Set ambitious goals for yourself, as well as the steps you will be taking to meet them. Each week, go through this list to see how you are progressing, as well as to see whether any areas require attention or improvement. This can then be used as a benchmark for future marketing efforts.

8. Assuming You Know Better

While you may be an industry leader in your field, it doesn’t mean that you suddenly know everything about your customers or potential customers. Instead, you need to do your research and get to know your audience. This will help you tailor your approach to meet their needs. You need to be relevant to your industry and on top of the latest trends and developments.

The fix: Do your research beforehand. Make sure that whatever you are planning to do is in line with what your audience is looking for.

9. Incorrect Tools

We all know that the right tools can make or break a business. Having said this, even if you invest in the latest technology, you need to have the knowledge and expertise to use it correctly. Instead of wasting your money, find out what tools you need and then look for options that match your skill set. When in doubt, look into a quick online training course to help you use our tools to their full potential.

The fix: Don’t get blinded by the headlines. Stick to what you know and only upgrade or add new tools to the mix if you know how to use them. This will save you a lot of money and spare you frustration.

10. Regular Admin and Maintenance

When it comes to marketing, you need to stay on top of all the nitty-gritty admin tasks. Regularly go through your databases to see if the lists are still relevant. Use the data obtained from ongoing marketing efforts to rethink your approach and make any necessary changes to improve your customer service.

The fix: Schedule a day at least once a month to get on top of your admin. If you need an extra hand, don’t be afraid to ask for help. At the end of the day, your records need to be up to date and your approach relevant to the world around you.

Mistakes Happen. Don’t Beat Yourself Up About It.

At the end of the day, we’re only human and despite our best efforts, mistakes can happen. What’s important is how you deal with these mistakes. Learn from what you have done, determine a way to move forward, and don’t be afraid to learn. This quick guide can help you get back on track and prepare you for a brand-new, mistake-free year.

Ghia Marnewick is a creative content writer for the New York-based digital marketing agency Aumcore, an agency that specializes in brand strategy, web development, and PPC management services. She is passionate about finding new ways of sharing information on trending topics in the digital world.