A B2B buyer’s journey is entirely different from B2C buyers. The B2C industry is driven by emotions and instinctive decisions, whereas the B2B industry is driven by rationality and practicality. But there is one thing that is common for both, online presence.
For example, you are looking for a good interior designing company to create an amazing workplace. You searched online for the top interior designing company in your area. You find an interior designing company with published images of prior work, positive reviews and recommendations, good ratings, and all the necessary details. You also check the company’s social media account. You are highly likely to consider this interior designing company for designing your workplace.
What this interior designer company did was create a strong online presence that helps it grow their business. You can do something for your organization.
An online presence is all about how easily your brand can be found online. It includes creating a website, Google My Business listing, social media accounts, running PPC ads, SEO campaigns, content marketing, PR campaigns, etc. Of course, once you have created an active online presence, you also need to manage it because it will directly link to your business reputation. Still, it is worth investing in this B2B marketing strategy.
Here are a few statistics that validate the importance of online presence:
- Over 80% of buyers visit a website before making a purchase
- 75% of B2B buyersand 84% of C-Suite executives use social media when making a purchase
- 74% of business buyers will spend over half of their total research timeonline
- 95%of B2B marketers utilize social media content in some form, making it the most widely-used content type
- According to Adaptive Marketing, 97% of consumers use the internet to find a business.
How Can You Create an Effective Online Presence for Your B2B business?
Online presence and marketing efforts go hand in hand. However, the marketing strategies geared towards creating an online presence are different from those used to advertise the products or services. Here are the 10 steps to create an effective online presence for your B2B business from scratch.
1. Create a Website
Creating a website is the first step for any B2B business to build an active online presence. Without an active website, a business cannot exist online.
More than 71% of small businesses had websites in 2021. Creating an effective website for your business increases your professional credibility through brand recognition, but it is also a huge boost to your digital marketing strategies.
It is very important to pay attention while creating a website for your business. 75% of consumers admit to making judgments on a company’s credibility based on the website design. There are plenty of elements involved in creating and maintaining a successful website, from content creation to adaptability of the website, and security considerations.
2. Be Active on Social Media
There are more than 3 billion social media users. Undoubtedly, most of the users are consumers, not businesses, but the statistics prove that businesses are gradually shifting to social media. B2B marketers report that 80% of their social media leads come from LinkedIn, and 40% say LinkedIn is the most effective channel for driving leads. Additionally, 71% of the B2B businesses plan on investing in influencer marketing in 2022.
Create social media accounts for your business on various platforms, including LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram. Almost every social media platform has a separate option to create a business account. Creating a business account gives you access to advertising and tracking features. Focus on creating a complete business profile, add a description of your business, post the company logo, and connect with employees working in your company.
You can use the LinkedIn Campaign Planning business playbook to create an effective LinkedIn marketing plan.
3. Utilize Google My Business Listing
Google My Business listing is the most preferred tool for small businesses to enhance their online presence. First, create a Google My Business listing. It is a snapshot of your business that shows your business photos, contact details, map, website, and a whole range of other information.
A recent Google report found that 60% of smartphone users contacted businesses directly through the GMB interface using the “click to call” option.
It is very important to understand that your clients can add reviews to your GMB listing that you cannot remove. This is both positive and negative, but it eventually helps you build credibility.
4. Produce High-Quality Content
Quality content is at the heart of creating an online presence. The content used in the B2B industry for marketing promotions and creating an online presence is different from the B2C industry. The B2B content focuses on testimonials, case studies, white papers, webinars, podcasts, etc.
Produce high-quality content that generates value for the B2B users and represents a consistent brand tone. You can use the Company Expert’s B2B Positioning and Messaging playbook to help you create high-value content for your ideal target audience.
5. Invest in SEO
The majority of B2B businesses out there have a business website, Google My Business listing, and accounts on social media platforms. However, to stand out from others and build an active online presence, a business needs to invest in various marketing strategies
SEO is often the first tool for most B2B businesses to enhance their online presence. SEO stands for search engine optimization. It helps the users find your business when they use related search queries to find your business. 61% of marketers consider SEO efforts and boosting organic presence their top inbound marketing priority.
6. Run Google Advertising Campaigns
Google advertising or Google Ads is another tool used by B2B marketers to build an effective online presence. Google Ads are the paid advertising campaign where you can run ads for your business. More than 80% of global businesses trust Google Ads for PPC campaigns. You can use Google Ads to create immediate brand awareness for your business to build its online presence. There are five types of ads that you can use to enhance your online presence significantly:
- Search ads
- Display ads
- Shopping ads
- Video ads
- App ads
7. Make use of Public Relations
Public relations are seen as the most promising tool by B2B businesses to build their online presence. Most successful online B2B businesses use public relations strategies and marketing to expand their business online. It includes press releases in the top media publications and social media campaigns using unbiased mentions to build a credible and trustworthy online brand image.
For example, a mention of your B2B business in a top business magazine like Forbes would greatly boost your B2B business online presence. Thus, use public relations to build a strong online presence for your business.
8. Build an Email List
Email listing is one of the top ways for B2B businesses to build an online presence. The purpose of the email list is to engage with current and potential client’s daily, weekly, or monthly. It helps you collect leads and educate the existing clients on new product or service offerings.
83% of B2B companies use email newsletters as part of their content marketing program, and 40% of B2B marketers say these newsletters are critical to their content marketing success.
9. Invest in Online Reputation Management
Creating an effective online reputation comes with the additional responsibility of managing it. The process of online reputation management includes monitoring all the online points of interaction of your business. It addresses any negative comments about your business or negative reviews immediately. It is more of a passive approach as ORM experts focus only on responding to the negative actions against your business that can harm your brand image. It helps to portray your business in the best possible light.
10. Automate Your Process
Building an active online presence is a continuous process. It is not enough to just create a website or social media account. To be seen by people, you need to regularly invest in the marketing strategies that make your business visible. You can automate most repetitive tasks using automated B2B marketing tools.
For example, sending emails to track online reputation, scheduling the content, and other tedious tasks can be automated easily to improve the efficiency of the marketing teams.
Partner with Company Expert
Company Expert is a leading B2B growth consultant for professional services firms. We provide B2B firms with proprietary suites of solutions and technology designed to inject speed, knowledge, and accelerated growth. B2B Financial Services, Technology, and Professional Service Firms can work with our B2B consultants to grow their business.