Are you struggling to get the attention online that your company deserves? Is it suddenly more difficult than ever to reach the decision makers who may be interested in your products or services? With an increase in competition on all digital channels, it can be difficult for B2B technology companies to connect with decision makers on the right channels, or even at all. Whether you provide electronic medical records, clinical software, or IT solutions, your company isn’t immune to challenges like these.
So, how do you make the most of what you plan to invest in your marketing initiatives? By engaging decision makers about their needs, pain points, and goals. But how do you do that? With a sound B2B technology marketing plan, of course!
Here are 6 steps B2B technology companies can use to create a marketing plan.
1. Identify Your Target Market
How would you describe your prospective customers? What demographics do they fit into? To understand your target market, you need to be able to describe prospective customers and identify what demographics they fit into. You should be able to define their:
- Buying Geography
- Company Types
- Company Sizes
Having psychographic information about your prospective customers and a well-defined target market allows you to effectively plan your marketing campaigns and ensure that they appeal to the prospective customers you wish to target. You’ll also want to further segment your audience by variables like past and current customers, who has visited your website multiple times, and so forth. A CRM tool (at Sagefrog, we use HubSpot) can provide these types of insights for you, making it easier to do a deep dive and effectively define your target audience.
2. Create Buyer Personas
Once you have your target market in place, you’ll also want to establish buyer personas for the core members of your audience. A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. This is a vital piece of your technology marketing plan because without it, you’ll be marketing in vain to customers who most likely don’t want to purchase your products or services.
What does your ideal buyer look like? Who are the most important stakeholders involved in purchasing decisions? Do you have existing customers in these roles that you can reach out to?
Answering these questions is a great way to get started on creating your buyer personas.
3. Define the Buyer Journey
What motivates your customers to make the decision to purchase your product? If you don’t know, interviewing existing customers that most closely match your buyer personas can help you find out. To get an idea of what their journey looks like, you can ask your customers these questions:
- How did you become aware of our company/product?
- What needs or pain points did you uncover before buying our product or service?
- What goal did you fulfill by purchasing our product or service?
Being able to map out the buyer’s journey of your prospects and customers will help you create content that is focused on them, relevant to their needs and pain points, and reaches them at right time in their journey.
4. Set SMART Marketing Goals
What are your B2B tech marketing goals? If you’ve only set vague goals up to this point, you need to start setting smart ones. Your goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and most importantly, timely. You can set goals to generate more revenue for your company, or create goals for your brand, such as increasing overall brand awareness, or ranking in a Google Featured Snippet for one of your target keywords.
You’ll need to establish key performance indicators (KPIs) as well. Without them, it will be a lot more difficult to determine when you’ve achieved your goals. Example KPIs could include:
- The source of your website traffic (SEO, PPC, email marketing, social media, blogs, other)
- How many unique visitors have been to your website
- Your lead-to-customer conversion rate
5. Determine Your Marketing Budget
How much money do you want to spend on your marketing activities overall? How much do you want to spend in each area? You can’t create an efficient marketing budget without first having your marketing goals, strategy, and focus aligned, so it’s vital to have these items finalized before even thinking about putting your budget together.
You’ll need to:
- Set your marketing budget
- Define where you want to spend your budget
- Prioritize which areas are the most important
- Determine which activities provide the best return on investment (ROI)
- Spend your marketing budget accordingly
Check out our blog post 6 Successful Tips for Marketing Budget & Reporting for more tips on establishing a marketing budget.
6. Outline Your Marketing Strategy and Tactics
You know your target market and have developed buyer personas. You’ve done the research and interviewed your customers to map out their journeys. You’ve set smart marketing goals. Now, it’s time to get to work on creating your marketing strategy for technology products and start deciding which tactics you’ll employ to see your strategy through.
What channels will you use to reach our target audience? How will you reach buyers at each stage in their journey? What do you need to do to reach your goals? To ensure your company’s success, it’s important to take an integrated approach to your marketing endeavors.
Put Your Technology Marketing Plan in Place
It’s clear that how B2B tech companies should approach marketing is ever-evolving, just like many other industries. As such, it’s vital to leverage tactics that have a solid ROI and will lead to real results if you want to be successful.
If you need assistance developing any facet of your B2B marketing plan, from your buyer personas to your goals and budget, download our helpful Checklist: Marketing Campaign Planning & Execution or contact us today.