Influencer marketing may have the image of “a marketing method that allows BtoC companies to reach consumers through platforms such as Instagram,” but in fact BtoB companies should be engaged in influencer marketing.
Since the sales amount per BtoB company is higher than that of the BtoC company, the opinions and reviews of third parties have a great influence on the choice of trading partners.
Some data show that 19% of the overall US economy, including BtoB and BtoC, is affected by reviews, and 91% of all BtoB transactions are more or less affected by reviews. In other words, BtoB products and services that have no opportunity for prospective customers to get brochures like consumer products are business opportunities that leverage recommendations from third parties such as word-of-mouth and influencer marketing. It is necessary to expand.
In recent years, the BtoB market has become increasingly competitive. Corporate marketers need to think about all the ways to get prospects to know their company and win business.
“Media” is a place to appeal to the prospective company, but today “media” is mainly e-mail, social media, and websites. Companies use these media to communicate the benefits of goods and services to their customers, but unfortunately prospects don’t take the selling points they convey.
Therefore, the third party’s opinion is important. If the information sent by a company is supported by a trusted third party such as an influencer, the reader is more likely to trust the information.
This article explains five reasons why BtoB companies should tie up with influencers.
BtoB is also a “people-to-people” business
In theory, there is a clear difference between BtoB and BtoC. Both businesses are categorized as BtoB if the company provides goods and services and the recipient is the company, and BtoC if the consumer.
However, there are problems with this theory. “Business” may be a “legally recognized organization”, but “business” itself does not make decisions. It ’s the same “human” that makes decisions, such as buying something in a business or choosing a business partner.
As a result, people who make business purchase decisions are also influenced by the same factors that affect personal shopping decisions that are unrelated to their work.
Certainly, buyers from BtoB companies use their networks and do more research than personal shopping. And multiple people are involved in making business purchase decisions. However, as a result, it can be said that personal shopping and business purchases are the same kind of “shopping”.
There is a difference between buying a product or service as a “consumer” or as a “representative of a company”, but when making a purchase decision, Whether or not there is trust is important. Companies promote products and services, but how much do prospects trust?
Consumers trust professional opinions rather than corporate advertising. For BtoB products and services, you can tie up with trusted influencers and promote your products to deliver content that is much more credible than your company’s own appeal.
Just like BtoC, a BtoB company with a “people-to-people” business and few contacts with prospects should be engaged in influencer marketing.
The prospect is looking for content that is relevant to them
Influencers are “content creators”. In addition to posting content on social media, BtoB company marketers can use influencers such as writers, Instagrammers, and YouTubers who create content for the company.
Influencers know their followers well, so they understand what content they send out most effectively. People who interact with the content on the Internet are looking for content that is relevant to them and follow influencers on social media that entertain themselves.
Think about when you search for something on the Internet. If you’re just looking for entertainment, you’re free to see what you see, but if you’re looking to make a BtoB purchase, you’ll research products and services right away without a detour.
The important point is that prospects want content that is relevant to them. Corporate executives check blogs, emails, social media, and other posts from their key business influencers. That’s because they are purely interested in influencer opinions and there may be new ideas to improve the business.
If a prospective business influencer praises a particular product, many followers will want to know more about that product. If a prospect knows about a company ’s products and services through a trusted influencer and the content posted by the influencer is compelling, then the prospect is more likely to purchase the purchase funnel ( The possibility of proceeding to the next stage of the development of the AIDMA model is increased.
You can expand your business opportunities by sending content that interests your potential customers.
BtoB companies are doing more research than I imagined
BtoB and BtoC have surprisingly many similarities, but there is one major difference. Because BtoB buyers are responsible for purchasing goods using company money, they tend to do more research before buying than BtoC customers.
BtoB products and services are more expensive than those for consumers, and BtoB buyers (or their bosses) are responsible if they fail to purchase products or services without much research It can be a problem.
Demand Gen, a US marketing company, surveyed 150 BtoB buyers in 2014 over the last 12 months of purchasing behavior. As a result, about two-thirds of buyers evaluated The number of sources used to do this has increased compared to before. “
We can see that many buyers find value in investing in researching the pros and cons of every product before making a final purchase decision.
In the same survey, 72% of respondents use social media to solve purchase issues, and 57% directly connect with potential prospects who can solve problems on social media. And 54% of respondents visit company websites after finding positive reviews.
Using influencer content to reach a wider market and having a presence on social media will lead to profits. It is also very important to have an attractive and easy-to-use website with a compelling sales copy.
Unfortunately, reaching BtoB buyers is not easy. The most effective way is to leverage the influence of a trusted third-party opinion called an influencer.
The Nielsen Catalina Solutions survey shows that the ROI of content produced and shared by influencers is 11 times that of regular advertising in 12 months.
In addition, according to a survey by US influencer marketing company Linqia, 92% of marketers who used influencer content in 2017 said that influencer marketing is an effective way to reach their audience. .
Strengthen the benefits of inbound marketing
The typical marketing method so far has been “outbound marketing” where a seller approaches a large number of unspecified potential customers.
Over the years, companies have advertised on multiple media and sent out the message “Our products are great, so please buy!” Many TV commercials have had similar promotions. Also, companies doing outbound marketing sometimes have to create the market itself. It is very difficult to create a market with products whose names are not known at all.
Recently, “inbound marketing” is becoming commonplace, where you can publish content such as blogs and videos on the web and have them find you.
According to US market research firm eMarketer, about 86% of marketers tie up with influencers in 2016 as part of their inbound marketing strategy, and many marketers have invested in influencers as originally planned. I understood that I was going to double.
People’s purchasing behavior is changing. Consumers want a more personal and reliable buying experience. Consumers don’t like being prompted to purchase certain items. I would like to make a relationship with the brand myself and decide whether it is worth buying the product.
Influencer marketing is a very effective marketing method for enhancing the benefits of inbound marketing. Influencer marketing can be effective even in the BtoB market where it is difficult to reach potential customers.
Encourage prospects to notice the existence of the company
BtoB companies first do their research carefully when considering the purchase of goods and services.
If the product or service offered by the company is already widely known, it may be named as a potential buyer, but if not, the prospect will even know that the company exists. You may not know. Searching for websites will hit many products and services. Among them, there must be many things that were not found by prior research.
In the modern social media society, the “domino effect” until products and services become famous is increasingly triggered by word-of-mouth communication such as “like” and spread on social media.
Distribute attractive and valuable content on social media that will be noticed by business buyers. First of all, it does not start unless the potential customers know the existence of the company. Prospective customers interested in a company’s products and services from the entrance of influencers will visit the company’s website with a positive image.
So how do you get prospects to see your content? The best way is to build strong relationships with the most influential influencers in the field and promote your products and services.
There are five reasons why a BtoB company should tie up with an influencer:
- BtoB is also a “people-to-people” business 2. Prospects are looking for content that is relevant to them 3. BtoB companies are doing more research than they can imagine 4. Advantages of inbound marketing 5. Encourage prospects to notice the presence of the company
There may be an opinion that “BtoB marketing does not have a direct relationship with consumers,” but this is not the case. Business is done by people, and people working in BtoB companies are also willing consumers. “Business” itself cannot make decisions.
Influencers who connect people can provide the “trust” that “business” lacks. BtoB companies can use influencer marketing and expand business opportunities to connect with prospective buyers