Online marketing and digital marketing are commonly used interchangeably, yet they are not one and the same. So what’s the big difference between the two, especially when it comes to B2B online marketing vs digital marketing? Let’s dig into it and identify the thin line between these strategies and how to leverage both for your B2B brand.
What is B2B Digital Marketing?
When it comes to audience reach for B2B businesses, digital marketing is lightyears ahead of traditional marketing methods, such as billboards or newspaper ads.
In simple terms, B2B digital marketing uses electronic devices to spread the word about a product or service but is not solely internet-based. Digital marketing channels can include, but are not limited to:
- Search engines like Google and Bing
- Social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook
- Phone apps
When you clearly understand your potential customers you can focus on the proper electronic channels to connect with them and drive purchase decisions. It is essential to create at least one or more buyer personas to uncover your target audience’s likes and dislikes, pain points, where they hang out both virtually and in-person, and their overall demographics.
For example, a building supplies manufacturer will probably record better marketing success on LinkedIn rather than podcast advertisements. This is because they can connect with their target audience with direct communication and publish informative digital content like infographics that help to educate both their followers, and their followers’ connections.
Most important to remember is that there is no one tried and true method for digital marketing success. Encourage your marketing team to be open to trying new things and continually reinvent the wheel—you’ll never know what marketing formula may land the next white whale.
What is B2B Online Marketing?
Online marketing is a subset of digital marketing dependent solely on internet-based channels. Like the universe, the possibilities of the internet are endless—for example, in January 2021 alone, there were more than 4.6 billion active internet users. With this in mind, it is easy to see why B2B companies must leverage online marketing to reach other businesses and scale customer acquisition and retention.
Unfortunately, business-to-business online marketing isn’t a walk in the park; you need to implement strategic marketing tactics to overcome challenges that come with web-based marketing channels.
With the internet ever-changing, it can be hard to keep up with new B2B marketing trends and expectations; however, this can make it all the more exciting.
For instance, let’s look at search engine optimization (SEO). Ongoing algorithm updates have changed the way content appears on Google search over the years. This means to record stellar online marketing success, B2B companies must ensure their websites are up to date and meet the standards of Google and other search engines.
Naturally, your next question may be, “So, what popular channels are online B2B marketers taking advantage of?” Frankly, they are a lot of them, but common examples include:
- Online Webinars
- Social Media Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Content Marketing
- PPC Campaigns
Again, there are no universal truths to the amount of success of each channel; it all depends on how you use them and your audience. When you know your target audience, you can develop a specialized content strategy just for them. This will allow you to provide prospects with tailored types of content via the channel(s) they frequent the most.
Benefits of B2B Digital and Online Marketing
Clever B2B marketers will be on the lookout for opportunities that combine both digital and online marketing efforts for the best ROI. This could mean repurposing marketing assets across various channels or using one channel to drive traffic to another. For example, you could reallocate pieces of a blog post into tweets to make a statement, or use blog excerpts in email marketing to drive traffic back to that article or your social media platforms.
So, why is using multiple channels the way to go for your digital marketing plan? To answer this question, let’s look at four key benefits of leveraging B2B digital and online marketing services for your business.
Better Brand Awareness for Your B2B Company
Brand awareness is the social currency of every business to create quality lead generation, and it’s no different in the B2B space.
However, here’s the thing: If your target audience has no idea about your business and the services you offer, then there’s no way for them to know whether to buy from your brand or refer you to others. Even if your business has been around for a couple of years, you still need to stay top of mind for your target audience—there’s no way to pull this off without marketing.
The right digital and online marketing strategy will help you capture the hearts of prospective and existing customers using compelling messaging.
Increased Business Opportunities
Digital and online marketing are sure-fire ways to grow your business and attract new opportunities. By promoting your business on the appropriate channels, you’ll be able to get your services in front of those who need them, whether that is for immediate purchase or sometime in the future.
For example, many companies will use a B2B digital marketing strategy focusing on specific channels ideal for lead generation. The company will then nurture those leads, so further down the line, the leads are converted into loyal repeat buyers.
Lower Advertising Costs Compared to Traditional Marketing
If you don’t have top-dollar to invest in traditional marketing, opting for digital marketing is the way to go. You’ll save more money, reach a high volume of people, and get real-time data on the results of your marketing efforts.
Many times, digital marketing is the fastest way to scale a new business and generate revenue which can be invested in traditional marketing if the need arises. When you invest in a well-researched B2B digital marketing strategy, the sky’s the limit on the returns your business can realize.
Ability to Gather Insightful Data
Data analysis is one of online marketing’s radiant gifts. Many digital channels provide insights into your marketing efforts regarding reach, engagement, and overall performance.
For example, Google Analytics is a great free marketing tool that allows you to track the performance of your B2B website and landing pages.
With this, you’ll know when you double down on aspects of a marketing campaign or where to pull money out of if the efforts aren’t boosting your bottom line.
A key takeaway to remember is that your prospects are people too. So, apply what you know about your favorite customers into your marketing strategy …
The success of your marketing efforts depends on how well your online and digital marketing tactics add value at the various stages of the buyer’s journey.
A key takeaway to remember is that your prospects are people too. So, apply what you know about your favorite customers into your marketing strategy and attract more people/companies like the ones you already adore.
A professional B2B marketing agency knows how to combine online and digital marketing strategies to set you light years ahead of your competitors. HyFyve is your experienced guide for B2B marketing. Schedule a free consultation today, and we’ll bring you to the next level.