5 Best Practices To Create A B2B Communication Strategy.
What does it take to be successful in your communication with other businesses, educated buyers, industry professionals and corporate stakeholders? Having a B2B communication strategy is the difference between broadcasting a string of aleatory words to knowing exactly what to say, where and to whom. To help you become successful in your business communications, we don’t mind sharing our five best practices for a B2B comms strategy:
1. Objectives – align your communication strategy with your business objectives
Your comms strategy needs to be anchored to the company’s objectives with consistent messaging and relevant content. What do you want to say and how does it align with your mission statement or feed into to your sales and marketing plans? Your objectives should lead your communications content. Ask yourself if your objective is to increase sales, position the company in a specific way, achieve visibility in the media, develop thought leadership or something else entirely.
2. Audience – think audience first in everything you do
We cannot stress this enough: audience focus is paramount. Make sure you understand your audience and their preferences for communication channels and formats. Being where your corporate audience and stakeholders are determines your channel map. Segment your audience as all your content needs to be fit-for-purpose and adapted to both audience needs and communication channels.
3. Message – bespoke content is the way to success
For B2B content you must focus on your expertise in relation to your product, service and the industry. Developing bespoke content to an astute audience is hard work, but absolutely worthwhile in B2B communication. You don’t want to waste anyone’s time with generic press releases or irrelevant noise. To be successful, you need to have in-depth knowledge of your corporate audience segments, the areas of expertise of yourself and your spokespeople, the industry, as well as current trends and issues that impact both your target audience and target media.
4. Thought leadership – the future is for though leaders, not followers
These days, CEO’s and business leaders, as head honchos of their company, need to own and tell their story, whether in print, online or in person. The public, followers and peers within the industry expect to see and want to hear from the CEO. Thought leadership content is based on knowledge and credibility, offering expertise and value to the audience. To gain traction and truly engage with your audience, you need to give them something progressive or pertinent to talk about. Thought leadership comes in many forms, and your B2B content should be aligned with your expertise, experience and business objectives. If done well, thought leadership helps build, manage and protect the reputation of your business
5. Measure – Evaluate your success
Determine what success looks like and what metrics you need to use to measure the success of your B2B comms strategy. There are varied methods, depending on your content and channels but most importantly your objectives. Here are some suggestions for analytics:
· Percentage of coverage achieved in target B2B media
· Share of voice in the media compared to key competitors
· Key message penetration and tone of voice analysis
· Website statistics and social media metrics: followers, likes, shares and engagement
· Google analytics: unique visitors, page views, time spent, referrals, leads and click-throughs
If you have any questions or need help with your B2B communication strategy, feel free to contact In2 Consulting at www.in2consulting.com
By Cristina Kristensen, Senior Communications Consultant