Can B2B Business Survive without Marketing?
Understanding the importance of strategic communication to support marketing in B2B Landscape
Can B2B Business Survive Without Having to Invest in strategic thinking of marketing?
I had an extensive and demanding conversation with a senior member of the top management team, aiming to persuade them about the critical significance of strategic initiatives to bolster their business. They inquired, "Is it possible for my B2B business to thrive in the long term business growth without a team dedicated to strategic thinking of marketing?"
I could just answer this question with the obvious "yes" or "no" by assessing its scope and range of desirable results, but first I tried to understand the perspective behind this question. Business leaders in B2B sectors often underestimate the impact of marketing, especially when its direct impact on the bottom line is not immediately apparent. This is driven by various factors. From years of experience in handling clients in B2B sectors, I met only a few B2B business leaders in Indonesia who show enthusiasm in building long-term brand equity and strategic partnership. It's not that they don't understand how marketing works. It's because of their historical transactions haven't been driven by extensive marketing and communication efforts. Many B2B business leaders also perceive brand visibility and emotional connection with consumers are applicable for B2C. Hence, they might assume that strengthening their position among key stakeholders and buyers become irrelevant given the intricate decision-making process in B2B.
Recognizing the changes in how decisions are made in B2B is crucial for creating effective strategies. Research from DemandGen Reportshows that more than 50% of companies involve four or more individuals in the purchase decision-making process, and 21% include seven or more stakeholders.
The identified need for a more comprehensive and collaborative approach also holds significant implication for both marketing and sales. While marketing team need to have a more comprehensive and collaborative approach resonates to multiple stakeholders, the sales team must adopt strategies that go beyond individual transactions and focus on building relationships with multiple stakeholders involved in the decision-making process.
With the increase use of digital technology, the B2B marketing landscape is undergoing a transformation. According to the aforementioned report on global B2B, 75% of buyers are allocating more time to researching purchases, reflecting an evolving trend from 72% in 2018. This heightened emphasis on research underscores the increasing importance of informed decision-making, indicating that buyers are more discerning and thorough in evaluating potential solutions. An overwhelming 79% respondents emphasized the substantial impact of the business content on their ultimate buying decision. This highlights the critical role that contents plays in influencing and persuading B2B buyers. Businesses that effectively communicate their value propositions through compelling content are more likely to sway buyer perceptions positively.
While some B2B businesses may endure without dedicating significant attention to developing relevant marketing plans, winning the long term game becomes notably challenging - especially under the business ecosystem rife with uncertainty and rapid changes. Businesses that recognize and invest in comprehensive, collaborative marketing strategies are better positioned for sustained success.
Applying marketing strategy is like picking technology tools - focus on feature that improve your work, not just the advanced ones. The next challenge is figuring out a strategy to achieve optimum results within specific budget. We'll share practical strategies to develop an effective plan and measure progress toward your marketing goals, supporting your business growth. Stay tuned for straightforward insights!