Thinking of pursuing a career in B2B marketing? Terrific! Rest assured this is one of the best decisions you have made so far. Undoubtedly, the B2B marketing industry has grown tremendously in the last decade. As a matter of fact, the B2B industry is expected to reach over $6.6 trillion this year, surpassing the global B2C industry. Where would you rather be?!
That said, I will like to quickly add that starting a B2B marketing career is everything but easy. Do not panic, though. Our digital age offers you uninterrupted access to a ton of B2B marketing tools and growth hacking tricks to help expedite your marketing career.
Over the years, I have had recurring questions on B2B marketing, especially how to excel in the field. So, I took the time to compile this foolproof guide to help young marketers like you kick start your B2B marketing career without any fear. Trust me, it is not rocket science. You just need to be armed with the right knowledge and hacks.
In this article, we will quickly explore the basics of B2B marketing, the requisite skills, and some pro tips to help you excel as a B2B marketer.
What is B2B Marketing?
Simply put, business to business (B2B) marketing is a type of marketing strategy targeted at other businesses or organizations. Unlike business to customer (B2C) marketing, this type of marketing is focused on promoting a company’s product to other businesses. Typically, this comes in the form of ‘raw materials’, services, and software that other businesses can use for proper functioning.
A good example is companies which produce computers. Besides selling to individuals, these companies lookout for businesses that need these computers for day-to-day functioning.
Approaching such businesses with the aim of supplying them with computers is what we call B2B marketing.
Although it is grossly confused for B2C marketing, B2B sales take a whole different trajectory to success. The differences between B2B and B2C marketing can be clearly seen in the volume of sales, length of the pipeline, type of goods sold, and marketing technique.
4 Reasons You Should Choose a B2B Marketing Career Path
Despite being lucrative, only a handful are happy to tread the B2B marketing career path. Of course, the pathway to success is littered with its fair share of challenges but what isn’t? Instead of dwelling on the reasons you should look away, here are 4 astounding reasons to choose a B2B marketing career path. Check them out!
1. More Professionals Are Needed
While the B2B marketing industry has been around for decades and is littered with thousands of marketers, it is sad to state that only a few of these so-called marketers truly know their onion in the industry.
A huge chunk of B2B marketers today are either those forced to play the role or B2C marketers just testing the waters. No wonder, many B2B marketers are constantly complaining of trying so hard yet attracting little or no success.
The B2B industry has morphed into a brand of its own. Therefore, it takes a professional with classical marketing training to navigate his/her way through these challenges. Forget about the multitude of noisemakers, the industry needs a pro like you.
2. More Demand, Less Supply
You would be amazed to know that there are some B2B companies with no professional B2B marketer. No kidding! True, the secretary is saddled with the responsibility of running a few emails and cold calling but is that all that there is to B2B marketing.
Fortunately, B2B companies are learning the enormous perks of having a professional B2B marketer on the field. They are beginning to learn that it is not enough to have a guy running some trial and error campaigns.
The awakening has begun and the demand for highly trained marketers is on the rise, creating a huge space only a few can occupy. What better time to get into this gold mine?! With the right skills, you can get your first promotion in no-time!
3. A Chance to Make a Difference
One of the many reasons I fell in love with B2B marketing is the opportunity to make a difference. There are many companies with no existing marketing strategy or a faulty one. As a professional B2B marketer, you can totally change the path of the company without going under the knives.
You have the opportunity to create a working marketing strategy from the ground up and take the company from zero to zenith in no time. Just what any company needs today to stay above the waters.
4. Creativity at Its Peak
Unlike most professions that have laid down rules and working patterns, a B2B marketing career offers you a clean slate to work on and a wide field to continuously grow your creativity. It is never a dull moment here! You get a chance to keep adding to your knowledge base as the nature of jobs you handle keeps changing. You are the ‘out of the box’ specialist.
Kick-Starting a Career in B2B Marketing - Here are the Skills You Need
Succeeding in the B2B marketing industry is easier than you think. A recurring problem is that young marketers dive head-on without gearing up for the challenges ahead. This is why they do not get it right the first time.
As you embark on this exhilarating journey, be sure to arm yourself with useful marketing skills such as;
Welcome to the big data age! Any skilled marketer must know how to properly handle data. Thanks to technology, you can leverage analytical tools such as customer relationship management (CRM), Google Analytics, reporting tools, marketing automation, and many more. Notwithstanding, you do need basic analytical skills to use any of these skills. Start learning!
Sound Communication Skills
Sound communication skills are an indispensable marketing skill. In fact, you cannot be a seasoned marketer without this skill.
Because your job description involves continuously communicating your product and services to clients. You cannot do this effectively without sound communication skills. You also get to communicate with your team members and, of course, your boss. All of these require effective communication to succeed. A good marketer is a seasoned communicator.
Demand Generation Skills
B2B demand generation, although rather new, has found its place among the prerequisite skills of becoming a marketer. Companies are on the lookout for not just any marketer but those that can safely lead prospects from the first touch to the customer base. Lead generation is the essence of every marketing strategy and demand generation creates a safe passage for these leads to roll in. To enjoy a competitive edge out there, you need to be good at implementing demand generation strategy.
Strategy and Planning Skills
This is yet another critical skill seasoned marketers should add to their skill set. Your job as a B2B marketer requires you to make foolproof plans and come up with effective marketing strategies from time to time. There is no cutting corner here.
If you love research then you are on the right track. Marketing roles involve a boatload of research - both on audience and competitor. So, gear up!
4 Expert Tips to Skyrocket Your B2B Marketing Career
1. Understand Your Team and the Industry
Having spent over 5 years in the industry, I can say unabashedly that your journey begins when you finally understand the industry. Like most marketers out there, I didn’t get it right the first time too. I wish I knew everything I know now earlier in my journey. Lucky for you, I am here to guide you through a different route.
To kick start a career in B2B marketing, I advise you to take the time to fully grasp what the industry is about.
Secondly, you have to extend the same measure to your team. You can’t fit in until you know your team. Don’t even try to do it alone because you won’t go far alone. Learn to be a team player. Take your time to know your team and carve a niche for yourself.
2. Don’t Shy Away from Social Media
Social media is a liquid gold mine for marketers. Housing millions of people across the globe, you won’t be wrong if you described social media as the largest customer pool on the planet.
Trust me, leveraging social media is just as daunting as the facts are exciting. It is almost like there is no right passage in. oh, well, that is not true. Social media is a vital part of any marketing strategy today.
We have grown past the days of cold calling and spammy emails. If you are looking to stand out from your competitors, then you must learn to leverage social media for your marketing spree.
3. Build a Connection with Your Clients
The story has changed. Today, buyers are in control of the market. They no longer sit around, waiting to be sold to. They want to know who you are and why they should patronize you. No wonder the sales funnel it taking more time nowadays.
Notwithstanding, you can totally navigate your way to the heart of the buyers by building a connection. No one wants to work with a bot. Your audience should know who you are and why they should trust you. Help your brand stand out from the crowd by showing your audience that you understand their needs and have the solution. People follow who they trust. Do your clients’ trust you?
4. Spend More Time on Clients’ Needs
To excel as a marketer, your focus should be primarily on what your audience needs, not what the company can achieve. It is your duty to relate customers’ needs to the company and find a means of satisfying this need. This is an in-house secret most marketers are yet to learn. To stand out, always remember to be a problem solver.
A long read, right? Well, I am sure it was worth it.
Your B2B marketing career is just as good as the hacks and skills you employ. With this comprehensive guide detailing what B2B Marketing is, the required skills, and expert tips to succeed in the field, I am positive you can fully jump into B2B marketing career path without any fear.
Give these tricks a try and let us know how well it turned out. Rest assured Markletic is always here to help you skyrocket your B2B marketing growth. Do not forget to ask your questions in the comment section below.