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B2B Digital Marketing for SaaS

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Digital marketing team doing the same thing over and over again

Changing Digital Marketing for B2B SaaS to Achieve ARR Success

There are many activities undertaken within a digital marketing department, way too many to talk about here.  What I am going to do is explain how digital marketing needs to be adapted in terms of connecting, engaging, and attracting new business when operating in conjunction with The salesXchange New Business System.

Digital Selling is the activity undertaken by salespeople who host and communicate the business offering via podcasts, video, live streams and face-to-face, either online or in person.

The driver for the business is to do everything at scale and to not be hung-up on KPIs based upon clicks from forms being filled.  The collaborative objective is to connect and enthuse as many prospects as possible to watch, read or listen to a broadcast programme.

Contents

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Misleading Digital Marketing for B2B by Big Tech - Mar Tech
  3. Now it’s Called the Dark Funnel
  4. Align Marketing with Digital Selling
  5. The Engagement Strategy
  6. The Digital Marketing Conclusion

1. Executive Summary

The rapidly changing digital landscape has significantly impacted the way businesses approach sales and marketing. This document outlines the crucial shift towards digital selling and related marketing strategies, emphasising the importance of engagement, automation, and live streaming to capture a wider audience and stay ahead of the competition.

Traditional sales and marketing models have become obsolete as consumers demand seamless, personalised experiences. As a result, businesses must adapt and embrace digital selling practices to increase profitability and sustainability. To achieve this, a multi-faceted engagement strategy, coupled with automated social posting and live streaming, is key.

The Engagement Strategy aims to deliver a tailored, seamless experience for customers while ensuring maximum visibility for your brand. It requires businesses to create and distribute approximately 120 messages or adverts to their target audience, leveraging automation tools like Social 444 to maintain a consistent presence.

Live streaming allows businesses to engage with their entire Total Addressable Market (TAM) simultaneously, offering a cost-effective way to reach a larger audience. By creating anticipation through email campaigns and social media, you can draw attention to your live show, making it an appealing event for potential customers.

To ensure the success of your digital marketing efforts, it's essential to monitor and manage your online presence through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM). Employing tools like Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager helps analyse and optimise your digital strategy.

Finally, the transition to digital marketing requires businesses to develop new skills in audio and video production. As a result, companies must invest in training and resources to become self-sufficient in creating and distributing podcasts, videos, and live stream content.

In conclusion, adopting a digital selling and marketing strategy is vital for businesses to thrive in the modern marketplace. By implementing engagement strategies, automated social posting, live streaming, and monitoring your digital presence, you can stay ahead of the competition and build a more profitable and sustainable organisation.  Click the image below to watch the first of our Digital Selling Series.

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2. Misleading Digital Marketing for B2B by Big Tech - Mar Tech

Sales and marketing business units ceased working effectively when most companies relinquished creative selling and prospecting to marketing automation.  In addition, prospects do not want to be pestered and harassed from incessant emails to persistent cold calls from business development representatives (BDRs). 

Prospects have, and always will move at their own pace, and have purchased new products or services that they believe will increase their ROI and profitability. 

Since 2010, Marketing automation was thought to be cheaper and more effective than telesales. Yet according to Gartner 83% of B2B organisations will complete their research before engaging with a salesperson. Direct sales experience confirms, no BDR or salesman will ever make a business owner buy something they don’t want!

In light of this, the technology companies have foistered an abundance of technology on businesses via the respective marketing departments.  It would be rare to have a salesperson plead with a CEO to buy more marketing SaaS, however, this is exectly what has happened over the past twenty years by marketers.  The Big Tech, MarTech organisations have repeatedly told B2B's that their technology will help generate more business.  It didn't and it doesn't because B2B's buy differently to that of B2C. 

You're selling software and they're selling jeans and trainers, or banking or insurance.  It doesn't matter, whatever you buy, you're buying out of company funds for an item that will help generate more income.  If you're a consumer you're buying to look good in a new pair of jeans and therefore the buying psychology is totally different.  That's why 80-90% of browsers will click away from a landing page requiring contact details to access content.  

3. Now it’s Called the Dark Funnel

Businesses do not select a product and supplier in a linear fashion.  Product offerings and suppliers are viewed as a whole, compared, and selected after presenting various options to a business owner or committee/board. According to Inc.com, as long ago as 2017, a Forrester report stated that less than 1% of prospects who made it through the Mar-Tech created funnel, became revenue generating customers.

Your business success completely depends on new people reading, watching, and listening to content about you and your products.  Forcing a prospect to fill out an email form before they can 'connect' with you is commercial suicide as it makes you and your content invisible to search engines.

We recognise and understand why so many businesses experience such poor performance with their marketing and at such a high cost to the company with little return.  

Digital Marketing Dark Funnel

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4. Align Digital Marketing with Digital Selling

There are six main activities when aligning Digital Marketing with Digital Selling: -

  1. Giving prospects and customers what they want
  2. Grouping Content That Makes Sense
  3. Knowing what your business needs to do to deliver
  4. What's in it for you financially
  5. Using LinkedIn as a Second website
  6. Monitoring Everything

Giving Prospects Content They Want

Demonstrate to prospects online, the most effective self-serve infrastructure that will add value to their businesses.  To achieve this, you must provide: -

FAQs: Linked to relevant content.

Online Chat: Manned by professionals, not low cost poorly trained staff call centre staff.

Written Content: Thought leadership, Whitepapers, Business Cases, and all primary, secondary, product, how to buy, and general content.  Click here to review our Copywriting Page

Video: Thought leadership, products demos, interviews and all primary, secondary, product, how to buy, and general content. Click here to learn about B2B Video Marketing Strategies

Live streaming: For prospects and customers, enabling anonymous engagement. Visit the page Business Live Streaming.  

Podcasts: Thought leadership and interviews. Learn about Podcasting here.

How to buy: Pricing, calculators, order forms and account creation. Link to our How to Buy Page - Example

Contact: Quick and direct telephone contact and a manual, human interface option wherever and whenever it is needed.

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Grouping Content that Makes Sense

Redefine your content, moving away from marketing automation, ABM and persona related strategies and create content that reflects the importance of the type of content buyers are looking for.  We categorise them as follows: -

Primary Content

  • Thought Leadership
  • Business Case
  • Whitepapers
  • Professional Publications

Secondary Content

  • Social Proof
  • Case Studies
  • Infographics
  • Podcast/Video/Live

General

  • Blogs, New Hires
  • CSR, Awards, PR
  • Guest Activities

Create content that presents and demonstrates your products and services enabling prospects to place an order for your products or services online, without human intervention.

Product Content

  • How it works
  • How to install it
  • Best Practices
  • Training
  • FAQs

Services

  • Who you are
  • What you do
  • How you can help
  • Your working practices
  • Anything that will assure a prospect
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What Digital Selling Will Deliver

Your organisation is not clairvoyant!  It cannot know how prospects want to consume content.  Therefore, as mentioned on the Digital Selling page, your salespeople will be the hosts and front-people for the business delivering the following content: -

  • Written
  • Video
  • Podcast
  • Live stream

All content must be available on demand without tricking browsers into giving you their email addresses. Follow our format for content creation to achieve high search engine page results (SERPs).  This template has worked for us and ensures indexability with Google, visit the copywriting page here.

Watch our live stream series to see how we have approached this subject and to give you a different view on going all-in on digital selling, with the support of digital marketing: -

LinkedIn as a 2nd Website

Using automated platforms is a game-changer, however, there are some caveats.  Firstly, it takes some logical planning and effort to get all the images together, but using A.I. like Mid Journey is a spectacular time saver.

LinkedIn on the other hand does not like automated processes stealing traffic away from its platform.  LinkedIn and all social media site operate on ‘dwell time’.  They want browsers to stay where they are and not be tempted away.  To avoid this, LinkedIn provide Company pages, which I’m sure you’re aware of.  In addition, there re showcase pages.  Use these pages as your virtual second website.

Post your articles and content on the respective pages and point the links on your automated posts to link to the respective LinkedIn article pages.  This ensures a high distribution ratio and stops your content getting throttled.

Don't ignore your own website either, but simply be aware that a website (see our page on it here) is a holding location for your content.  

Expecting Great Things – And SEO

I can only speak from experience on this one.  Many people profess to have the inside track on Google and their requirements for good SEO.  I feel fortunate on two fronts, firstly, I believed I was on the right track and secondly, it was confirmed via trawling through umpteen videos to find out that my logic and strategy was right. 

This was further confirmed once I began a systemised method to create content, based upon my template and monitored Google Search Console (GSC) indexing everything I posted.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about – Google have a website that monitors everything happening on your website.  Using GSC you are able to monitor how many links are provided by your site map and the last time it was submitted to Google.  It confirms if your web page has been indexed or not, and if an article or page has not been indexed, gives an indication what you need to do to put it right.  If you’re not indexed, your page does not exist on Google search or to the rest of the world.

In addition to this, Google will visit your website perhaps once a week.  The quicker your web pages load and the less errors you have the more pages will be indexed.

For more information about this subject, take a look at our SEO and SEM page.

What’s in it for you?

Current strategies have been failing for decades because no one developed a comprehensive alternative plan and everyone kept following the cheapest, lowest common denominator related to new business which is cold calling. 

In short, we all inherited a post-war approach that kept elevating the ‘spiv’ salesperson who had the biggest mouth and got the most sales, but the past two decades have proven a change is required. 

Business process management and digital transformation strategies delivered by the top consultancies around the world provide state-of-the-art technical efficiencies in business operations, but not in generating new business.

Adopting a Digital Selling approach means higher profitability and lower operational costs, pro-rata.  The ratios can be changed from selling 1:1 to one-to-many. 

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6. The Engagement Strategy

Anyone who has experience of marketing knows that it can deliver very poor results and for good reason.  Back in 1997, research was done, and a book published stating it took approximately ten messages to a prospect before the company became visible or recognised as a relevant brand. 

From the beginning of 2000 it was accepted that one-in-three messages would get through to a prospect.  Therefore, thirty messages were required.  Today, it’s not ten messages required but nearer thirty.  Accounting for the 1-in-3 or 1-in-4, a business needs to have approximately 120 adverts or messages directed at their target market to gain traction.

This level of activity can only be achieved by automation.

Social 444 - Automated Exposure

Social 444 is an automated social posting and distribution strategy whereby you create 120 image/adverts and auto-post them 4x day, every week, every month and repeat for up to 12-18 months.  The Adverts promote and provide links to the content you have created on your website.

An automated platform is low cost, we use www.recurpost.com, and your graphics and images can be created, curated using stock images and A.I. Full details of our Social 444 Automated Distribution Strategy, click here - How to get More Prospects: Automated Visibility for B2B

Social 444 Strategy Brochure front cover

Inviting Prospects to Watch Your Live Show

Identifying your TAM

Say your total addressable market (TAM) is 10,000 business in the UK.  You are going to tell all of them all at once to watch a live business show – YOUR LIVE SHOW. To learn more about reaching your Total Addressable Market.

Between 1% to 15% of your TAM are planning to start their buying journey to buy your type of product every week.  Of your 10,000 TAM Database - 1% is 100 prospects.  Most businesses couldn’t handle 100 prospects this week, let alone 1500.  Here are some important points: - 

  1. Only a percentage of the 1-15% will watch!
  2. Your competition is also trying to get into your prospects as well – all the time.
  3. Trying to find this small percentage of prospects is needle in haystack, 1 x straw at a time!

The simplicity of this strategy is that you get exposure to your all your prospective market all at the same time and to do something your competition are not – they’re not live streaming. 

This is the only effective and low-cost strategy you can do.  No one has the budget for endless PPC or television advert or remarketing for all the failed reasons I’ve mentioned before.

Our website is set up to help educate every single business in the world that wants to learn about implementing a live streaming new business development strategy and they never have to talk to me until they’re ready. 

Company sizes within the UK

turnover per person per annum infographic

  • 0-10 - 5.7m
  • 11-49 - 212k
  • 50-249 - 36k
  • 250+ - 8k

There are over 50m B2Bs across Europe and databases cost approx. £300 per ‘000 – but you’ve probably got one already on your contact management system (Salesforce), right?

Building Anticipation

You send out a series of emails starting about 6-8 weeks before the first live show, building up anticipation and excitement.  As you near the live date, the emails become more frequent and in the last week, they are daily telling them it’s coming, it’s coming and then on the last day, you tell them “We’re live in an hour!!!!!”.

You do know that emailing 10,000 up to 12x a month only costs about £100! (Mailchimp, not an MAP).

In conjunction with the emails, to achieve awareness, you are also to exploit Social 444, LinkedIn banners and Pay Per Click by uploading the same 10,000 name database to LinkedIn and ensuring that our banners appear on their newsfeeds too.

In addition, there are many PR and other promotional opportunities to be had from business press to vertical website banner advertising. 

The social media Caution

Don’t get hung up on posting to social media.  Infrequent visitors to social media mean it will be harder to make a connection. Therefore, you need direct access, i.e., direct e-mail to gain acceptance into their e-mail inbox.

This will undoubtedly mean you must accept a long duration before achieving actual engagement, but not from everyone because you’re dealing with a much larger segment.

To stimulate wider visibility, you may need to consider public relations, external publications, guest writing, guests on podcast shows, and public speaking events.

Your need to be mindful that your strategy is now building up to something that keeps going as this is not a one-off campaign or a ‘just-in-time’ approach.

After each week’s live show is broadcast, the e-mail and messaging continue, informing your TAM of the events that happened during last week’s show (what they missed!!!!) and they’re told what’s planned for the upcoming week’s show.

A further email is sent 1-2 hours before the show is broadcast.

The platform Restream I used as a transport platform to enable broadcasting on LinkedIn.  Shows are schedule on LinkedIn and there is tight integration between the two.  Restream also enables you to broadcast simultaneously on Facebook and YouTube.

The scope and opportunity your business is breath-taking.

To recap – Buy a database, invite your TAM to a live show and steal-the-march on your competition – simple.  Costs pennies.  Destroys your competition.

So you’re thinking – OK, so we do a live show, but we’ve never done a live show before, how are we going to get started and what are we going to talk about? – We’re going to do the HOW next week, The ‘WHAT’ are we going to talk about bit, is the ENGAGEMENT

Engagement

Provide a digital customer experience that enables buyers to remain anonymous, self-educate and engage with you when they’re ready.  Part-and-parcel of this is to present an authentic experience whenever they engage with you.  Even the photographs and images you use will affect their reaction and response.

Enable buyers to place orders, book professional services or buy licences online, or at the very least enable browsers to book meetings with salespeople if a high level of configuration is required.  

NOTE: If your TAM is 10,000, then approx. 100 people each week would be looking to start their buying process.  To find these people in a timely fashion would require 100 Business Development Representatives (BDR’s) at today’s current success ratio of finding an interested prospect of 400-1.

Looking at a live show – it’s made up of different segments – some are static and are used every time and others, you simply select the ones you want to use for that particular show. 

The terminology is called the Show Flow and Show Segments.  Visit our Go Live page and download the PDFs under the Project Management Section.

Go live Logo for LinkedIn

Monitoring & Managing

It is essential to implement both SEO and SEM practices which operate in conjunction with Google TAG Manager.  These pages/elements are to be constantly analysed by Google Analytics

Audio & Video Expertise

Delivering Podcasts, Video and Live Streams requires a change of expertise within your organisation.  We help with the transition to ensure you become self-sufficient as quickly as possible.

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6. Digital Marketing Conclusion

Most business owners desire to create a profitable, sustainable organisation that can function with the least amount of effort.  Existing Sales and Marketing has never been a model to be relied upon. 

Digital Selling, combined with digital marketing as described above changes everything.  Once it is understood, after all the old and incorrect notions of what sales and marketing is today, you will begin to understand how Digital Selling can reduce your costs and headcount and increase profitability unlike any strategy before now. 

That's why it demands a conversation first.  

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Author

The author and founder of salesXchange, Nigel Maine is a B2B marketing and sales expert with a proven track record in scaling up growth for Technology, SaaS, and Professional Services organisations. With 30 years hands-on experience and unique approach, Nigel has developed an effective strategy that dramatically increases exposure and profitability for B2B organizations.

Nigel has founded multiple start-ups, is a published author, public speaker and hosts both a podcast and business live streaming show, broadcast on LinkedIn Live, YouTube & Facebook. He also has extensive knowledge of MarTech software, creative hardware and software, and A.I. prompting tools.  Contact: 0800 970 9751 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


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