The Top Features of a Successful B2B Brand (and How You Can Do the Same)
Finding success in the world of business to business (B2B) takes determination and some innovation. One way to learn how to be the best you can be is by studying what other companies accomplish. You can learn from your competitors and non-competitor B2B brands.
The Drum recently reported how the recognition of B2B brands is edging ahead of consumer ones due to the pandemic and people becoming more familiar with tech and bio firms and their abilities. Now is an excellent opportunity to become a household name and increase your reach among the masses.
You may have the drive to become a top-selling B2B brand, but feel unsure of the steps needed to get there. Fortunately, there are many companies who’ve gone before you. Studying their success helps keep you in the game.
How Do You Build a Successful B2B Brand?
The features of a successful business to business company include big concepts and minor tweaks. To excel at what you do, you must become a good listener and tester. Try new things and see how your audience responds.
Here are our favorite ideas for building your B2B brand into a household name. We’ll also look at a few companies killing it, so you can learn from the best. There are many paths to success, but these will help get you there fast.
#1. Clear UVP
What is your unique value proposition (UVP) and how does it compare to the competition? Your UVP needs to be something your customers care about. You might pride yourself on your company culture or how long you’ve been in business, but unless you can define it through the eyes of the consumer, they won’t care.
Perhaps being in business for 100 years means you have the most knowledge of any of your competitors and can solve customer problems quickly. Your UVP must always relate to a benefit to business owners.
For example, if you have the most inventory of any competing business, how does that benefit your customers? Look at it from the perspective of always having the items they need in stock. It’s the same concept, but worded a bit differently to focus on the positive aspects for your clients.
Advantage Outfitters points out several advantages to their clients, including items being in stock, fast shipping and a price-match guarantee. These are all things of value to their customers.
#2. Core Values
Do you have a clear vision of your company’s directions and core values? When you have standards, you won’t chase after every new concept or trend. Instead, you’ll run every decision through the filter of what your brand stands for and your underlying objectives.
Knowing your core values helps you remain consistent in the way you deal with your clients and the products you offer. When you add something new, run it through the filter of your standards and if that item fits.
#3. Know Your Audience
You probably already have a few facts about your typical buyer. Dig really deep into your internal data and develop buyer personas based on demographics and psychographics. Poll your current clients and ask them what you can do better. Survey them to see what their needs and wants are.
How do you align with their pain points? What are the issues your customers face? Figure out the emotions behind those problems. For example, if a company needs a service you offer, what thing drives them to seek you out? What is the typical emotion driving them? Is it fear? Know how to respond to the emotion to grab their attention.
Drip specializes in helping e-commerce companies reach their customers via email campaigns. They know their audience well and point out the ease of using their product without coding skills. They even offer a free trial so busy e-commerce business owners have a chance to try before they buy.
#4. Prioritize Value
You might be more inclined to point out the price of your product, but if you don’t offer the features of competitors, your clients won’t care. Instead of pointing out the price, talk about the value of your product and how it benefits your audience.
What features does your product or service offer that no one else does? Why would your customer care? Make sure you always approach your content through the eyes of the user. Talk about the things they care most about.
#5. Make the Process Easy
Business owners often wear multiple hats and don’t have time to navigate a complicated website or lengthy ordering processes. Instead, make the entire system as intuitive as possible. Add filters so users can get to the exact thing they most want. Invest in systems that allow for quick ordering, even from a mobile device.
Ask your top customers to go through the process and provide feedback on needed improvements. The more you refine your ordering process, the easier it will be on your clients. You may even want to offer automated reorders for those who buy at predictable intervals.
Blake Envelopes uses a filtering system to help users find the exact color, style and paper type they need for their business purposes. If the automated search features don’t work, they also have a live chat icon just under the search box, so users can ask specific questions.
#6. Improve the Sales Process
You likely spend a lot of time and energy seeking new leads. The last thing you want is to drive traffic to your site only to have users bounce away. If you lose just one $200 per month client a week, you’ll lose $2.7 million in five years. Tweaking your sales funnel can mean the difference between profit and loss.
How can you ensure the funnel moves users through smoothly? Start by cutting the clutter. What is the purpose of each page of the buyer’s journey? Does everything on the page point the user to the next step? Try new things, test them and refine until your conversion rates meet or exceed industry standards.
#7. Utilize the Power of CTAs
Your calls to action (CTAs) have the power to entice users to click. Make sure the language on the buttons works, they are placed where they grab attention and they pop on the page.
Create actionable CTAs through contrast with the rest of the page, such as a pop of color. Your language should be familiar—use first or second-person. Think about placement and if users see the CTA at the point they are most likely to click on it.
Asana places several strategic CTAs on their landing page. The black “Get Started” button pops against the light background and grabs user attention. They also use some animation by placing a couple of CTAs over the image on the right and making them bounce as the user mouses over them. The checkmarks encourage site visitors to click and see what happens.
#8. Train Your Team
Does your team feel they are a partner in your company? You want them to all be on the same page and buy into your brand philosophy. However, they need to have input and feel comfortable enough to try new ideas.
Spend as much time training your staff in how to interact with customers as you do on any other aspect of your business. Without your clients, your business won’t find success. Develop a customer-centric culture within your company.
Your team should work together to come up with creative solutions. If you make just one client completely happy and wow them with your innovation, they’re very likely to tell others and spread the word about your business. Word-of-mouth advertising is the cheapest and most powerful method of building your brand available.
#9. Reinvest in Your Brand
As you do see success unfold, invest back in your business. Update equipment, automate repetitive tasks and hire the best people in your industry. Top companies don’t just skim off the revenue no matter how tempting it might be.
Instead, they set aside a percentage to focus on trying new ideas and growing their brand. There are many paths to growth, but only you can decide which one is right for your vision and principles. Find the things that matter to you and your clients and invest in them.
It’s easy to get sidetracked as your company grows. People may remember when McDonald’s used to sell pizzas or Burger King introduced tacos. Neither went over well, because these foods were outside of the wheelhouse of what each company was known for.
It’s good to try new things but keep them within the parameters of what you’re famous for. It’s better to perfect and refine what you already do than add a side hustle that makes no sense for your image.
Spend time tweaking your processes until they are the best they can be. Pay attention to what your competitors do and strive to improve over time. With a little attention to detail, you’ll find you’re one of the top businesses in your industry and your clients flock to you for answers.
About the Author!
Eleanor Hecks is editor-in-chief at Designerly Magazine. Eleanor was the creative director and occasional blog writer at a prominent digital marketing agency before becoming her own boss in 2018. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and dog, Bear.