Quick B2B Marketing Fixes to Tackle During the Summer

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For a lot of B2B companies, summer means a slower pace. If this rings true for your business, consider investing your free time in refining your marketing materials and online web presence – a task that often gets pushed to the bottom of to-do lists during the first two quarters of the year.

Here’s a list of some quick fixes and small adjustments you can tackle that will make a big difference in your day-to-day B2B marketing.

Branding

Even the best branding will evolve over time. Take a look at your website, email marketing campaigns and print marketing materials to ensure they represent the current state of your company and its offerings.

Does your website display all of your recent accomplishments? If you haven’t already, add photos of recent industry awards and individual recognitions received by your company and leadership.

Streamline your brand identity across your website. If you’ve made adjustments to your typography, color palette, logo or imagery style, double check older site pages and printed collateral that may have been overlooked during your brand update rollout.

Seek out testimonials from your best clients. One of the key self-identifiers for many brands is their close ties with the wants and needs of their clientele. Collect feedback from a few executives, along with headshots, and add them to your site. This small initiative can go a long way with site visitors and leads.

Digital

Digital encompasses many tactics from social advertising and selling to search engine marketing (SEM) and search engine optimization (SEO). All of these are complex endeavors that require daily attention and care.

If you already have SEO or SEM operations in place, here are some ways you can fine tune existing campaigns.

  • SEO

Take a look at the existing pages of your website.  Look for opportunities to logically add target keywords related to your services and location in the existing copy.

Another way to improve your on-site SEO is to find opportunities to “intralink.” For example, take an updated version of an archived blog, visit the older version and include a call-to-action (CTA) link to the new content.

  • SEM

If you utilize pay-per-click (PPC) ad campaigns via Google Adwords, you know that there are many moving parts. Take ads that are underperforming and duplicate them. Change one element – such as the headline or the CTA; A/B testing creates an opportunity to make improvements without reinventing the wheel.

Another way to change up your SEM campaigns is to alter your bid strategy. Is one of your service verticals a lot slower during the summer months? Lower your bid or pause the campaign altogether. Conversely, up your bid for a campaign that is already showing piqued interest from users on search.

The beauty of Google Adwords and other paid search engine marketing platforms is how easy they are to customize. Don’t be afraid to try something new!

PR & Social

Public relations and social media are two channels that many businesses neglect. As marketers, we know all too well that in the world of social media and earned media, you only get out what you put in.

This summer, give your social pages a refresh. Some quick and easy changes you can make beyond updating your profile picture and cover photo include:

  • Adding more content to your “About Us” or “Bio” section
    • Facebook in particular allows you to add additional contact information, hours of operation, the availability of public transportation and parking near your office and a business description.
  • Inviting more people to like your Facebook page and following more relevant accounts on Instagram and Twitter
    • This strategy can help with social accounts that need more followers or engagement. Sometimes you have to initiate!
  • Creating an editorial calendar for social media
    • Creating social media posts on the fly can be stressful. Put together some weekly content themes that you can rely on to give your pages a consistent presence.

Of course if you don’t currently have a social media presence, now’s the time to create one.

Traditional Marketing

B2B marketing trends have certainly shifted to digital methods in recent years, and growing ever still. Yet some traditional marketing methods maintain strong ROI, especially for the B2B sector.

During your downtime this summer, take a look at these key tactics and suggested improvements:

  • Email Marketing
    Believe it or not, 33% of marketers aren’t optimizing their email campaigns according to GateResponse. One key way to optimize an email campaign is by adjusting your send time. Most reports show that engagement tapers off at the end of the work week. In addition, Mail Chimp reported the best time of day to be 10AM. Don’t forget to adjust for different time zones!
  • Marketing Materials
    Many B2B companies still utilize print brochures. Although a complete overhaul would be an awesome summer goal, there are minor improvements you can make such as updating the stock photos and adding social media handles for added engagement opportunities.

Integrated Marketing

The key to truly successful B2B marketing is strategically integrating all the pieces. If you don’t have a marketing plan, learn where to start with a marketing plan outline tip sheet.

The best marketing planners had their 2017 tactics outlined at the start of the year. The summer months provide a great opportunity to reassess your plan at its halfway mark, benchmarking what’s working and what’s not. With key players and influencers taking time off during the summer, it may not be the ideal time for a complete brand strategy overhaul, but these little improvements can take your company a long way.

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Mark Schmukler, CEO and Co-founder of Sagefrog Marketing Group, LLC, brings more than 30 years of global marketing and consulting experience to the agency, leveraging his B2B background to lead brand strategy and business development. Based in Doylestown, PA and Princeton, NJ, Sagefrog Marketing Group is a full-service B2B marketing agency with specialties in healthcare, technology and business services. Founded by Mark Schmukler and Suzanne Morris in 2002, Sagefrog’s mission is to accelerate client success through integrated marketing including branding, digital, public relations, social media and traditional services. Visit Sagefrog.com or call 215.230.9024.

13 thoughts on “Quick B2B Marketing Fixes to Tackle During the Summer

  1. Hey MIchael,

    I think the modern marketer needs a mix of marketing and technical skills to survive.

    To be successful online you still need to find your niche, understand your audience, build your funnel etc so I think the growth hacker still has a lot of marketing skills but they may not have gone to College to get it!

    Ian

  2. The article makes a great point that growth hacking is simultaneous product development and marketing. The next step is automation.

  3. Marketing today isn’t what it used to be a few years ago because the world has evolved since then and marketing has evolved along with it. As new marketing channels and technologies emerged, marketers have employed new techniques to reach audiences as well as measure and optimize their ongoing marketing efforts.

    The terms “growth hacking”, “growth hackers” or even just “growth hacks” irk me to no end because they suggest that growth hackers are some sort of “advanced marketing wizards” in a class by themselves and that growth hacking is a brand new job function. It’s not. It’s just what savvy, modern marketers are doing these days anyway as part of their job.

    It might be more accurate to refer to “growth hacking” as a modern marketing technique, but I don’t think it’s right to differentiate between a “marketer” and a “growth hacker” because in this day and age their goal is one and the same.

    The difference is that professional marketers have also trained and practiced (sometimes for many years) to hone an expertise across a variety of marketing disciplines whereas “growth hackers” are usually technically inclined people who experiment with marketing, design and analytics to solve specific problems quickly as part of an overall marketing strategy.

    That’s my humble opinion!

  4. Direct marketing principles up front and personal.

    The days of the agency mindset are going away for the
    most part, it has become so easy to track almost everything that it doesn’t make any sense to not track and test and retrack and retest until we find the most persuasive message.

  5. Great article Michael. Despite being the culprit who coined the term growth hacking, I agree that marketing and growth hacking are essentially the same thing.

    Marketing is evolving to deal with the pressure caused by real-time data feedback loops. As marketers, we can no longer live under the illusion that a customer acquisition program is working. If something isn’t working, we know it immediately. We either need to cut it or try to quickly optimize it to start working.

    Old days of long-term marketing plans and fixed budgets are no longer realistic. Marketing is realtime and requires an agile mindset, tools and processes to support rapid iteration and rapid scaling of sustainable growth programs.

    Growth levers extend beyond channels, through the entire conversion funnel to deep within products. Marketing is evolving toward dealing with these challenges and opportunities – growth hacking is a more revolutionary approach that started with these challenges and opportunities in mind. Eventually it all becomes the same thing.

  6. Interesting post, Michael. It was suggested to me during a Twitter exchange last week that growth hacking is the reinvented version of guerrilla marketing… what do you think?

    The definition you provided seems to match up…

  7. My ideal combination is “start with why” and the growth hacking mindset.
    Thank you Michael Brenner put a name on what i had so much hard time to define. What the marketing always should have been.

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