If it is possible to offer a diagnosis on the B2B customer right now, it would be this one: We have forgotten how to pay attention, not because we wish to, but because we have too much to pay attention to. Inundated by messages, whether they’re on phones or laptops, means there is a lot of clutter, and much of this messaging will by necessity command little of our attention.
In the B2B sphere, it has never mattered more that marketing content be easily understood and offer great value to a potential customer. Welcome to the Attention Economy, where human attention is treated as a scarcity. People only have so much time and smart B2B marketing is key to capturing attention, or you risk losing your audience altogether.
Consider the Attention Cycle of a typical marketing initiative, an email campaign, that unless the messaging offers clear, valuable and long-standing customer connections, is just an exercise in generating volume, not results.
As you can see, message generation, without strategic intent and purposefulness, leads to less attention, not more. The idea that simply sending more emails will get more eyeballs is inherently incorrect.
Attention is incredibly valuable. That’s why we don’t just “give our attention” – we “pay attention.” With an ever-escalating volume of marketing messages bombarding audiences online, creating brand-focused assets that resonate and cut through the clutter has become of great importance. Get noticed or get lost in the crowd – this has never been truer than today. If you want someone to “pay attention,” you must make sure what you offer is of value.
Along with your marketing team, sales team, management and marketing agency, you must first decide who you want to reach. Get specific – exactly who are you targeting? Is it a potential customer who responds well to the latest technology and who will want to know more about the innovation at your plant? Is it a cost-conscious customer who will be motivated to act when they find out that your company can now do larger production runs for less? Your content marketing strategy doesn’t have to be complicated, but it does need to be effective. Using your outside B2B marketing agency can provide crucial insight into ways to make any marketing efforts more impactful. If you’re already uncertain that you’ve identified key targets, or are reaching them effectively, you might want to read more about Account Based Marketing.
B2B marketing in the Attention Economy means creating content that matters to the reader. What do these key targets value and how can you develop invaluable content that will become a “must read” for them. In the new Attention Economy, capturing the attention of a prospect is only the first step. By serving value, you will “command attention” in the future. Your marketing efforts should be anticipated content your key target looks forward to receiving. It should be smart, aligned with your brand, and aligned with your goals – and make that recipient feel it is worthy of their valuable attention.
What do you want your potential customer to do? Download a whitepaper? Sign up for a webinar? Come to a tradeshow or event? Good B2B marketing materials are always driven by clear calls-to-action, and in the Attention Economy, clarity and thoughtfulness in driving engagement is more important than ever. Consider how a marketing asset’s call-to-action will foster further engagement – and will give you the opportunity to turn a contact into an on-going relationship. Monitoring how readers respond to those calls-to-action, how they engage, and the feedback they provide also has benefits. By tracking those interactions, you may get insights that help you zero in on your potential customers’ concerns and needs.
In the Attention Economy, tracking what does and doesn’t work is critical to long term returns. Work with your team and your marketing agency to make sure efforts are effective. Monitor each campaign asset, and use analytics, tracking and other measurable results to ensure you are having success getting attention – the attention of your target. Digitally, you can see if your efforts are returning results via more website traffic, directing new traffic to the site, offering content that makes people engage with your brand, or submitting website forms. It can mean more attendees at your next event, more people recognizing your name, or more requests for quotes coming in. Ensuring that you are getting a return keeps everyone motivated to continue the outreach to new clients.
It may be a new way of thinking for your organization, but even though there are marketing costs associated with developing content-driven, strategic creative, the idea that you are offering something of value to your prospective customer base is critical in the Attention Economy. More than creating another B2B marketing asset, you are actually creating value in the mind of your potential customer.
The demand for content is huge. Marketing surveys reveal that 75% of B2B purchasers rely on content as a research medium when they look to make a buying decision. Provide value and attention will be paid.
Thinking about how you can capture attention with your B2B marketing in the frenetic world of the Attention Economy? Contact us and we’ll help you identify key targets and develop smart, strategic, attention-capturing marketing initiatives. Let us help you Power Up Your Marketing today.
Unlike many advertising and marketing agencies, B2B isn’t just something that we do, it’s all we do. We’ll work to help your brand achieve its goals through the strategic combination of creativity, communication and technology. Our focused client intake processes give us the ability to thoroughly understand your business, products and objectives, working to identify the competitive advantages and opportunities that will grow awareness, leads and sales. We develop innovative marketing plans with strategic, data-driven processes, presenting complex ideas and compelling messages that position your business ahead of the competition. As your cooperative partner, our integrated B2B marketing agency is dedicated to your success. Reach out and let’s talk about how you can strategically capture your audience’s attention. We’re here to help.
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