Blog Archives: Brand Management

October 10, 2014: This is a question that I get asked frequently and often wonder at times myself: How does B2B marketing compare with B2C marketing? In specific areas of implementation, like creativity and audience targeting, B2B marketing has specific qualities that may make it easier to implement than projects aimed toward B2C audiences.

While both types of marketing focus on targeting a specific persona or audience, the way we go about it can vary. Just as this doesn’t mean one is ‘better’ than the other (that would be like saying books are better than bananas; it just doesn’t make sense), simplicity can be difficult to quantify. Here are a few areas where B2B marketing can shine.

September 22, 2014: The collaboration of Inbound 2014 and FutureM brought together over 10,000 marketers and “tech geeks” from around the world. As you can imagine, the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center was oozing creativity and eagerness to exchange knowledge.

Inbound 2014 - A Marketer's Rock Concert! #Inbound14 #Marketing

This three-day extravaganza explored every topic from marketing strategies to leadership to data and analytics. While not every session related directly to B2B marketing, I couldn’t help but think of the link of these intriguing concepts and their application in the space.

August 28, 2014: B2B marketing isn’t a perfect industry (what industry is?), but the main arguments against B2B marketing, like unoriginality, competition, and boring products, are also the areas where a company can stand out most online. The following are some of the biggest problems with B2B marketing and how you can make your campaigns stand out.

It’s Not Original

b2b problemsBecause they aren’t forced to be innovative since their audience is so much smaller than the B2C market, B2B marketers (and usually their executive supervisors) may be used to just pushing the same postcards, email blasts, and online promotions over and over. However, it’s important to remember that those you are trying to reach from a B2B perspective are consumers as well, just in a business sense.

July 17, 2014: With more businesses integrating SEO into their marketing teams (and with it increasingly becoming mainstream), SEO has moved beyond just keywords and links and it’s now, in fact, influencing all facets of marketing. It’s even creeping into other departments like IT.

While that opens the door for overlap, it also introduces full coverage and a better overall marketing program. And…just like SEO is influencing other departments, other departments should be influencing SEO.

I’ve talked previously about how the SEO team can use PR strategies to build links but there is much more that can be done to help a business be successful. Here are 3 other things your SEO can be doing right now:

June 12, 2014: Users online are smart. They use the internet every day and are no longer phased by fancy blinking banner ads or emails that promise they will make $5,000 in a single week. In fact, KoMarketing’s 2014 B2B Web Usability report revealed that the top elements causing buyers to leave vendor websites included distracting video or audio that plays automatically and animated ads that crawl across a page or pop up.

Yet, businesses continuously “dumb down” their marketing and advertising for users in hopes of reaching the highest number of people. While the world has no shortage of idiots, the average internet user is middle class and many have an advanced education: the 2011 census showed that almost 90% of all households in the United States that had bachelors degrees had internet access.

Instead of tricking your audience into believing something is real (e.g. the Pepsi Max commercial that the internet has decried as fake), why not focus your efforts on creating lasting connections through genuine storytelling, which makes great experiences for your users?

May 29, 2014: While this title is a little sensationalistic, it serves a good reminder that we as marketers occasionally focus too much on the idea of strategic B2B marketing and how it is supposed to work, instead of looking at the tactics that are actually unsuccessful versus successful, especially in a highly digitalized and mobile world.

Perhaps B2B marketers should become less intent on email blast and mass messaging for their particular audience and turn their attention toward what their customers actually want: campaigns may be more fruitful, regardless of inbound versus outbound focus. Let’s look at the concepts behind a B2B marketing world where the thought of traditional marketing didn’t actually exist, and real connections did.

May 1, 2014: DMFB ConferenceWe have a busy May here at KoMarketing, with several conferences this month and summer officially kicking off Memorial Day weekend. That being said, I’ll be headed to Raleigh, NC next week to speak at the Digital Marketing for Business conference. If you aren’t familiar with the show, it’s a 3-day conference featuring 40 sessions geared toward small businesses, enterprise marketers, and marketing experts.

While I’ve presented on a number of topics ranging from link building to WordPress to content marketing, I’m really excited about the topic for this show, “Building Your Online Brand Through Customers.” I’m a big believer that existing customers are one of the best (and most overlooked) assets of marketing and can play a major role in a company’s brand, especially online.

October 2, 2013: There are few things in life better than having that “Ah, Ha!” moment. You know, when things start to really click and a path for the future becomes a bit more clearly defined. Myself, and I’m sure other marketers in attendance at the AMA’s “Past, Present, and Future of Content Marketing: Impacting Behavioral Change” event had a few of these moments, as we listened in on a thought-filled panel discussion among esteemed industry experts.

July 31, 2013: When building out a distinctive B2B brand message, one of the questions branding experts might ask is, “What are the current perceptions and attitudes about your brand?”. We all have our own perceptions, but nothing compares better than how others perceive or associate your message. While the easiest and most direct way to obtain this answer is to actually ask the customer(s), there are reasons why this might not be possible.

First, customers are busy and it can be difficult to get their time for such an exercise, especially for such a potentially penetrating question. Second, because of the sensitive nature this infers, customers may be reluctant to speak candidly (this is why branding experts would often want to interview customers separately).

Fortunately there are internet marketing related reports and resources that provide immediate insight into how well your B2B brand message resonates with target audiences. Here are five examples to consider.

March 26, 2013: A few weeks back I wrote a column for Search Engine Land on B2B buyer personas. In exploring the persona concept, it further supported my opinion that for SEO to truly be effective for the B2B organization, SEO needs to run hand-in-hand with traditional B2B marketing initiatives.

In this post, I want to discuss how B2B SEO discovery can be integrated into buyer persona development, in turn creating a more effective search engine optimization strategy in the long run.

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John Yeung

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