Read this if you’re in B2B marketing

If you know anything about me and the values of Pink Digital then you’ll know that I am passionate about breaking down the belief that B2B brands must market in a completely different, impersonal way to B2C brands. I’ve written a post previously (back in October 2017) about the importance of remembering that your customers are humans and, how the global digital disruption (oooh, buzzword), needs to be considered for all organisations when creating your marketing strategy.

Now I’m going to talk more around how people’s personal beliefs, likes, dislikes, preferences and beliefs are impacting decisions in the workplace. I.e. why you should stop thinking something won’t work for you because it’s a traditional B2C tactic and why you need to lean into content that appeals to people.

First some questions: when was the last time you can honestly say you made a decision that was completely against your personal beliefs but was for the good of your company? Have you ever stopped working for a company because of how they operate or interact with you?
Have you ever found a new company to work with because their messaging was so up your street?

The chances are you answered: not for a long time, if ever; yes; yes.

There are 2 reasons for this.

1) You have been hired by your company for your expertise, mindset and experience. This means that it is very unlikely that if something is fundamentally against your beliefs personally, that it will benefit the company. You have been hired for your opinion. You know that and so will likely exercise your right to that opinion when making decisions on behalf of the company. Otherwise, I’m sorry but you shouldn’t be in your job.

2) It is physically impossible to completely separate your personal preferences for consumption, interaction and values, regardless of what you are researching or buying for. It’s not in our nature as human beings.

This means that who your company is and how your company operate are two of the most important aspects of your marketing strategy. And, you need to have a crystal clear view of who your target audience is – deeper than their job title.

You have to understand what they like, what they dislike, what their hobbies are, whether they have children, love sports, hate sports, are into fashion. Where do they over index? What values are important to them? All of these different elements can help to inform your tone, messaging, visuals and placements. It’s also why it is so important to continue to invest in brand awareness, not just sell, sell, sell your products. No one cares if you have the most cost-effective solution if you aren’t an ethical company nor will they want to partner with a company who’s employees are not happy or passionate – for example.

B2C marketing is often seen as the holy grail of marketing and super fun to work on because their campaigns focus on people and lifestyle. But you can appeal to people as well. Make people excited about your brand. Relate to them through their interests in more than just a badging exercise – find an organic connection between an element of their persona & your brand.

Then leverage the shit out of it.

Show the people at the core of the organisations you are targeting that you are there for them, that you understand them and that you can help them. Create an organic, human connection. The sales will soon follow if your website, products & sales team can do their job.

Instagram for business

Let’s talk Instagram for business, why you should be on it and some top tips & tricks for succeeding. It’s such a great platform and even if you don’t think your business is *right* for Instagram there are still some phenomenal benefits to be had.

  1. Build awareness – eye pleasing visuals grab the attention of people endlessly scrolling. Research has shown that on average people spend 53 minutes a day on Instagram, second only to Facebook at 58 minutes per day. Have you read my post about the value of being insta-worthy? We talk about how leveraging this quality can boost awareness & engagement. If you aren’t active then you’re missing out on connecting with your audience, which brings me nicely onto my next point…
  2. Build a real connection with your audience & customers – a few years back I wrote a piece on the importance of remembering that everyone is marketing to a human being. Instagram is the platform to build that connection at a human level. With a more real-time feel than other platforms, the ability to add snippets of content in stories and bring your company to life it can help breakdown some of the walls between customer & brand. Especially in the B2B world.

So, how do you master it? I’m glad you asked!

Here are my top 10 tips for mastering Instagram:

  1. Set the right expectations for yourself: take the time to assess whether Instagram is going to be a predominantly awareness/community building or sales based platform for you.
  2. Make sure it’s on brand: if possible ensure your handle matches your company name and that the colours, image style, tone of voice all match your brand
  3. Make the most out of your bio: include descriptive copy with a call-to-action. Don’t forget that you’re allowed one URL so make sure it’s a good one – I like to either link to my blog posts or a current offer
  4. Have specific content pillars: stay structured and consistent with your content by developing themes that align to your brand & goals. I recommend 3-6 content pillars depending on your type of business
  5. Plan ahead of time: there is nothing more stressful than getting to the day you need to post and not having a clue what to do. Preparation is absolutely key and can help you stay aligned to your brand
  6. Ensure you have a # strategy: hashtags are a great way to reach new followers and tap into existing conversations. Make sure you have a mix of broad and narrow reach hashtags. Do some research and see what ones your target audience and competitors are using
  7. Use location: by using location tags you can increase your reach as people search posts tagged in locations. If you tag a location in your story you could even be included in that location’s story… more exposure!
  8. Make the most of your stories: IG stories are a great way to provide more insights to your audience on you, your employees, the day to day of your business and help people feel connected to your business/brand
  9. Engage meaningfully with your audience: if you’re going to grow your following & engagement on Instagram then you need to engage too! Make sure you’re replying to comments in a meaningful way and make sure you are engaging with others’ posts too. Stay authentic in your engagements but make sure you set some time aside each day to do this
  10. Use analytics: Instagram offers free insights into your content, audience and activity. Use these insights to better serve your customers content that will resonate with them and that will aid your growth.

If you want some help in setting up or improving your Instagram strategy drop us an email at – we offer both one off workshops and monthly support packages.

Dealing with change

Change is the only constant. Change brings about opportunity. Change brings about growth.

3 phrases you hear all the time when you enter the business world, particularly in the tech industry. And it is true – change is inevitable and the only thing you can be sure of. That doesn’t mean it’s always easy to deal with.

Having learned this the hard way – one time I actually cried at work due something big changing – I thought I’d share my top tips on not just how to cope with change but how to embrace it.

  1. Take a step back. Before you do anything else, take some time to digest the information. If you’re at work, take a walk to the coffee area, pop outside, go to the bathroom… anything that means you take a complete step back from the situation before reacting. Give yourself a chance to breathe and catch up with your thoughts.
  2. Understand what it actually means. When announcements are made it’s very easy to jump to conclusions, your mind starts whizzing around and before you know it you have convinced yourself that this is the worst thing that could have happened. Talk to your manager, read any resources that are provided and ask questions. Don’t make assumptions.
  3. Look at your options. Don’t wait for someone else to determine your fate. Too often it’s the people that sit and wait for the consequence to happen that end up losing out. When change is announced and you understand what it means, work out how this aligns to what you want to do.
  4. Get a go-to person. Both at work and in your personal life. This can make a world of difference. You need someone at work who you can trust and that will go for a walk with you when you need it – you don’t need to explain things to them they just get it. This can often be more useful in those *oh, crap* moments at work than your support network at home.
  5. Fake it ’til you make it. I can’t emphasise this enough. No one really knows what they are doing and if you keep telling yourself that you’re okay, that you know what you’re doing and you can handle it. At some point you really do start to believe it.

So, there you have it. 5 top tips from a converted change-hater to change-lover.

P.S. it’s totally okay to still have moments of pure panic, but that’s why it’s important to have a support network to lean on.