That’s an odd phrase, isn’t it? Wouldn’t all marketing be thoughtful?
Well, actually, no. Most B2B marketing solutions are what we call “push” marketing. They involve businesses attempting to use blunt force to shove a message into a target audience’s head. At ion Leap, we take a completely different approach. We prefer to create B2B marketing solutions that are so enticing that the prospect invites us in to continue the marketing conversation on their terms. It’s “pull” marketing.
Most B2B sales are highly-considered purchases
If you talk to people in business these days, you realize just how harried they are. Merely getting their attention has become a herculean task. If you look at many B2B ads in trade publications, you’ll see that most seem to think they’re both introducing their companies and closing a sale in the same ad. It’s completely unrealistic.
A better approach is to use typical outreach marketing to simply introduce a solution to their pain points; nothing more. And, if you’re like me, you’ve been at parties where you’ve met people then forgotten their name five minutes later. Best to introduce yourself again later.
By introducing yourself in several media with an integrated approach, you’ll be able to give a slightly wider understanding of your offering. For instance, an outbound email campaign to the same target list, in an ongoing and polite way, will give them a different view of your company. Don’t try to close the sale at all in these early introductions. Simply talk about your prospects’ pain points and lightly mention that your company can help; ever so lightly.
Eventually, when your prospect has time, they’ll dig deeper. Maybe they’ll click that link to your micro-site, where you will not attempt to close the sale. There they might spot a white paper they can print out and read 2 weeks later while traveling on a plane. Or maybe they’ll save one of your emails to send to a peer.
Sometime later, when they get around to really understanding the paint points that you’ve helped to clarify, they might be responsive to a phone call in which you do not attempt to close the sale.
There’s a time and place to close a B2B sale and you don’t get to decide when that is.
The web has given busy executives much more control over how they react to marketing ploys. Marketers who adjust their outreach accordingly will be doing advertising that looks very different. Their print will avoid asking for the sale. Their email marketing will be focused on thought leadership, more useful and far less annoying. Their direct mail will be much more impactful and less cluttered.
We recommend B2B marketing solutions that allow the prospect to dictate the terms of the relationship when they’re ready. Such marketing will:
- Give you added learning about the prospect’s habits, desired contact method, etc
- Avoid putting up road blocks with the prospect by respecting their time
- Get much more attention by focusing in on only one goal for the respective media
Let ion Leap help you market for considered purchases
We’re currently working with four different B2B marketers and coming up with solutions that carefully pull interested prospects into a well-thought-out sales funnel. If you’d like to discuss the advantages of “pull” marketing, contact ion Leap. But if you’re not ready to do that yet, we certainly understand. We’ll simply stay in touch from time to time, softly reminding you of your pain points, until you’re ready to move the conversation ahead a bit. No pressure. Maybe we’ll get a coffee sometime.
Isn’t “pull” marketing wonderful?