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  1. 1. SEVEN STRATEGIES FOR INCREASING PROFITS THROUGH BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS INTERNET MARKETING Susan K. Jones, Professor of Marketing Ferris State University Presenting at the Research Summit Direct Marketing Educational Foundation San Diego, CA October 16-17, 2009
  2. 2. Background: Book Development for Class and Certificate at Ferris State University
  3. 3. Question: How do you teach B2B? <ul><li>Dedicated Classes? </li></ul><ul><li>Integration? </li></ul><ul><li>Guest Speakers? </li></ul><ul><li>Cases and Case Histories? </li></ul><ul><li>Class Projects? </li></ul><ul><li>Other? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Challenging Economic Times Bode Well for Growth of Online B2B Marketing <ul><li>E-mail is the most cost-effective medium ever devised – ROI of $40.00 plus per dollar invested per the DMA and a marketing cost per order of $7.00 per Email Labs </li></ul><ul><li>Online marketing is measurable – leads, orders, long-term value can all be calculated to the penny </li></ul><ul><li>B2B Social Networking generally costs time rather than money </li></ul><ul><li>Sponsored search and SEO are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Measurable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost-effective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Adjustable on the fly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Affordable for small business </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. The recession hastens what’s probably inevitable for many narrow niche B2B trade publications <ul><li>In our field… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>DM News now publishes biweekly instead of 50x yearly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Direct and Promo no longer exist as print publications http://www.penton.com/News/PentonMediatoLaunchChiefMarketerMagazine.aspx </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They’re now folded into Chief Marketer, which is available </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Free to those who fit its controlled circulation parameters </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>For $49.95 a year if you want it in print </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>All these publications offer a host of online newsletters and downloadable resources </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. In General…B2B Print Pages are down
  7. 7. While B2B marketers are going online…
  8. 8. Online Lead Generation is Cost-Effective and Accountable <ul><li>Cost of a B2B sales call “has soared over $500” per B2B expert John Coe </li></ul><ul><li>Average B2B sale may require 4-5 sales calls </li></ul><ul><li>If direct/interactive marketing can open the door more efficiently, that cost can be controlled. Examples -- </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use variable data printing to lead prospects to a customized, value-added web site for their response </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gain leads through an offer with “something in it for them” like an online newsletter </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Trade Shows are Shrinking and/or Going Virtual – again the economy hastens the trend. Example: <ul><li>In our field… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Direct Marketing Association Announces second round of cutbacks aimed at decreasing dependence on face-to-face trade shows and increasing online resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.audiencedevelopment.com/2009/dma+makes+second+round+employee+cuts </li></ul></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Trade Shows are Shrinking and/or Going Virtual <ul><li>The ultimate is a “Second Life”-type trade show experience such as http://www.6connex.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Only about one-third of interested people actually attend a show, so virtual shows [can potentially] reach 66-70% of the people who don't actually attend: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-- Dr Allen Konapacki, President, INCOMM Center for Trade Show Research, Chicago, USA </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Corporate Training Budgets fall…making free or inexpensive Internet Events attractive <ul><li>http://www.accountingnet.com/x63914.xml </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.astd.org/TD/Special/0808_Steady_Under_Pressure.htm </li></ul><ul><li>These articles and many more point to coping mechanisms including </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Looking outside the corporation for training options </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online options </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Marketers see integration of online marketing as a challenge
  13. 13. Well-Conceived B2B Internet Marketing is Rooted in the Principles of DM <ul><li>Like Direct Marketing – B2B Internet Marketing… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can be controlled, tested, tracked, analyzed, refined and measured </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Delivers value by generating leads and orders you can count </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Yet B2B Internet Marketing does more </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Now B2B marketers can actually close the loop and complete the marketing and sales cycle at one time, in one place, online. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>That makes it truly accountable marketing </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Seven Proven Strategies for B2B Internet Marketing <ul><li>1. Generating and qualifying leads with the Internet. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Using Internet events to promote products and services. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Executing e-fulfillment. </li></ul><ul><li>4. Building customer relationships with the Internet. </li></ul><ul><li>5. Using or establishing business communities and exchanges. </li></ul><ul><li>6. Using the Internet to create and manage partner programs. </li></ul><ul><li>7. Selling with the Internet </li></ul>
  15. 15. Generating and Qualifying Leads with the Internet -- The heart of most B2B marketing programs <ul><ul><li>Integrate the Internet with direct mail and telemarketing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web Response Forms/Landing Pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>www.yourwebsite.com/promoidentifier </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>XM Pie web site has examples including responses/ROI </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The Snackinar example on next slides </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 17. Snackinar Personalized Landing Page
  17. 18. Snackinar Web Response Form
  18. 19. Generating and Qualifying Leads with Online Advertising – a couple of tips <ul><ul><li>B2B Marketers should consider testing e-newsletter sponsorships versus traditional banner ads. Why? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletter ad looks just like a banner or button </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Most newsletters limit sponsors to one or a few per issue </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tend to pull a higher click-through rate and have higher conversion than traditional banners </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>More likely to be read because it’s with editorial material very relevant to recipient </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletters in narrow niches strategically and cost-effectively define your audience </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>B2B Marketers should try placing banners for their products, services and events on their own web sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Integrate the look/feel of the banner with current ad campaign to supplement landing pages </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>See Cisco example (next slide) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  19. 21. Generating and Qualifying Leads via E-mail -- Examples <ul><ul><li>Typical Uses of B2B E-mail for lead generation and cultivation (cutting down on phone, fax, postal mail) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Customer and Prospect Communications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Follow-ups </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Major Announcements and Alerts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>E-mail and Online Surveys </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>E-mail Discussion Groups </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A B2B e-newsletter offers value for the recipient and gains leads for the marketer to cultivate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If material is newsworthy and relevant (not merely selling products and services) prospects may be willing to receive it as often as 5x a week </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletters boost credibility and authority for B2B firms </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletters keep marketers top-of-mind for prospects without being overly pushy </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>See eMarketer example, next slide </li></ul></ul></ul>
  20. 23. Using Internet Events to Promote Products and Services <ul><li>Nightmare logistics – travel, hotels and venues, speakers, weather, traffic </li></ul><ul><li>Substantial investment </li></ul><ul><li>Quality control challenges </li></ul><ul><li>No-show rates of 50-60% for free seminars offered at a specific time and place </li></ul><ul><li>Minimal logistics – everyone “meets” at a URL or attends on demand </li></ul><ul><li>Much lower investment </li></ul><ul><li>Much more quality control </li></ul><ul><li>Attendees invest only an hour or so; may attend as a group; senior execs may attend; on-demand feature </li></ul><ul><li>Costly and frustrating problems with face-to-face events… </li></ul><ul><li>… Can often be overcome with Internet-based events </li></ul>
  21. 24. Using Internet Events to Promote Products and Services <ul><li>The Internet also can be used to promote and enhance traditional marketing events </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Snackinar Example on previous slides </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>YouTube Videos – example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nht1tYY6lsw </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs and Groups on Social Networking Sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Create a group to “follow” your event </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>List those already signed up to attend and provide easy methods for forwarding information about the event </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 25. Executing e-Fulfillment <ul><li>Use the Internet to qualify prospects and instantly fulfill their requests for information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Saves money and time over traditional fulfillment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PDFs make e-Fulfillment easy and universal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Updating is easy and fast (no more outdated brochures) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Web facilitates individualization of online fulfillment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online demos and trials can offer a taste of an application that times out unless purchased </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A smaller company that does this well: Advantage Engineering </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.advantageengineering.com/literature/literature.php </li></ul></ul>
  23. 26. Building Customer Relationships with the Internet Example: Dell’s “My Way”
  24. 27. Building Customer Relationships With the Internet – Some Pointers <ul><li>Treat Customers Like Prospects (Don’t take them for granted) </li></ul><ul><li>Ask Customers What They Want – And Give it to Them (Based on their own expressed needs) </li></ul><ul><li>Explore New and Innovative Ways to Encourage and Reward Customers (Online access to special information or an Extranet) </li></ul><ul><li>Treat Customer Classes Appropriately/Differently (Appropriate incentives and rewards) </li></ul><ul><li>Make One-to-One Fun (Dell’s sports/horoscopes, etc.) </li></ul>
  25. 28. Offer a Customer Extranet to Best Customers for applications such as… <ul><li>Password-protected access for your customers’ employees at different levels of authority </li></ul><ul><li>Inventory control and lists of past purchases </li></ul><ul><li>Real-time collaborative work space online </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to order samples </li></ul><ul><li>White papers and other materials available only to best customers </li></ul><ul><li>See Steelcase example on next slide </li></ul>
  26. 30. Business Communities and Exchanges -- Examples <ul><li>Vortals (Vertical Portals) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PlasticsNet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>IndustryGate (Greek Industrial Site) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Business.com </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Auctions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>eBay Business Shop </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>DoveBid </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Business Communities and Exchanges – just a couple among many </li></ul><ul><ul><li>LinkedIn (not hard sell – a social network for business) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ChemConnect (a 24/7/365 global trading network) </li></ul></ul>
  27. 31. Creating and Managing Partner Programs -- Examples
  28. 32. Selling on the Internet – Learn from the Best: B2B Magazine’s 10 Great Web Sites <ul><li>Adobe </li></ul><ul><li>Cisco Systems </li></ul><ul><li>Formway Furniture </li></ul><ul><li>InFocus Corp. </li></ul><ul><li>IT Toolbox </li></ul><ul><li>Johns Manville </li></ul><ul><li>Tech Smith Corp. </li></ul><ul><li>Suni Imaging ThomasNet </li></ul><ul><li>USPS </li></ul>
  29. 33. SEVEN STRATEGIES FOR INCREASING PROFITS THROUGH BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS INTERNET MARKETING Susan K. Jones, Professor of Marketing Ferris State University Questions? Ideas? Great Thoughts? I’m at [email_address] or [email_address] (616) 458-0305 (home office) or (231-591-2468 (Ferris State) Or look for me on LinkedIn/Facebook/Twitter (@sjones9200)