B2B Marketing Strategy to Survive in This Slowdown
YRSK | Published: 18-01-21
As a marketing company we aim to maintain the flow of revenue. For our clients and for ourselves. In crisis the first thing that dries up is money and primary target for marketing in such times is keeping the flow.
Building Cash Inflow
Improve the bonding with your Customers
Every business starts with the customers. Every business survives on them. Your first weapon against slowdown is doubling your attention on your customers. Offer solutions to even their smallest complaints. It is not easy to listen and find solutions. Instantly. More so, when your team will be scattered, working from home. Ask for individual solutions, gather them together and find the best among them. This is a tested process of finding solutions in crisis. Here it is the only one you have. Use it.
Make the Value in your Service visible
Once you know, you are fine from your customers’ point, it is time for internal reflection. Evaluate. Customer wise. The value you add to their business. Again repeat the team process.Ask for individual feedback from your team on the values you build for your customers, seek opinion from your coworkers. That will open up multiple perspectives. And then, collect them, rinse them to make your final list for each customer. Always make the final value list a mixture of tangible and intangible. And keep communicating them to your customers. Repeatedly. Establish your necessity to the customer. Prove, you make difference to their business. And always try to take your relations with your customers beyond professional. The second stage of professional respect. Being invited to be personal.
Create new channels of customer acquisition
This was the most obvious.Then it is time to spread wings. Search for new customers. When you are locked down by a contagious disease, face to face interactions reduce. Build your digital. Take this opportunity to push digital ahead. And create a newer channel of customer acquisition. You create two things. A new set of customers, acquired without hard selling and a new channel to reach them and make them reach you. Digital, once mastered, is very pocket friendly. A low cost, efficient way of crossing geographic limitations and grow exponentially.
Do not undercut the price
It is also a good time to introduce tele-calling to your marketing. You avoid face to face, though you communicate your expertise. Please understand, your back is at the wall. You are fighting a sizeable competition. Do not compromise on price. And quality. It is natural to be tempted to reduce cost for competition. You are asking for longer survival time. If you reduce your inflow, how can you do that? There is also a perceived quality associated with you. With drop in price that perceived quality also drops. Quality is not a differentiation. It is a given. For the level of customers you seek, it is their default need. Till the last day, you need to maintain that. In your product, in the mind of your customer.
Reach out to your network
Call your professional network. There will be plenty of people whom you know. A salesperson who changed industry, the marketing lady who delegated her day to day work to plan and strategize in the new company, a chance HR person, the upwardly ex colleague, they all are there. Keep searching and reaching out to them. Ping them on LinkedIn. May be the new client is a phone call away. And everybody loves to help a sweet person in need. Be that.
Limit your cash outflow
Innovate ways to reduce cost
This is your cash inflow. Optimizing your client acquisition. There is also cash outflow. The biggest one is overhead cost, (inventory is a part of your business, in times it often is an asset). As most of your employees are working from home, you will have plenty of corners to cut. Electricity, internet charges. Opt for the reduced plan. Even if possible, make your calculations. Opt for a smaller establishment. Reduce your real estate costs. In a big city it draws lot of blood. Eliminate the drawing. And then there are your vendors. Explain your tight cash position. Pay partials in repeated intervals rather than full payment.
Dissect all outflows
Some of your vendors will also be willing to renegotiate for continued business. Already work from home is a blessing where costs are concerned. Search for cheaper plans, your software, your tools, all should have a cost cutting option, take it. Use them to the maximum. May be you will miss out on a few things, learn to innovate to compensate. Avoid outright purchases. It is better if rent is available. Look at everything from the cost perspective. You will find a way to reduce cost.
Innovate. Create marked differentiation. You are not another competition. Your product and service have unique identity. Accentuate that identity. With outstanding value to every customer. Plank on your innovation to build this differentiation. Every aspect can be made unique. Use your innovation and shout about it at every chance. You win competition. You win the battle of customers.
Emphasise, stand, support your team
One of the most critical aspect that you may miss when your people work from home. It is fine. Social distancing is the need of the hour. But do not let that distancing effect your teamwork. Find suitable technologies. Find the easiest way to reach fast. Find tools for effortless communication. It is important. Your people make your first identity. They build your customer relation, they build your digital, they build your brand. Be honest with them, even when the news is bad, highly damaging. Sell your crisis to them, but sell honestly. They are the ones to take you through this recession. Trust them.