4 Counter-Intuitive Ways to Get Tech Buyers to Buy From You
“Nobody ever read one eBook and went on to buy a $50,000 a year software solution.“
Especially not after a templated, generic email face-slap asking them to jump on a call.
Technology buying is a long game. When an IT manager purchases a new cloud computing solution, that need is gone. They’re out-of-market and won’t buy again for 6 – 24 months.
These out-of-market buyers make up 95% of audiences and have more information than they can already process at their fingertips.
That’s why building pipeline is about showing up early and earning attention. There are 4 surprising (but proven) ways to do it:
1. Take creative risks (there’s nothing more expensive than boring creative)
The social platforms we once loved (e.g. Instagram) are becoming stuffed full of ads. If you stop scrolling mindlessly and start analysing the type of ads out there, you’ll notice that 95% of them are horrifyingly similar.
I think it’s because being creative – actually putting something original that we care about out into the wild – is really scary. So we tend to cling to ‘best practices’ and do what every other B2B marketer is doing so that we don’t fall behind or make a fool of ourselves.
But the end result won’t win you any awards. In fact, a general lack of creativity in B2B marketing is making 75% of B2B ads invisible.
When the fear of creative failure takes hold of me, I’ve got this quote pinned up on my corkboard that always helps me plod on past the fear and into my creative zone:
“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect).“
2. Let your prospects find you when they need you
Your ads can deliver a life-changing message to the perfect prospect, but if it isn’t at the right time – if they’re not ready – you’ve just wasted a chunk of your ad spend.
Kira Mondrus, SVP of Global Marketing at Tricentis, puts it nice and plainly: “You could be running a promotion on a tire sale, but if somebody doesn’t have a flat tire, they have absolutely no reason to engage with you for your discount tires,”
The only solution here is to keep prospects consistently engaged with great content and ongoing messaging so they can find you when they need you. The end result that this perpetual demand generation has on your pipeline acceleration is extraordinary. You can see the results and get a step-by-step breakdown of how to do this here.
3. Create ongoing value through content without asking for sales in return (which they’re not able to give)
There’s not really a normal way to ‘do’ B2B social media marketing. Some people love to promote their blog posts. Some people do the whole ‘meme’ thing that brings comedic relief to the other posts that only speak about how amazing their product is. And some people create little thought snippets with no call to action. They teach their audience something right there, on the spot. Here’s a real-life example that formed the foundation of the post you’re reading right now.
But the people teaching their audiences something without asking for anything in return – called zero-click content – are consistently performing better. They’re not asking for sales. But in the long-term, this strategy gets you more sales.
Messy, surprising world we live in, isn’t it?
4. Connect your brand to a specific problem or aspiration your audience has
See this Coke ad below? See enough of this messaging and your brain will connect a cool, bubbly coke with summer.
B2B brands do this just as well.
After enough creative campaigns like this, our brains think of Slack as the solution to the tyranny of overflowing inboxes.
If your messaging consistently pushes on the same problem – or the same aspiration –in a way that emotionally connects to your audience then you’ll be the brand that your buyers back in their next buying cycle.
Because your demand generation has built the connection that makes demand capture easier, faster, and more profitable.
We’ve learnt a lot working with our clients over the years but when looking at journeys that actually result in pipeline, there’s one lesson that sticks out:
Don’t force in-market buyers to buy from you.
Do marketing well and they’ll come to you.