• Elaine Keep

5 minute strategies for b2b marketing - email marketing

Updated: Nov 16, 2021

Looking for strategies for b2b marketing that aren't going to give you a lot of fluff and jargon about 'engagement metrics?' You're in the right place!

Today we are taking a look at b2b email marketing, a real staple of the b2b armoury but one area where b2b marketing professionals tend to all get stuck in the same trap.

Here's why a great b2b marketing strategy still involves email

- Email might well be dead if you are selling TikTok dance routines to 12 year olds, or something like that, but if your customers work, especially in an office, they use email nearly exclusively for hours at a time

-In any business, you want to buy things. You can always improve your business, and you can always impress a boss. That means that things have a good chance of being purchased, eventually, or you know someone who will want a recommendation. B2B is a nice pool to fish from.

- Email is actually pretty 'safe' as a channel for mucking up, which every marketer does. Every week, we send to various databases, and we send promotional, paid for souls emails as well from one of our news outlet businesses. An unsubscribe rate can be well under 1% of a HUGE database. In terms of risk, it's low. People may lazily skip some emails, but they rarely unsubscribe, and tend to come back around. This is a long game.

-Its accessibility, ease of application and creation and potential for abuse is why email marketing can be seen as an area that has been really butchered.

What's wrong with your strategy when it comes to b2b email marketing?

Okay, so the common issues with b2b email marketing are as follows....

1) The volume - too much noise, not enough content. The email function seems more discreet than social media. We would baulk at putting out a facebook post saying 'BUY OUR STUFF' which we know would get ignored or flamed. We then apply the same logic of sending this message, directly to email. Your email database of interested people is a bit like knee joints - you get one to last a lifetime, so don't apply too much pressure.

2) Trying b2c hacks on a b2b stage. In b2b there aren't any sales or new things as often as B2C so we try to drum up a connection to cyber Monday or Halloween. Let's just stop. You don't need an excuse to check in, you aren't grandma.

3) You lead when you have nothing to say. There has been a LOT of talk about thought leadership, and we will come back to this in a post. However, your sales manager Jeremy is not really a thought leader if his thoughts are 'money good, buy stuff' that isn't cutting it. If you don't have a natural leader and spokesperson, this isn't the long term route for you. A company is not a thought leader - a human is. With a face, and a Twitter bio and an event presence.

3) Following the crowd with a benchmark you can't reach. This happens all the time in b2b marketing, and emails have gone from simple messages through to hyper designed HTML dreamscapes with gifs, animations and videos. That's not bad - but it can be a dangerous precedent to set yourself and to park your own benchmark at and distracts you from ROI.

4) (Harry Potter and the) Never Ending drip email sequences. Was it Yoda who said 'many emails, no content worth reading' - or was it Ghandi?

Either way, staring down the barrel of a 20 sequence email drip function is depressing. Do you like these emails?

The last 3 start to sound desperate, pleading, badgering, coaxing. Plucking the number before creating a sequence is grim. Plus, with Apple changing how it handles open rates, you might start firing them off to people at all the wrong times. Unless your are IBM or Google, perhaps try and master DIY first.

5) The subject lines are cover up jobs

More often than not, a b2b email marketing subject line will try and disguise what is an email that could have been skipped.

Picture the scene - you have a genuinely useful eBook to pass on.

  • "Get your eBook - includes forward from *EXPERT NAME + Template Cheat Sheet'

or a new release....

  • Resource182 saves 2 admin hours every.single. day! Watch this.

And now if you are just promoting you as an entity

  • 'Still wasting time on paperwork? It's 2022!'

The second example isn't bad - it just isn't as compelling because there is less of a hook.

You need your b2b email marketing to be written, designed and delivered by a professional.

Let us create them and guide you on the b2b2 strategy to turn email away from being an 'email blast' into a channel that you carefully treasure and nurture for years to come.

You know it makes sense.

About us

Your Marketing Managed bridges the gap between using a marketing freelancer specialising in one niche, and a marketing agency with expensive rates that might not execute on every idea.

It's a unique hybrid freelance/agency model - specifically for b2b - but that's a mouthful - so the name Your Marketing Managed fits the bill nicely.

Created from the concept of offering marketing agency services without London marketing agency prices, Your Marketing Managed offer b2b marketing strategy, which includes website copywriting services, blogging services, content copywriting, b2b email marketing and general 'b2b marketing / freelance marketing tasks in everything from traditional, digital and events.

You get the perks of the rates similar to a freelancer with the multiple skills and strengths associated with a marketing agency.

We charge on a project basis or a day rate, with lightweight contracts to suit both parties.

Your Marketing Managed was founded in 2017 and is run by Elaine Keep, a previous head of marketing for PLC and SME businesses in the areas of eCommerce, software and SaaS. Elaine is also the editor at the Incentive Marketing Association and Incentive&Motivation and a member of Wiin (Women In Incentives Network.

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