It’s not enough to simply exist in the marketplace anymore; you need to make sure your target audience sees you as relevant to their needs.
In fact, a recent study from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute revealed that irrelevant information interferes with making decisions. And let’s be real, confused buyers aren’t buying. That’s why it’s crucial to ensure your messaging is spot-on and tailored to your audience’s needs.
To accomplish that, it’s essential to understand your clients, their needs, and how you can stay relevant to them. Casting too wide of a net can lead to untargeted messaging that is vague and irrelevant. The companies that can remain relevant—and make it clear to their buyers that they ARE relevant—are the companies that will succeed in the marketplace.
But how do you do that?
It’s simple: put your audience at the center of your messaging.
Get to know them, speak directly to them, and keep up with what’s happening in their world. But we can break it down into even more actionable steps:
- Put your audience at the center of your messaging.
- Speak directly to your target audience and give them specific examples of how your product or service can meet their needs.
- Keep up with popular culture, the economy, and the geopolitical world to stay informed about how your clients may be impacted.
- Use PR, influencer marketing, and user-generated content to show your brand’s relevance and credibility.
- Use SEO strategies to understand buyer intent and create targeted messaging that meets their needs.
5 Ways B2Bs Can Stay Relevant in 2023
1. Put your audience at the center of your messaging.
Knowing your audience is at the core of effective messaging.
If you want to create messaging that resonates with your target audience, you need to know them inside and out. This means digging deep and understanding who they are, what motivates them, and what their pain points are. By doing so, you can avoid vague and untargeted messaging that can confuse and distract potential buyers.
To get started, it’s essential to create detailed buyer personas that capture the essence of your ideal customer. What are their demographics? What challenges are they facing? What are their goals and aspirations? Once you clearly understand who your audience is, you can tailor your messaging to address their unique needs and concerns.
You can use tools like surveys, focus groups, and social media analytics to gather this information. Once you understand your audience well, use that knowledge to tailor your messaging. Speak to their specific pain points and offer solutions that are relevant to them. This will help you establish a connection with your audience and make your messaging more effective.
Related Reading: The Ultimate Guide to Buyer Personas
2. Don’t just speak to your audience; name them.
Are you struggling to make your messaging resonate with your target audience? The key may be as simple as giving them a name. Don’t just speak to your audience in general terms; get specific and name them. This means using their industry or job title in your ad copy, website, and case studies.
When you explicitly state who your product or service is for, it shows that you understand their needs and are directly addressing them. By doing so, you can eliminate any doubts in their minds and assure them that your product or service fits their needs.
When you name your audience, it catches their attention. It creates a connection and builds trust between your brand and potential customers.
A lot of our content at Zen Media is intended for B2B marketers, CMOs, or CEOs, and when we’re talking to them—whether through social media, paid ads, or in our video content—we often address them directly:
And you should do the same. If you’re selling a project management tool, for instance, don’t just say it’s for “busy professionals.” Instead, call out your audience by name and say it’s for “project managers in tech who want to automate task assignment.” This not only shows that you understand their specific pain points but also positions your product as the solution they’ve been looking for.
By using targeted language, you can catch their attention and communicate that your solution is tailored to their specific challenges and goals. So, don’t be afraid to name your audience in your marketing materials. It’s a simple yet effective way to connect with potential customers and show them that you’re the solution they’ve been looking for.
3. Keep your finger on the pulse of popular culture, the economy, and the geopolitical world.
Part of staying relevant in the B2B marketing sphere is understanding what your audience is going through. It’s not enough to simply understand your audience’s needs and problems—you also need to be aware of external impacts.
As we wander into a potential recession, you need to know whether your audience will be impacted, and if so, how does that change your messaging and offerings? Are you offering discounts to help ease the financial burden during these challenging times? Will your product help them recession-proof their business, saving time and money?
By staying informed about popular culture, the economy, and the geopolitical landscape, you can better understand your audience’s challenges and adjust your messaging accordingly. For example, if there’s a new technology trend that’s taking off, by being aware of this, you can offer solutions that incorporate this technology and position your brand as cutting-edge.
The key is ensuring that you’re staying informed and adapting your messaging to remain relevant. By doing so, you can demonstrate that you are not only knowledgeable about your audience’s needs but also the world around them and can provide solutions that address their evolving challenges.
4. Use PR, influencer marketing, and user-generated content to show your brand’s credibility.
PR, B2B influencer marketing, and UGC are all ways to show your audience that other people think you are relevant.
When other people endorse your product or service, it helps build credibility through social proof. And if the person or publication that is providing that social proof is well known and respected in your industry, their stamp of approval can help position you as a leader in your industry. When our peers, the people we look up to or follow—like subject-matter experts, thought leaders and influencers, and reputable publications all illustrate that something is relevant and valuable, we start to think so too.
To earn media, you must focus on building strong relationships with key influencers, journalists, and bloggers in your industry. By providing them with valuable insights, news, and stories, you can increase your chances of getting featured in their publications or social media posts.
The key here is that you must provide these contacts with relevant newsworthy stories. If the stories you are giving them are boring or won’t resonate with their readers or followers, you won’t “earn” their attention.
B2B PR and Strategic Comms professionals build strong relationships with the gatekeepers to reputable and top-tier publications, as well as with influencers, podcast hosts, thought leaders, and more. And on top of these relationships, they understand which stories work for which publications, how to take business news and tie it to current trending topics, and more. If you’re struggling to get media coverage, to resonate with influencers, or to get noticed by podcasters—finding a PR partner with expertise in your industry is key.
Related reading: Build a Successful B2B PR Strategy in 2023
Alternatively, you can create a social media campaign that encourages customers to share their experiences using your product or service, generating UGC and creating a buzz around your brand. UGC is a powerful way to earn media, showing real people using and loving your product or service.
Remember, earned media and UGC strategies all center around building relationships and cultivating trust with your audience. So, be sure to engage with your audience regularly and respond to feedback, whether it’s positive or negative. By leveraging the power of others’ endorsements, you can establish your brand as a leader in your industry and keep your audience engaged and loyal.
Related Reading: Why Consumers are Breaking Up with Your Brand
5. Understand your audience’s intentions with B2B SEO.
Connect your products to your audience’s needs by understanding your audience’s search intent. Using SEO strategies to analyze buyer intent is an effective way to gain insight into not just what your audience is searching for, but the why behind their search query as well.
A strong B2B SEO strategist works to identify the keywords you should target, but also the reason your buyers are searching for those keywords to begin with. To determine search intent, long-tail keywords, commonly searched questions, and keyword clusters are used to identify the specifics behind a search and what the intent might be. Knowing their search intent allows you to tailor content to that intent—making your content highly relevant.
For instance, if you work for a fintech, and your audience is searching for “online banking,” you’ll probably add some online-banking-focused blogs and social posts to your content calendar. But by tracking intent, rather than just keywords, you may identify that the intent behind searching for online banking is to find fintech platforms that allow for digital payment processing. While this is still tied to online banking, the goal of the search is actually to learn more about digital payment options and the companies that offer them. Having this clearer understanding will help you tailor content that ties their keywords to their intent, such as: “How digital payments are processed through our online banking platform.”
The more clearly you can track and understand the intent behind the search queries your website visitors use, the more effectively you’ll be able to tailor content to address their specific needs, questions, and curiosities. And the more relevant you will be.
If you can tie your brand to the thing they are looking for, you will automatically hold relevance in their mind. So take the time to analyze your audience’s search intent and use it to create content and messaging that speaks directly to their needs. By doing so, you’ll be able to connect with your target audience on a deeper level and build long-lasting relationships with your customers.
Related Reading: 8 Reasons to Implement Keyword Clusters in Your SEO Strategy
Relevance reaps revenue in 2023, so capitalize on every opportunity to prove to your audience that you deserve their attention and can solve the challenges that hold them back.
Still not sure how to do that? Reach out. We’d love to help.