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2 Steps to more effective B2B advertising

If you are a B2B marketer, you already know that your customer’s purchase journey differs significantly from that of B2C buyers.

From the longer length of B2B sales cycles, to the higher number of decision makers involved, the B2B purchase path is fragmented and no longer starts with the sales rep. 

These differences should impact not just your marketing messaging, but other B2B advertising strategies—essential to executing effective data-driven campaigns.

Laying a solid foundation for successful B2B campaign execution starts with campaign planning that addresses B2B advertising’s unique challenges.

Here are two essential steps to building a solid foundation for better B2B advertising.

Step 1: Be prepared to engage accounts over long sales cycles to increase conversion 

Just like in B2C marketing, where the consumer (person who consumes content) remains constant throughout the buying cycle), in B2B an account (company that is either a customer or a prospect) remains constant in a specific buying cycle. 

B2B businesses are already aware that targeted Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is critical during long sales cycles. Successful B2B marketers execute against these targets by creating account-based audiences made of users (consumers) who work at these accounts.

Alignment with sales teams is critical to build effective audiences. It also encourages a healthy, long-term joint marketing and sales strategy and relationship. 

Once the audiences are created, they are activated to allow for cross-channel implementation across web, mobile, social and TV to achieve the best results for their marketing goals. 

This account-based approach drives high-quality prospects through the funnel giving marketers multiple touchpoints to keep their brand top of mind, while ensuring revenue and data flow into downstream systems such as sales, finance, etc.

Follow these easy strategies to leverage ABM for continued engagement during long sales cycles: 

  • Align with sales to develop an account list for sales outreach and opportunities 
  • Build a custom account list based on in-house business priorities and individuals to target 
  • Activate that audience across digital channels; monitor campaign response and sales activity 
  • Nurture individuals and accounts demonstrating interest and intent 
  • Categorize audiences to tailor content based on where they are in the funnel (e.g., “Content strategy X” for “Accounts” that are in “Advanced Buying”)

Step 2: Know your data types

There are many different categories of B2B targeting available to marketers. The key here is not to forget the buyer (e.g., C-Level) also is an individual who appears online as a consumer of content (e.g., photographer, golfer).

In other words, don’t hesitate to explore B2C data types to augment current marketing activities and then uniquely apply them to campaigns. Here are the data-type categories: 

Persona-based B2B data

Identifies professionals based on their characteristics, regardless of the specific company employing them. These segments can focus on a specific type of company or professionals within a targeted role. Persona-based targeting often reaches a broader audience and includes SMBs not always included in target account lists


Target professionals based on the size, age, revenue and industry of their employer. “I want to target people who work at companies with more than 1K employees.” 


Target professionals based on their function, title, seniority and decision-maker status. “I want to target HR decision makers.” 


Target professionals based on the trade shows they have previously attended and/or showed interest in. “I want to target companies who have attended or shown interest in major Mining and Energy tradeshows” 


Account-based B2B data 

As an important strategy for B2B marketers, account-based B2B data or ABM extends activities to the programmatic channel. Account-based audiences are built upon on a list of named accounts or through custom solutions to target unique criteria



Target employees based on a list of provided accounts. “I want to target finance execs at my top 2K accounts.” 


Target accounts based on past characteristics or behaviors likely to exhibit. “I want to target accounts on my list that are growing in revenue or spending on specific product categories.” 


Target employees based on the types of solutions their company previously purchased/installed. “I want to target companies that invested in ERP software in the past.” 


Last but not least, let’s discuss persona-based B2C data.

Often neglected is the use of B2C data to provide additional context around the end customer’s interests, location, demographic, etc.

Example: “I want to target golfers in the audience with the new brand campaign that features a PGA player.”

For B2B marketers knowing what data to utilize and then focusing on account-based strategies are the first steps in executing an effective campaign to turn decision makers into customers. 

To learn more about using B2B data to boost your campaign strategy, contact The Data Hotline today. 

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