While the main goal of building trust and persuading customers to interact with a brand remains the same, modern B2B PR goes a lot further than this. Our newest member of the High-Vis hub, Chloe, discusses five key insights into B2B communications that she’s picked up during her first month.
Immerse yourself in the sector
Nowadays, PRs are embedded in the brand, so it’s crucial they know the sector inside out. It goes without saying that if you’re talking to people who know their stuff, then you should too. This can involve getting to grips with technical information and having in-depth knowledge of an industry – or rather industries. Take the High Vis team for example: we can tell you everything you need to know about cement one minute and high-tech innovations in drainage solutions the next!
Be genuine experts
Much of your audience will have been in the industry for most, if not all, their working career. With this in mind they’re going to see right through copy that isn’t insightful or thought-provoking. Keeping on top of industry news and the hot topics is the best way to learn how to speak their language fluently. Likewise, don’t overlook the fountain of knowledge that is your client – they’re the real experts here and success is collaborative, so just pick up the phone when you hit a brick wall.
Content creation goes much further than drafting a press release and patting yourselves on the back when the coverage flows in. Nowadays, a strategic approach to reaching your audience is crucial. Take Dietrich’s PESO model for example – from social media and podcasts to whitepapers and charity partnerships – modern PR is all about developing the perfect mix of paid, earned, owned and shared content to reach the end goal.
Remember that people buy people
Yes, ultimately you’re selling a product or service but you’re not going to get very far if you’re not engaging your client’s customers. We have to think about the wider picture and visualise what impact this will have on someone’s life. The content might be highly technical but remember there’s still a human being reading it, so finding the personal element is key. Make the benefits tangible to them – if it’s a new product, it’s been developed for a reason and that’s what people are buying.
Use engaging content
B2B buyers are typically 57% of the way to a buying decision before actively engaging with sales (CEB). This highlights the importance for engaging content, and plain old copy isn’t going to keep your audience coming back for more. You must use different forms of content to put an interesting spin on a message. Take our work with Gibbs and Dandy – we understood that generic content wouldn’t cut the mustard when it came to a campaign to support a new branch opening. That’s why we helped develop The Daily Nail, a fun and light-hearted newspaper, which proved a successful way of getting key messages across.
For success in B2B comms, it’s clear we must act as an extension of our clients’ knowledge and expertise to communicate their key messages effectively. It’s on us to build their customer’s trust by harnessing multiple channels in engaging and informative ways. And we can only do this if we know our industries, and their audience, inside-out.