Connecting with B2B customers through email and building relationships with them is more complicated than marketing to consumers. But there are ways to make email a more effective B2B marketing tool.

Gloria Kopp, writer and e-learning consultant, Paper Fellows

As a B2B company or e-commerce organization, the way you use many of the tried and tested marketing tactics, such as content marketing and email workflows, is slightly different from what you would typically use to reach B2C customers. You’ll face certain challenges and obstacles that you’ll need to overcome.

For example, targeting business customers with an email marketing campaign means you need to be fully aware of your reader and their requirements, because they may only browse through your email quickly before returning to work. As a B2B company, it’s important that you maximise the opportunities your email marketing campaign provides you to maximize your lead generation rate.

Here are five ideas you can use to start taking your business to a new level of success.

1—A Welcome Email

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When businesses find your website, they may want to sign up to your mailing list, so they can stay up to date with what you’ve got to offer. When somebody signs up, the first thing they need and expect is a “welcome email.”

This is, of course, basically an email that says hello, thank you for signing up and lists out what the user can do next and what they can expect from you. But it’s also a perfect opportunity for you to sell your business to your readers, letting them know what products and services you offer, and ensure they have everything they need to explore your business fully.

2—A New Customer Journey Workflow

If you’ve sent out your welcome email but haven’t yet received any activity from the lead, your targeted customers may be unsure of what they need to do next. You can alleviate this problem by creating a set of new customer emails that map their journey from a lead into a paying customer.

For example, let’s say that a customer signed up two weeks ago but has still not interacted with your business. You could send them an email titled “What you can do next!” and list sections of your business which they can explore to make a purchase. This is also a great opportunity to share some of your high-performing content posts and to really see what your users want to engage with within your business.

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Alternatively, you could ask your reader to get in touch with your customer service team or sales rep, so they can ask about what they are looking for and how you can help. Whatever you choose, a clear call to action is essential. You could also attach a discount code or voucher to entice the reader to start spending.

3—A Sales Workflow

Over time, you’ll be able to collect a lot of information on your individual customers, and you’ll be able to see what content and products they are interested in.

Using automated workflows, you’ll be able to pass all the information you have on these customers, such as the information on their browsing habits and their social media profiles, to one of your sales reps which will be able to give that customer a personalised sales experience.

For example, in this situation, we’ll say that you’re a B2B business that sells stationary and other office supplies to other businesses. If the only products that one client is purchasing are pens and printer ink, and they happen to make the same purchase every two months, you can pass this information onto your sales reps to generate personalized emails suggesting the customer set up a recurring automated purchase.

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Alternatively, you could try creating customized bundles, so the customer could still order their pens and printer ink, but also receive packs of office paper for a discounted price. Get creative with your sales workflow ideas, and you’ll be able to really maximise your sales with your existing customers. You can edit these emails for maximum impact using business editing tools like State of writing or Grammarix.

4—A Re-Engagement Workflow

If you’ve got an email contact that has remained inactive for some time, you may want to use a workflow to rekindle that relationship. These emails can be triggered after a certain amount of time and work best by sending discount codes, incentives or coupons for money off their next order. What’s important with these emails is grabbing your customers’ attention, so they remember your business and want to engage with you.

Check out this example sent via Hubspot from Lowe’s, a home improvement retail chain and e-commerce site that sells to businesses and consumers:

As you can see, they are engaging their customers by making it very clear that things have changed within their business, a great way to get people excited about checking out your website.

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You can also see the most eye-catching feature that 5 million people are now using the service, another great way to entice people back to see why so many people are using the website. This is a common psychology technique known as FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) where customers will want to be involved, simply because so many other people are.

You’ll also find all the common and essential email elements such as the clear call to action and links to social media platforms, making it easy for the user to engage with the company.

5—An Abandoned Shopping Cart Workflow

Sometimes, you’ll be so close to making a sale, and the customer will have added products to their basket or cart but then left it. This is a prime opportunity to address what went wrong by sending an email reminding them that they have items pending.

Since retailers tend to have more experience in this area, let’s take a look at this example of an abandoned shopping cart email sent through the Shopify platform by Fab, an online home furniture merchant based in New York:

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Fab has put a lot of effort into their cart abandonment email and has designed it to look like the shopping pages on their website, immediately reconnecting the user to Fab’s business.

Of course, the main emphasis of this email is the fact that a user must have gone onto the website during a sale, added a bed to their shopping basket and then left for whatever reason. This email works well because it notifies the customer that the item is still on sale, making it far more likely that they’ll complete their purchase.

There is also a clear and eye-catching call-to-action button, which makes the purchase as easy as possible, and links to customer service pages in case the customer has questions.

Get Creative

There are a ton of options available to you when it comes to setting up automated email workflows. Remember to get creative and think outside the box on how best to use these traditional workflow methods to match your business, so your customers have the best experience.

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Gloria Kopp is a web content writer and an e-learning consultant at Paper Fellows. She operates the Studydemic blog and is a regular contributor to such websites as The Tab, Microsoft and Ukwritings. Follow her Twitter @gloria_kopp.

 

 

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