According to a report by Forrester, 68% of B2B customers prefer to research independently online. Of course, conversations, taking the potential client out for lunch are still sometimes great ways to acquire new customers. However, they can be too time-consuming.
Are you still using the old ways for your marketing? If yes, then maybe it's a good idea to switch to something new already. You could begin by implementing these new business growth strategies in 2019.
Focus on a specific market segment
Remember how McDonald's started? They just opened one restaurant in only one location and then expanded to the US and later to the whole world. The idea is that it's key to start small and understand your market before you make any efforts towards expanding.
If your business is up and running now, then you are a step forward already. Take some time to understand the market trends and, most importantly, your customers. This will help you expand in the right direction.
As a B2C company, you might want to focus on your users' demographics, lifestyle, interests or other aspects. However, with B2B, things are a bit different. Your marketing efforts should be focused on specific B2B companies. Knowing how those companies operate, what are their goals, and how they usually achieve them can help you seal the deal.
Thus, the more information you gather, the easier it will be for you to expand.
Come up with a personalized action plan
A strategy is nothing without an action plan. Once you know what your objectives are in terms of business growth, you can jump into making the plan.
How to come up with the action plan?
Turn around. There is data everywhere. There is so much data that people cannot even collect and analyze it properly. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, various blogs contain a lot of data about your potential customers. If you have enough resources, you could use AI-powered technologies to find trends in the data, otherwise you could merely monitor all these data channels manually.
Once you know the specifics of each channel and how each of them works for your target market, you can create separate action plans for:
- Your content strategy
- Social media presence
- Online presence in general (website, blog, chatbots, and messengers)
- Email marketing strategy
Don't underestimate the power of analytics
You won't know what works and what doesn't unless you use analytics tools. If you have got an online store on Shopify, you can use its analytics tool to track your store's recent activity, gain insights into your visitors, and analyze your store's transactions. The paid plans can provide you with more resources.
Following are some more analytics tools that can help:
One of the best free website analytics tools any business owner should have to track and analyze data. You get to see which pages are getting more traffic, how many daily, weekly, or monthly visitors you are getting organically or through social media or paid ads and much more.
This one uses a Heatmap technology to show you what your site visitors are doing on your website. It basically shows you where people are moving their mouse and where they click. This kind of tracking will help you analyze visitor behavior and improve your website accordingly in order to engage more visitors.
There are some other analytics tools out there too, such as Kissmetrics, Hotjar, and others. You can check them out and include a few in your growth strategy.
Optimize your website, don't wait for the magic to happen
Like in the years before, website optimization for search engines or the well-known SEO is still there. You cannot just have a website in place and expect the online sales to skyrocket or your customers to be flowing to you out of the blue.
So, besides having a great website which is visually eye-warming and easy to navigate is not enough. The base of your online marketing efforts should be a robust SEO-optimized website. This means:
Website localization and translation
If you are planning to go global and grow your business, then it would be great to localize your website content for various international audiences. GTranslate is a tool that helps not only translate your website pages but also localize them for different markets. You can easily customize the URLs and the visuals to fit the context.
Great UX and mobile-friendliness
72% of people want mobile-friendly websites, and 94% of people judge websites on responsive web design. So, make sure that your website looks good not only on desktop devices but also on mobile.
Quality and up-to-date content
Your website and blog content should be based on these two - quality and timeliness. No one needs outdated statistics or ideas, and no one needs texts with grammatical errors inside.
There are other SEO metrics you might want to measure to improve your website's performance. You can perform monthly SEO audits to find out potential errors and pain points. SEMrush and Woorank are great tools to use for website audit.
Summing up and a bonus tip: turn innovation into a daily activity
Your growth strategy for 2019 should include a separate section about innovation. You need to establish an experiment-driven culture in your company to be able to innovate and direct your business to the right path. There are no 100% surefire ways of growing a business. You need to have the gut and the stamina to take risks and break boundaries.
Bring the change that no one expects you to bring!