The Rocket Science of B2B Demand: Capturing the Elusive 95% of Your Audience

James Rice

May 21, 2024 | 6 min read

Getting a rocket into orbit takes a ton of fuel—about 85% to 95% of it is burned just to break free of Earth’s gravity. Imagine you're at the helm of a marketing rocket. You've got a limited fuel supply and a clear target: reaching orbit. Here’s the kicker: B2B marketing works the same way. You're aiming to capture the hearts and minds of your audience, but a staggering 95% of them aren't ready to buy. If you’re only going after the 5% who are, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. Just like that rocket, you need to be strategic with your resources to break through the inertia and reach those distant prospects. You are going to burn the fuel, so make it count.

Understanding the Challenge

The Ehrenberg-Bass Institute's findings reveal a critical insight for B2B marketers: only 5% of your potential customers are actively considering a purchase. This means that the traditional short-term, high-intent keyword approach is leaving a vast majority of your audience untapped. Instead, it highlights the need for a strategic shift toward long-term engagement and brand building. Many B2B marketers fall into the trap of solely targeting those ready to convert (over reliance on intent signals, anyone?), but this myopic view can be detrimental in the long run. By neglecting the 95% who need more nurturing, you're essentially burning through your marketing fuel without ever reaching escape velocity.

Take Action

Expand Your Funnel Focus: Don't just target your audience on intent signals. Develop content to attach to different needs of the buyers. Embrace the non-linear orbit that is no longer a “customer journey”

Prioritize Creative: Make a generic ad and you will get generic visitors. Strong creative begins with understanding your buyer's needs and connecting with them emotionally.

Educational Content: Create and share content that educates your audience, helping them solve problems or understand industry trends. This positions your brand as a thought leader and keeps potential buyers engaged.

The Rocket Fuel of B2B Marketing: Investing in Long-Term Strategies

To reach more of your audience when they aren't yet ready to buy, B2B brands need to invest in strategies that build long-term brand equity. This involves moving away from purely transactional tactics and instead focusing on creating mental availability–making your brand top of mind when prospects are eventually ready to buy. Just as a rocket must sustain its journey with carefully measured fuel, your brand needs a sustained, strategic approach to engage potential customers over time.

Take Action

Consistent Messaging: Ensure your brand's value proposition is consistently communicated across all touchpoints. This builds recognition and trust over time.

Brand Building Initiatives: Invest in activities that enhance your brand's reputation, such as sponsoring industry events, publishing white papers, and engaging in PR efforts.

Customer Advocacy: Encourage satisfied customers to share their success stories and experiences with your brand, which can help build credibility and attract new prospects.

Creating Memorable Launches: Leveraging the Power of Video

Investing in high-quality, engaging video content is crucial for building a lasting presence in the minds of your potential customers.

In today's digital landscape, video has emerged as a dominant form of content. This surge presents a golden opportunity for B2B marketers. Connected TV (CTV) advertising, in particular, offers advanced targeting options that make it highly relevant for B2B marketing. Unlike traditional TV ads, CTV allows brands to reach specific business audiences with tailored messaging, enhancing the effectiveness of their campaigns. With LinkedIn’s recent offering of video advertising using B2B audience criteria, this is having a massive impact. The magic happens when your video advertising moves your brand from laptop to living room.

Take Action

Diverse Video Content: Create a variety of video content types, such as explainer videos, product demos, customer testimonials, and industry insights.

Utilize CTV: Take advantage of Connected TV's targeting capabilities to reach specific segments of your B2B audience with personalized video ads.

Back Away from High Intent: Shift your search ad budget (remember, it only serves to convert 5%) to awareness

Engaging the Elusive 95%: Telling a Great Story to Break Through the Noise

In a crowded B2B market, the ability to tell a compelling story can set your brand apart. Storytelling is not just a buzzword; it's a powerful tool for capturing and retaining your audience's attention. A great story resonates on an emotional level, making your brand more relatable and memorable.

To craft a powerful narrative, focus on authenticity, relatability, and emotional resonance. Your story should align with your brand values and mission, creating a cohesive and compelling message across all content formats. Blogs, podcasts, webinars, and other forms of content should all contribute to a unified narrative that builds trust and engagement over time. Great storytelling is your ticket to standing out in the noisy B2B market. Invest in developing a strong narrative that resonates with your audience and consistently communicates your brand's unique value.

Take Action

Identify Your Core Message: Start by defining the core message you want to convey. This should reflect your brand's mission, values, and the unique value you offer to customers.

Create a Story Arc: Develop a clear story arc that includes a beginning, middle, and end. Introduce a challenge, show how it can change, and conclude with a resolution that highlights your brand's role.

Share Commercial Insights: Incorporate customer stories and real business uses to illustrate impact and make your narrative more compelling.

Multichannel Storytelling: Ensure your story is told consistently across different formats and channels, from blog posts and videos to social media and email campaigns.

Engage Emotionally: Aim to connect with your audience on an emotional level. Use relatable scenarios, compelling visuals, and authentic voices to make your story resonate.

Reaching Orbit

Just as a rocket requires immense fuel to reach orbit, capturing the elusive 95% of your B2B audience demands a strategic and sustained effort. By investing in top-of-funnel strategies as much as bottom-funnel, leveraging the power of video, and telling a great story, your brand can build mental availability with memorable moments and be in the consideration set before intent signals appear.

Read more about the impact of video advertising for B2B

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