Marketing for B2B: Only 5% want to buy


Right now, 95% of B2B buyers are not in the market for your products or services.

An Ehrenberg-Bass Institute study carried out for the LinkedIn B2B Institute reveals that companies change their service providers such as banking, legal advice, software or telecoms around every five years. This means only 20% are in the market for those services in a given year and just 5% in a given quarter. The other 95% aren’t in the market at all! That’s a stark statistic.

What does this mean for B2B marketing?

Successful B2B marketing is so often about timing. If your marketing message isn’t relevant to the customer when they see it, it probably won’t get much attention. So miss that once in five years window, and you’re out of the game.

Short-term bursts of marketing activity are less likely to be successful when only 5% of your audience are ready to take notice.

Longer-term marketing tactics which focus on brand awareness and relationship building are the key to success. Keeping at the forefront of mind will mean that when the customer is in a position to buy, they’ll think of your brand. Customers favour familiar brands when purchasing or searching for new suppliers. Familiarity provides reassurance.

Help make your brand memorable to your potential customers through activities such as social media, advertising, sponsorship, email marketing, PR, direct mail and events. There’s no one size fits all approach, so the tactics you choose must be relevant to your target customer, your objectives, your resources and your budget. A mix of activities is usually best.

However you decide to market your business, the key to success is consistency and regularity. So when the 5% are ready to buy, they’ll think of your brand.