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Marketing to B2B audiences. Can a marketplace offer a solution?

Marketing products and services to business customers can often be a hit or miss situation. Almost any advertisement campaign aims to reach as many potential customers as possible. The obvious risk of this is displaying ads to those who - though they match the targeting criteria - don’t currently have a need for the advertised product or service. This can lead to a cluttered advertising experience and a waste of significant resources.


Let’s have a look at the three stages of a business customer’s need for a product or service:

1. The product / service is not yet needed. At this stage, a business customer may be aware of the existence of a service provider, but it is not a top priority for them.

2. The product / service is no longer needed. This occurs when a business customer has already received the service they were looking for or no longer requires it. For example, when a company that used accounting services decides to handle the accounting in-house.

3. The product / service is needed right now. This is when a business customer is actively searching for a specific service and is ready to make a purchase.


Here are a few examples to better illustrate the stages of business customer’s need:

  • The customer is aware of IT support services but is not yet in need of them. For example, the company size is quite small, they use all possible types of cloud services and don’t have specific user or software management tasks. This is an example of the first stage, when the service is not yet needed.

  • The customer has already hired an IT support company or found an in-house employee and no longer needs external services. They are unlikely to engage a service provider, even when they are exposed to ads for IT support services or get a special discounted offer. This is an example of the second stage, when the service is no longer needed.

  • The customer is searching for an IT support company right now. For example the business has grown up, central user / software management activities are required to make the work more efficient. This is an example of the third stage, when the service is needed right now and the customer is ready to purchase.


What's next?

Advertising to businesses at the first two stages would be a waste of resources, as these customers are unlikely to make a purchase. The third stage, however, is when advertising can be most effective. Yet, identifying the customers at the third stage can be challenging, as formal targeting criteria can be precisely the same for companies at the three stages. Another challenge is that when a company starts the search for a specific product or service, they are likely to be bombarded with targeted ads from multiple companies, making it difficult to stand out and reach the potential client.

This is where a marketplace comes in: it connects clients looking for a product or service with the providers, able to deliver now. ReStaffy is a B2B services marketplace that brings together businesses in need of external services with companies offering these services and thus helping service providers target customers in the third stage and increasing the likelihood of a successful conversion.

Looking to expand your client list and save on marketing costs? - Sign up at ReStaffy and create your first service offer!

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