Public relations is an especially important process that applies to all business models including B2C and B2B companies. B2B PR is often an afterthought and many companies don’t practice it at all in favor of marketing but that shouldn’t be the case.
By crafting a B2B PR strategy, you can raise your company above the competition, become the voice of reason in your industry, and forge positive relationships with your customers – other businesses. If this is something your company is lacking, I have created a comprehensive guide to B2B PR, and the different tools you can implement in your strategies.
How Does B2B PR Differ from B2C PR?
First, we have to distinguish B2B PR from B2C PR. Yes, the two processes have similarities, but due to the nature of your audience and target customers, what you actually do is completely different.
B2C PC is concerned with trying to build your relationship directly with the end consumer and this is often done on a larger scale with hundreds and thousands of customers.
In contrast, B2B PR is involved with building your reputation and relationship with middlemen, or other businesses that are your customers. The scope is typically much smaller – where a B2C company may deal with 1000 customers, a B2B company may only deal with 10 businesses.
Also, the tone, voice, and content usually differ as you need a far greater level of professionalism when dealing with other businesses as opposed to the general public. You may not be able to use a joking or fun tone, but instead have to reinforce facts, and figures, and make your company the authoritative voice within your industry.
Potential Tools for a Succesful B2B PR Campaign
It’s clear that B2B PR is important and can have a positive impact on your company, but how exactly is it done? An online PR company can help define the best strategies for your business, but to get you started I have listed six simple tools you could incorporate:
Case studies are an integral part of B2B PR and can give your company tremendous authority and authenticity to your business customers. These could be case studies that your business writes about your product or service to show its benefits in a real-world scenario.
Alternatively, it could be case studies written by third-party journalists about your business or a particular aspect of your business such as your environmental policies, or a groundbreaking new technology or process you are using.
Nothing does wonders for your PR and business reputation like a positive testimonial. Testimonials from your actual business customers help portray your company in a positive light but also showcase the potential you have for other customers.
Testimonials should be authentic and there should be no financial incentive involved. Paid testimonials can often do the reverse and have a negative impact on your PR if you are found to have paid a business to write a favorable review.
Infographics are incredibly simple to devise and they can be used on numerous platforms such as social media, website pages, and blogs. They are easy to digest and offer great value in promoting the values and knowledge your company has.
This, in turn, can be a great PR boost as other businesses will learn new things and see your company as a major voice within the industry.
White papers are some of the most informative and insightful documents a B2B business can create and they can do wonders for your PR. Perhaps there is a central problem or need within your industry – you could write a white paper on this subject and give an authoritative voice and credible solution.
This not only helps promote your product or service if it answers the problem, but it shows your industry knowledge and improves your own credibility and PR. Make sure the white paper is factually correct and promoted via various media channels so it gains traction.
What could be a better PR spin than creating an entire E-book relating to an issue or theme within your industry?
E-books are essentially a longer, more detailed version of a white paper and can be used in B2B PR to further develop your authoritative voice and show your company as the voice of reason within your industry. Depending on the quality of the e-book, it could also be monetized and sold on platforms like Amazon!
Although the scope of B2B companies is usually smaller than B2B, social media still has a place in B2B PR and can be effective. You can forge links with journalists and reach out to them to write articles or posts on your company.
There can also be direct interactions with your business customers and you can drive engagement with them and their staff to create a more informal environment where ideas can be shared.
B2B Public Relations is Just as Important as B2C PR
I hope you can see the importance of B2B PR and why you should take it seriously. Too many B2B companies neglect this process because they feel the scope of B2B PR lacks compared to its B2C counterpart.
That’s not the case! With an effective and concentrated B2B PR strategy, you can greatly improve the relationships you have with businesses in your industry which should only lead to more sales and profit.