Your marketing strategy can make or break your business. With the right one, you can launch your company into a successful one, while a wrong or misguided approach can lead to disastrous results. This is why you should look into different approaches in marketing that can help you bring your business to new heights.
Even in an industry as successful and in-demand as cannabis, your marketing strategy remains relevant. In fact, proper promotion, branding, and advertising are one of the fundamental aspects that can help your cannabis business. This is true especially with the highly competitive nature of the marijuana industry.
When looking for the best marketing strategy for your cannabis business, you want to look into B2B marketing. It expands your horizons, especially if you offer services in addition to products. If you are not familiar with this approach, this guide will help you understand the role of B2B in cannabis marketing.
B2B and B2C: How do they differ?
Before we move onto the topic of B2B as a marketing strategy, you might be curious how B2B differs from the more popular approach or one that you are most familiar with as a consumer. The most essential difference between the two is their targets. B2B stands for business-to-business, which means that the company offers products and services to other companies. This encompasses a wide range of offerings that other businesses can benefit from.
You might be wondering how one business can appeal to another. The thing about this approach is it actually speaks to the decision-maker in the company instead of the company itself. This is a vital distinction because the marketer should know what decision-makers are looking for. Moreover, if targeting a particular company, the marketer should be aware of the requirements being considered by this specific decision-maker.
On the other hand, B2C stands for business-to-consumer. In this approach, the company is appealing to current and prospective customers who will purchase their products or services. Usually, these customers avail of these offerings for their personal use.
Usually, B2C tackles its target market as a whole. This means that it looks at the demographics it is aiming for and tries to address the potential customers’ needs and wants. However, this is not to say that B2C is not a hyper-targeted approach because both B2B and B2C qualify as such. What differs between the two is the process in which companies reach, engage, and do business with their customers.
B2B as a Marketing Strategy
As a consumer, you might be more familiar with the B2C approach. This is when you watch your television and you see a commercial showcasing a particular product or service, or when you are browsing your social media feed and you come across an advertisement for a company’s offering.
This type of marketing also gives the potential consumer the agency to spread its campaign by sharing or forwarding their materials. Moreover, the company can simply show its advertisements to say, social media users, in the hopes of attracting the attention of interested users who can be converted to sales. In other words, marketers do target a specific group, but they do not have to target a particular individual within that group.
However, as a business looking to attract other businesses, the process is much more complex. This is because while you have a specific group of companies or individuals in mind, you need to cater to a particular individual’s interest. This individual is the decision-maker in a company.
So, if you are offering cannabis products you manufacture in your own facility to retailers, it is not enough that you show off your marketing materials to its employees. You need to make sure that the decision marker sees your potential. The decision-maker could be the owner, an acquisitions director, or anyone who calls the shots within your target organization.
Keep in mind that selling your products and services is not the only business activity covered by B2B. This can also encompass the process of finding an investor who could provide funding for your business, which you can use to expand your operations or offerings, and other similar activities.
How B2B Helps in Marijuana Marketing
With business-to-business transactions, you get to build a rapport with other cannabis companies. As mentioned, you could be a processing facility offering your products to dispensaries and retailers. You could also be a marijuana growing farm that seeks to sell your plants to a processing factory. You might be selling flowers and buds, and extracts looking to partner up with an edibles company.
There are lots of possibilities with B2B. The main thing you should remember is that once you arrive at an agreement and sign a contract with your partner company, you are guaranteed to get bulk or wholesale orders from a regular customer as long as the contract holds.
One thing you should remember about B2B marketing is that it may take time to see results. This is because the decision-making process can take a long time. Remember, the stakes are high when partnering with another company. Before deciding to go with your company, your target business will conduct researches and studies regarding the feasibility and profitability of working with you.
The research process can include looking at your business’ credibility and integrity, public perception, reputation within your target market, and other benefits. Keep in mind that your standing in the cannabis industry and the eyes of your consumers can affect your target company’s own public perception and reputation.
B2B Campaign Strategies You Should Consider
Now that you know how B2B marketing can help your company, you might be wondering how you can get started with such an approach. What you need to know is that you will see familiar tools because it shares methods with B2C. Here are some of the strategies you can implement for your campaign:
For your B2C campaign, you might be familiar with search engine optimization (SEO) as individual customers tend to go to Google and other search engines to start their search. The same is true with businesses. Of course, they already have an idea about big-name organizations they can partner with. However, keep in mind that startups and medium organizations can look for candidates other than big companies. They may be looking for other startups and medium businesses to collaborate and partner up with.
To start looking for a potential partner, these companies, or at least their researchers and decision-makers, may look to Google as a starting point. In this case, you want to make sure that your website ranks high in search results so they find you on the first page.
Let’s say you specifically target a company and send a proposal to its decision-maker. You can bet that they will look into your company and the first thing they will take a peek at is your website. SEO can make sure that when the researcher or decision-maker keys in your company name on Google, you will be able to show they what you are all about.
Link building or the process of creating valuable links from a high-authority site into your own is a type of B2B marketing strategy. You will need to reach out to such websites and come up with a proposal that will show the site’s owner the benefits of publishing your content on their website.
These backlinks or in-bound links can be seen as a two-way road. On one hand, you can tap into the audience of the high-authority site you partnered up with. Plus, you gain a referral from a trusted and popular website. All of these can increase your own authority.
On the other hand, delivering high-quality content to the host website will benefit it by driving additional traffic. This traffic comes from your target market who will be visiting the host site in addition to its own pool or visitors.
Build Your Cannabis Business Social Network
Lastly, you want to expand your network. Traditionally, the best way to do this is by attending and participating in conferences and forums. These connect you with potential consumers and business partners in a highly targeted event. However, with restrictions regarding public gatherings, one of your best bets is through social networking sites.
Yes, you can perform your activities on more conventional platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and many others. However, the main strength of cannabis social networks is that they are dedicated to marijuana businesses and consumers.
In fact, there are platforms such as LeafWire, Cannabis Pros, and Weedable which let you connect with other businesses and followers, build relationships with companies and even create business profiles.
The Bottom Line
B2B marketing is a great way to expand your company’s reach. With this approach, you can find other companies to work with and score a good contract, which can elevate your businesses into success. So, take time to study this approach and work with marketing experts that can help you achieve your goal.