As an IT company, you may have all of the skills and resources to do your own marketing. You have a data guru who can dig into Google Analytics and a developer who can maintain your website. Pay-per-click isn’t hard to set up, and you can post content to your blog and social media.
Maybe, you have a junior marketer that can do all of these marketing activities, but the question is: should you leave the strategy, execution, and analysis to someone new to the industry or to marketing?
A marketing consultant would tell you that technology companies are unique from other types of businesses. You have an audience with a different kind of knowledge and skill set than other consumers. Not only that, but your audience will be looking to you to showcase that you can use technology to your advantage – even when it comes to marketing.
Let’s explore how a marketing consultant can impact your marketing strategy and help you stand out against your competition.
How Sales and Marketing have Changed for IT Businesses
As an IT company, you know that technology changes at lightning speed. Along with that, so have marketing strategies. It is now about finding prospects, in the right place, at the right time, with the right message. Not only that, but you need to find the prospects before your competitors.
IT products are more complex than other businesses. Often, the decision to make a technology purchase involves multiple decision-makers and has a longer buying cycle. In order to achieve growth, you need to reach new customers and expand business among existing customers.
Putting out content and “checking the boxes” isn’t enough of a marketing strategy. You need to understand your audience and figure out how to reach them. Potential buyers can be found in more channels than ever, and you need to focus your energy in the space that will bring in the most results.
Marketing for IT companies isn’t about guesswork. It is about thoughtful, strategic, and adaptable initiatives.
Marketing Considerations for Technology Companies
While you may know what needs to be done, implementing a strategy includes a comprehensive look at your potential customers and what will drive them to take action. You want to compel them to reach out to you so that you generate leads that you may not have been able to find on your own.
Here are some considerations for IT companies that want to build a competitive advantage.
Research Your Competition
You need to understand your customers and your competitors. Your target audience is looking for information, and your competitors are providing it. This should shape your messaging and how you will reach your audience.
Once your customers find you, you need to distinguish yourself from your competitors. This includes aligning your brand with your business objectives and ensuring that the brand is apparent in your marketing strategy.
Brand development for IT companies is particularly fluid. You need to stay current on trends and respond to an ever-changing technology landscape while still staying true to your company’s persona.
You need to have all of your bases covered: website, SEO, PPC advertising, email marketing, and more. Automation can help make some of these tasks less tedious.
But the real value is in the data that you will get from these activities. You need to measure and understand the results from your campaigns, from engagement through conversions.
Technology buyers want to have information at their fingertips when they make a decision. More importantly, they want to see their vendor as a leader in the industry.
This means that you need to create content that answers questions. You also need to establish your business as a forward-thinking expert through thought leadership. Then the final step is to get this content in front of your audience through the right channels.
Social Media Presence
Social Media can be a powerful tool for reaching potential customers and building loyalty among your existing customer base – but it has to be done right. Otherwise, it is a waste of time and energy. You need to identify the channels where your audience is most likely to interact with you.
Social Media isn’t a tool for generating B2B leads, but it can be an effective branding opportunity. If a prospect checks out your social media, you want them to be satisfied with what they find.
How a Marketing Consultant Can Drive Business
Because of the rapid pace of both technology and marketing, too much experimentation costs time and money. Instead, a marketing consultant can make sure that you are focused on the right strategy at the right time. Some benefits include:
Being dedicated to your marketing efforts. Internally, you may struggle to have someone that truly understands marketing or how to interpret the results. Your staff may be pulled in too many directions and not know the next steps to take.
Conduct marketing experiments. Are you using the right channels to drive business? A marketing consultant can drive experiments and A/B testing to determine what will achieve the best results.
Support from a Virtual CMO. Your business may not have enough marketing needs for a full-time chief marketing officer. A marketing consultant can act as a virtual CMO to support your internal team.
Focused on results. While your internal team may be well-suited to carry out the “tasks” of marketing, a marketing consultant is laser-focused on outcomes. The consultant is accountable to your IT business for producing the results you want from your marketing strategy.
Boost your IT Business with a Marketing Consultant
If you want to leverage marketing to grow your IT business, you should consider a marketing consultant. By using a consultant’s expertise, you can achieve greater ROI from your marketing dollars and push ahead of your competition.