What do businesses that grew in spite of lockdowns have in common? Analyze that to develop your own thriving business or choose investment opportunities.
Business-2-Business (B2B) and especially cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) companies saw exponential growth.
Multiple factors are driving SaaS growth including security issues, companies finally having to move online, and trends toward centralizing cloud applications.
The #1 strategy for making your business indispensable is to specialize in enabling other companies to grow their sales.
Anything that contributes to their bottom line will keep them paying you for your services. And 40.62% of businesses surveyed said converting visitors to buyers was their greatest challenge.
Improve Their Communications
Even before working from home became so common, there are some communications best handled by phone. For example:
- Urgent communications in a crisis
- Critical customer support issues
- Pitches and negotiations
That is even more true now with so many live meetings and events being cancelled. The need for better online communications has led to Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS).
According to UCaaS 2021: A Practical Guide to Unified Communications, UCaaS is in high demand because it is a secure way to reliably “streamline processes, improve accuracy and efficiency, and enhance both employee and customer experiences”.
With so many companies extending their work-from-home policies and the number of apps required steadily growing, businesses are looking to simplify those integrations.
The ability of UCaaS to integrate phone, chat, video conferencing and SMS has led to climbing valuations of this market segment.
Grandview Research reports a UCaaS market size of 38.74 billion USD in 2020. They predict a 2021-2028 compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 23.6%.
Integrated Business Planning Services
Enterprise businesses are also struggling to simplify their operations. Unfortunately, many Integrated Business Planning Initiatives (IBP) fail.
IBP can integrate production, sales, procurement, marketing and financial. But it only works when there is executive engagement, clear goals, and agreement across all departments.
Consulting agencies able to ensure that IBP succeeds are in demand.
Research and Implement Content Strategy
97% of B2B buyers expect easy access to content relevant to their specific industry needs according to a DemandBase B2B business survey published in 2020.
Educator, Keynote Speaker and Author Neal Schaffer shared what businesses can expect from blogging regularly, including these highlights:
- 126% higher lead growth
- Content costs 62% less to publish on a blog, but generates 3x the leads
- Blogs attract 94% more incoming links to your website, improving your rankings in search
- There are ample reasons why every business should have a blog on their website. The obvious choice for any blog is WordPress. It is the easiest to use and the most popular option.
And there are excellent guides explaining how to start a WordPress blog. So you have no reason not to reap these benefits sooner than later.
If you do not already have one, install one today. But if you do, get serious about optimizing, keyword research, and attracting more links and customers.
45% of B2B Marketers name blogging as their second best channel for generating sales (after email marketing).
Conversion Optimization to Increase Profits
Another reason you need a strong content strategy is to increase conversions. The Foleon’s 2021 Interactive Insights Report discovered:
"Close to 70% of the B2B buyer’s journey is completed before a prospect ever reaches out to sales."
That means everything your potential customers want to know needs to be published on your site already. And as mentioned before, the fast way to do that is with a blog.
But it isn’t simply a matter of publishing whatever comes to mind. You need a content strategy and to optimize your site to lead your potential buyers from discovery to purchase.
You need content from top-of-funnel (TOF) through the middle (MOF) to the bottom (BOF). Each step along the buyer journey needs customized content.
This requires researching different keywords for each stage and developing content for each keyword phrase. Start with knowing your TOP to BOF keywords.
Doing this well requires your entire team working together. Start by asking your sales team to share what questions customers ask. Those questions need to be answered in your content.
Your SEO needs to research and provide lists of keyword phrases for each phase of the buyer journey.
Then your content creators can start creating one page or post for each keyword phrase you plan to target. It is best to use writers who know about SEO.
Much of your content should include a Call-to-Action (CTA). And then it should be optimized by your SEO or conversion optimization expert.
At a minimum, someone on your team should have a thorough understanding of how to use the SEO plugin installed on your blog.
Choose just one of the SEO plugins Ahrefs tested and reviewed. The two most often mentioned in marketing circles in 2021 are Yoast and Rank Math.
Content to Increase Visibility and Improve Rankings
Content does not mean only text. Getting attention on social media and in search requires using multiple forms of media.
The best content includes at least one and ideally multiple images. Adding a video, SlideShare, and Infographic will get your content more shares and social media traffic.
Videos are easier to rank in Google than blog posts. Images appearing in Google image search will bring in more traffic to your content.
Develop content with a strategy of using it to improve your rankings as well as drive leads and traffic. That means some of your content should not be self-promotional.
Give journalists and writers who contribute on major sites what they want:
- Current statistics
- Business results and success stories
- Reports and survey results
- Images and videos they can republish
Done well, content can attract brand mentions and incoming links. This will raise the visibility and credibility of your business and move your site up in search.
All of the strategies mentioned above are ripe sources of income for savvy agencies, consultants and freelancers.
They can also be used to determine what companies to invest in as those implementing these strategies well are proven to grow faster and increase sales.
Optional infographic at Opyrus.com