Buzz marketing is a form of viral marketing. It’s designed to get B2B end-customers talking about a product or service through conversations, in person and on social media platforms. When end-customers start talking about the features, benefits, and value of a product or service, the buzz not only creates awareness, but helps generate sales and profits.
Sometimes, marketers, often working with a PR/communications firm, create a buzz marketing campaign by starting with a stunt or event. For instance, one manufacturer, introducing a new type of cleaning solution, flew a drone carrying small samples of their products around a convention floor. It would then safely drop samples of these products. The drone itself garnered quite a bit of attention, and when the small samples were dropped, attendees rushed to pick them up.
The event received considerable media attention, not only within the manufacturer’s industry sector, but also in consumer media such as television and print publications. Videos of the drone were then placed on social media sites. The results were twofold:
- The manufacture secured the attention they wanted to introduce the new product.
- Sales took off almost immediately after the introduction; distributors and attendees were impressed not only with the stunt but also with the product.
Another type of buzz marketing is when someone that is viewed as an “influencer,” shares their positive thoughts about a product. In one case, a writer with a regular column in a major trade publication, would occasionally mention products he was impressed with. This influencer was not only well-known in his industry, but trusted. End-customers knew he would not promote a product unless he believed in it. The result: when he did mention a product or service, invariably, sales went up for that item.
Still another form of buzz marketing involves marketing content creation. This often refers to placing educational articles in major trade publications. These are designed to educate end-customers on a topic or help them with a challenge. However, in the process, weave in a product or service. Subtle yet powerful, this, too, has proven to generate sales.
To help ensure buzz marketing and marketing content creation works, marketers are advised to do the following:
After the stunt, event, article, or mentioning by an influencer, spread the information out on social media platforms. Make sure the platforms are the ones your end-customers frequent. Also, once is not enough. In some cases, repeating the same posting, or a variation of the posting, as often once per week is needed, at least initially.
Make sure the item is placed on your company website.
Videos can be very effective. Some public companies, however, are concerned about using YouTube, because they have little control of what YouTube may post after your video. However, the power YouTube offers is that it is owned and operated by Google. This means videos uploaded to YouTube tend to get more search engine attention than the other online video formats.
As the product is sold, ask for reviews. The goal of buzz marketing is to get people talking about a product or service. However, getting reviews can be more difficult in the B2B world, often because it is hard to find the actual end-customers. But it is still possible; it just requires a bit more time and effort.
Once end-customers are located, prepare case studies, discussing how these end-customers have put your product to work, and the benefits they have derived. Case studies are compelling. They help others in the same industry relate to a product, its features and benefits.
Supplement your buzz marketing efforts. We cannot depend on one stunt, one event, one article, or one influencers comment to generate enough buzz. Buzz marketing works best when it is part of an ongoing advertising and public relations/communications mix.
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