A B2B marketing audit measures the current and past efforts of a company’s business-to-business (B2B) marketing activities and strategies. Like any other audit, the B2B marketing audit determines where a company stands in an effort to forecast future possible directions its B2B marketing strategy may take.
A B2B online marketing audit primarily evaluates web campaigns and online efforts, typically with data drawn from the company, its customers and its competitors.
The Purpose of a B2B Marketing Plan Audit
The purpose of an audit is to evaluate whether B2B marketing strategies are performing up to expectations. If they are, an audit can reveal the elements contributing to that strategy’s success. If the results are less than stellar, then an audit can also help identify what factors of the B2B marketing plan requires reevaluation. An online marketing audit can also point out which areas need growth or modification so that your company continues to improve and compete well on the market.
No successful business-to-business Internet marketing plan can exist in a vacuum, free of data or statistical information. To make your marketing strategy more consistent and effective, a B2B Internet marketing audit can be used to understand your business’s performance in your market as well as your online performance compared to your competitors.
Another valuable insight that marketing audits provide is the addition of new target markets for your products or solutions. Because a marketing audit is more objective, they allow companies to research new perspectives on their marketing strategy.
How to Conduct a Business-to-Business Marketing Audit
Understanding the steps behind the auditing process can help a company better facilitate its own B2B Internet marketing audit. The following is an example of a possible B2B marketing audit template:
- Company overview and solutions. Look at all of your basic company information, such as your address, when the company was established, sales history, employee information, a company timeline of important events, etc. Be sure to include an analysis of your products and their value. When you have assembled this information, draw conclusions about your customers and target audience and how they perceive your company. Does it match up with what you had in mind at the genesis of the company?
- Marketing goals and objectives. Look at the past goals you set for the company. How many of those goals have been met? How many of those goals have transitioned to something else? After evaluating past goals, make some goals that project into the future. Both long-term and short-term goals should be listed, with specific levels of improvement and change.
- Current Customers’ Descriptions. When describing your current customers, be sure to include what their job titles are, what their industry is, where they are located, and other information about their company. Once you have compiled this list, evaluate the size of your current customer base, as well as the value of your customers. This may seem utilitarian, but it can help you understand the audience you should be targeting.
- Target customers’ descriptions. Describe your ideal customer. How big is their company, where are they located and what industry are they in? Once you’ve identified the basic information, you can identify target customers that may be outside your typical range of target customers. Determine if influences on the market have changed and how that has affected your target customers. Does your target audience need to change? What changes does that entail for your marketing strategy? Also, be sure to look at the size of your target audience and assess whether that needs to change to meet your goals.
- Analysis of past B2B Internet marketing strategies. B2B online marketing essentially exists to promote growth in your company. Try to pinpoint exactly what has promoted growth in your company, and what has been less than effective. Look at new solutions that you may not have tried yet. For example, you may have heard about the advantages of B2B content marketing, but haven’t taken the time to implement it in your B2B online marketing plan. Additionally, look at the competition and see how their marketing strategies compare to your own. It may be that you can learn from their strategy.
- Descriptions of competitors. Profile at least three competitors that have similar products or services to your own. Examine their products and production methods, and their sales history. Correlate this with their current strategy. If you can, find out what their future marketing strategies are.
The process of a marketing audit can seem exhaustive, but the point is to take every mitigating circumstance into account. But it can be challenging, sorting through and making sense of so much data. If you don’t have the time or resources to conduct your own audit, you can enlist the help of B2B marketing companies.
Contact Sprint Marketing to Get Your Own Free Leads Analysis and See How Sprint Marketing Can Help You with Your Online B2B Marketing Audit
Sprint Marketing is a B2B Internet marketing company that specializes in marketing research and intelligence. In the process of our B2B marketing audit, we also provide you with B2B lead research, B2B competition research and online industry research. Contact a Sprint Marketing expert today to get your own free leads analysis and learn more about Sprint Marketing’s B2B marketing audit.