Build Trust and Drive Leads: B2B Influencer Marketing Tactics That Work

Build Trust and Drive Leads: B2B Influencer Marketing Tactics That Work

B2B Influencer Marketing Tactics

Does your brand need a push to expand your digital marketing presence? You can add influencer marketing as another channel to expand your reach. 

Influencer marketing is currently making its mark on the digital marketing landscape. And while this marketing activity is popular in the business-to-consumer (B2C) sphere, business-to-business (B2B) brands are slowly making it an integral part of their campaigns, especially in the Philippines.

What Is Influencer Marketing for B2B?

According to Ogilvy, B2B influencer marketing refers to creating partnerships between brands and influential individuals, key industry figures, or subject matter experts.

The practice of influencer marketing is the same for B2C and B2B businesses – seeking help of famous personalities in promoting brands. However, B2C brands often go to flashy personalities and the latest dance craze while B2B brands focus on accomplished professionals to accomplish this goal. 

For B2B companies, the aim of influencer marketing is to leverage the popularity of the following influencers: 

  • Industry analysts or respected figures providing independent research and insights.
  • Expert consultants and advisors offering guidance and solutions to businesses in your niche.
  • Leading journalists and broadcasters who publish magazines and other papers in your industry.
  • Professors and researchers with academic credibility and specialized knowledge.
  • Customer advocates or satisfied clients who champion your brand and are open to share their positive experiences.
  • Experienced employees with the expertise and potential to promote your brand. 

Why Invest in B2B Influencer Marketing?

According to Asia Pacific Insights: Influencer Marketing Report 2023 by Partipost, an overwhelming majority (92%) of the surveyed Filipino companies have tried influencer marketing in 2023 compared to 76% in 2021. 

Philippine brands that allot 10% to 50% of their marketing budget for this task also doubled from 32% to 50%. On the side of users, more than 90% of Filipinos surveyed prefer influencer accounts over brand accounts, seeing these as more relatable content. 

These figures were echoed by another report, this time by Ogilvy. In a survey of 550 Chief Marketing Officers across 11 Asian markets including Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Vietnam, 75% of the brands are already engaging in influencer marketing. Of these, 93% of the participants are planning to increase the adoption of this marketing practice. 

Overall, the survey found the majority of participants have a positive view about influencer marketing. A staggering 92% of survey participants believe using B2B Influencers for hyper-targeted marketing or personalized messaging is an effective strategy for increasing brand consideration and customer acquisition.

Influencer is the Digital Version of Word-of-Mouth

According to Ogilvy, by 2025, 75% of the workforce will comprise digital natives who have a distinct form of social relationships. Hence, businesses have to adapt to the new norm of communication, with digital becoming increasingly integrated with our physical interactions.

This condition will lay a fertile ground to the growth of popularity of influencers as word-of-mouth advocates. They fill in the requirements of the traditional word-of-mouth, which is an honest and genuine opinion coming from relatable experiences from real people you can trust.

Word-of-mouth is among the marketing activities with the highest efficacy rate in the B2B marketing landscape. In fact, this marketing tool impacts 91% of B2B sales, in a way. 

How B2B Influencers Can Leverage Brands

Through influencer marketing, your brand can:   

  • Build relationships and collaborations with individuals or organizations carrying significant weight within your target B2B audience.
  • Capitalize on their expertise and influence to promote your brand, product, or service.
  • Build long-term, strategic partnerships aimed at establishing your brand as a thought leader and trusted authority within the industry.

What’s more, exposure of your product or service through these personalities can increase brand awareness and credibility, generating leads and qualified traffic. It can also help you create more authoritative content and thought leadership. Your brand can also build positive associations with respected industry voices. 

How B2B Influencer Marketing is Done?

  • Thought leadership collaborations that can foster partnership with industry experts for webinars, white papers, or blog posts to establish brand credibility and knowledge authority.
  • Social media campaigns that leverage influencer networks for targeted content promoting events, webinars, or case studies to reach relevant decision-makers.
  • Community management that opens doors for your brand to engage with B2B communities and forums through establishing thought leadership, answering questions, and building organic relationships.
  • Local event sponsorships during industry conferences, seminars, or meetups that will connect your brand with key players and potential customers.
  • Micro-influencer partnerships that will allow you to engage with smaller, yet highly trusted individuals with specialized knowledge within your niche.

Where to Find B2B Influencers?

Spotting the right person as a B2B influencer can be a challenge. Here are some popular venues where you can find them:

  • Marketing magazines and blogs. Look for articles featuring B2B influencer marketing case studies in the Philippines or Southeast Asia related to your brand.
  • Industry award websites. Check for award announcements highlighting successful B2B influencer campaigns in your specific industry.
  • Marketing agencies and consultancies. Contact local agencies specializing in B2B marketing or influencer marketing for insights and potential case studies.
  • Social media platforms. Go to LinkedIn and other platforms to search for relevant discussions and content shared by B2B influencers in your field.
  • Networking events. Attend industry events and conferences to connect with potential influencers and hear about successful marketing strategies.

Lack of B2B Influentials’ Utilization

However, despite the CMOs’ optimism for the influencer marketing’s impact to better ROI, its potential is still far from reaching its full realization. The research found that companies do not assign a team to fully utilize its aftersales influence even though 47% of respondents agree B2B influencers could have the biggest impact during aftersales. 

Influencers are also far from fully utilized in lead generation, considering 60% of CMOs have yet to experience improvement in lead generation from B2B marketing activities. 

How to Improve Your B2B Influential Campaigns

To win big in B2B influencer campaigns, you need substance, collaboration, and strategic planning.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to crafting campaigns that resonate with decision-makers while elevating your brand within your niche.

Step 1: Define Campaign Goals & Objectives

You need to specify what exactly you want to achieve. 

Are you cultivating

  • brand awareness
  • lead generation
  • content creation 
  • thought leadership?

From your chosen objective, set Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound (SMART) goals. Then align them with your chosen influencers’ skills and reach.

Step 2: Choose talent wisely

Carefully come up with personality profiles that define who these influencers are. Make sure your brand voice and values fit with yours. Each Influencer possesses a unique voice that resonates with a specific portion of your customer base. Remember, they are your company’s extended mouthpieces. The content they produce is associated with your brand image. 

Step 3: Choose the Right Format and Platform

Pick the right format that will impact your target audience and influencers’ strengths. Don’t just jump on trending formats.

Here are some content formats to choose: 

  • Industry articles and reports: If you want to establish your authority, partner on in-depth research or white papers showcasing your company’s expertise.
  • Webinars and live events: To spread brand awareness, leverage interactive sessions for thought leadership and engagement.
  • Social media campaigns: Attract qualified leads on platforms where your target market is. Through this, you can highlight your brand and collaborate on targeted campaigns tailored to specific platforms and influencer audiences.
  • Podcasts and interviews: Create relevant and quality content using audio formats for in-depth discussions and industry insights.

Step 4: Invest in Valuable Partnerships

Nurture your partnership that goes beyond financial by taking time to invest in these partnerships. 

Find time to introduce your brand to your selected influencers and educate them about your products. Invite them to your business development meetings, have them meet your employees. 

By building strong, meaningful, long-term relationships with Influencers they can get invested in your brand’s purpose and naturally advocate for it. 

Step 5: Co-create Authentic and Valuable Content

Avoid scripted pitches and generic topics. Focus on:

  • Industry relevance: Address current challenges, trends, and pain points within your niche.
  • Data-driven insights: Leverage the influencer’s expertise and research to offer valuable perspectives.
  • Thought leadership: Position your brand as a leader in the conversation through insightful content.
  • Storytelling and case studies: Showcase real-world applications and tangible benefits of your solutions.

Step 6: Promote and Amplify Campaign Reach

Now that your chosen influencer has already produced content, don’t let it stay siloed. Leverage your platforms and networks to maximize reach through:

  • Cross-promotion: Feature influencer content on your website, social media, and email marketing.
  • Paid advertising: Consider strategic targeting to reach relevant audiences beyond the influencer’s immediate followers.
  • Industry outreach: Share the campaign with relevant publications, communities, and thought leaders.
  • Engage the influencer’s audience: Actively participate in discussions and respond to comments, building deeper connections.

Step 5: Measure and Refine for Continuous Improvement

Never forget to track your campaign’s impact through these metrics:

  • Website traffic and leads: Check out the traffic generated and leads linked to the influencer campaign.
  • Brand sentiment and awareness: Monitor online conversations and brand mentions related to your campaign.
  • Engagement and reach: Track reach, impressions, and engagement metrics on the influencer’s and your own platforms.
  • Return on investment (ROI): Evaluate the overall impact on your business goals and marketing objectives.

Start Your B2B Influencer Journey with LeapOut

Nearly all marketing experts and CMOs recommend B2B companies to include influencer  campaigns in their digital marketing mix. While you can initiate this in your company, you still need an experienced digital marketing agency like LeapOut to conceptualize, enforce and sustain this marketing activity in your business. Contact us now to kickstart your B2B influencer marketing for B2B for this year. 

Tony Chua
Tony Chua

Tony Chua is an adept Web Content Specialist and HubSpot-certified professional, with an Economics degree from the University of Santo Tomas and over ten years in content creation. Specializing in SEO articles, blog posts, and social media content, Tony has a diverse background encompassing news writing, press releases, and editorial work.

His multifaceted expertise also covers desktop publishing, graphic design, web development, and video editing. At LeapOut Digital, Tony applies his versatile skills to enhance digital narratives and engage a global audience through compelling content.