Domaine Simha: B2B Marketing
Domaine Simha is a wine company that is currently using direct selling method to reach its business customers. To reach a huge number of its business customers, the company has opted for channels with the belief that they will increase their market share and serve business customers effectively and efficiently. Before going deeper into the Domaine Simha’s case, it is important to understand the significance of B2B markets in the recent and global marketing trends. Business markets have presented unique and challenging opportunities to marketers. Unlike business-consumer market business customers respond differently to the market techniques offered by the marketers, and they also make complex buying decisions (Wong, 2013, p. 58). Therefore, marketers such as Domaine Simha should establish and implement unique and effective marketing techniques that will provide long-lasting customer-relationship with the business market. Likewise, Domaine Simha should choose its marketing channel partners wisely and employ effective communication instruments to increase its market share.
Suitable Channel Partners for Domaine Simha
Companies that turnaround and resell products to final clients would form a major focus of Domaine Simha since it deals in wine. In selecting a suitable channel partner and ensuring a flourishing partner ecosystem, Domaine Simha should conduct a thorough partner analysis to identify their channel priorities, target markets, and whether the partners are connected to its target customers and verticals (Hadjikhani & LaPlaca, 2013, p. 296). By defining its channel priorities, Domaine Simha will be able to see how much such channel partners’ priorities align with the firm’s, and whether they are the right partners to work with. Domaine Simha should also evaluate which other vendors are used by its potential partners to verify the average order prices and quantity. This is because, when a vendor brings more revenue to the partner and the entire sales force, then it will be easier for that vendor to have the support of the partner’s sales force in driving new business and lead generation. The company should also ensure that its partner is well-educated on its products to avoid wastage of time and funds in training.
Market focus is another characteristic of a suitable partner for Domaine Simha. The company should conduct a thorough analysis to identify its potential partner’s specific target market, discover their networking activities and selling strategies. Target market analysis enables a firm to determine whether a potential partner operates with one of its competitors and whether its client base suits the business with regards to size, application and location (Ha, et al., 2016, p. 112). In marketing, competition is a significant consideration. Furthermore, when a potential partner is in a partnership with a firm’s competitor, it may lead to conflicts of interest which may, in turn, reduce the firm’s selling territory. Therefore, an organization which deals with a firm’s competitor should be avoided as this may contribute to a reduction in the number of sales.
A strong channel partner is one that is committed to the organization and its long-term vision. The partner should also be ready to dedicate its staff to the partnership. The main reason for involving into a partnership is to increase the sales and ensure competitiveness (Ha, et al., 2016, p. 113). Therefore, Domaine Simha should ensure that it selects a partner who is ready to appreciate the long-term partnership and be determined to developing a strategy to attain both of their goals.
Also, a suitable partner should have a persistent focus on the value of their customers. The most outstanding success factor in the wine industry is clarity concerning target client segments. The company should select a partner with a similar target market classification. Also, a suitable channel partner must maintain a strong customer focus, and be able to satisfy the needs of its prospective customers. There has been an irresistible improvement in technology, which has necessitated e-commerce and social media marketing (Quin et al., 2014, p. 20). All these aspects are significant in B2B marketing since businesses need to shift to automated selling and networking techniques such as the use of Facebook and Twitter. This depicts that partners and businesses which do not monitor their value proposition and competitive position, risk losing their momentum in the market. This is also a factor that should be evaluated by Domaine Simha before selecting a channel partner.
Furthermore, Domaine Simha should select a partner with a strong vendor and customer engagement rate. In the current marketing environment, it seems that businesses have limited time and a lot of tasks to carry out. Also, research has consistently shown impressive statistics proposing that partners who have maintained strategic connections with their vendor’s and vendor resources such as marketing, sales, product teams and technical support tend to perform better than those that maintain purely tactical and transactional vendor engagements (Quin et al., 2014, p. 24). The evidence shows that adopting a strategic approach and the right communication channels and vendor clusters and forming deeper relationships with the vendors and customers tend to make partners more successful. Therefore, Domaine Simha should select partners who strategically manage their vendor engagements
Last, the company should consider developing partner relationships with businesses which are committed to automation. Automation is a primary consideration in B2B marketing as it ensures efficient service delivery between channel partners. A vast range of technological systems are in use in the marketing environment today ranging from marketing portals, websites, sales management software, sales tracking software, customer relationship software and social media (Quin, et al., 2014, p. 25). These systems are available to ensure faster, secure and more convenient delivery of goods and services. Again, research has insisted that partners who embrace automation in their marketing by optimizing their partner marketing platforms and internal communication tools have a propensity to perform better than those that do not embrace automation. Therefore, a convenient channel partner to Domaine Simha is that partner who will embrace automation in the partnership management process.
Suitable Communication Instruments
A successful B2B marketing partnership is not just achieved through careful channel partner selection. However, Domaine Simha should also utilize appropriate communication instruments to connect with its partners in the B2B system. This will enhance a smooth flow of information in the business. Marketing the business’ products to the relevant audiences is essential in keeping the company afloat. Effective business-to-business marketing is achieved through tools designed to enable the business reach a large number of audience efficiently and at once. The communication instruments available for the business in B2B marketing include social media and dashboards, email services, traditional advertising, websites and Blogs and lead generation.
A B2B website enables buyers to connect with manufacturers, exporters and wholesalers and vice versa. Therefore, Domaine Simha can create a B2B website to act as its online shop window. This website will also act as the appropriate go-to-site for any client who wants to know more about the firm and its products. Ideally, B2B buyers are not shoppers. They are market researchers hence the need for every business to ensure their websites are properly updated with the right level of information and also appeal to the end users and the customers (Haotari et al., 2015, p. 761). The end-users and the customers are two different groups with different demands. The customers will search for detailed and easily accessible information concerning the products, while the end-users tend to adopt a more in-depth approach, being attracted to the company as a whole, its professionalism, and the products it offers. Therefore, establishing a professional and branded website to meet the requirements of all the users is essential.
As defined by Haotari, et al. (2015, p. 763), social media entails applications and websites that help users to establish and share content or engage in social networking. Research has shown that from 2012, 91% of all the B2B marketers now use social media in their marketing activities. Therefore, for Domaine Simha to promote its products in a B2B channel, it should make use of social media platforms. However, a trick is, a company should exploit one platform broadly instead of struggling with managing many social media platforms (Jussila et al., 2014, p. 606). When talking about social media, what runs in our minds are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube Google+, LinkedIn and even Pinterest. Therefore, it is essential for Domaine Simha to choose a more suitable platform, between these and capitalize on it to engage its clients.
Lead generation entails establishing a robust database of personal business leads. It offers a business a powerful marketing tool (Jussila et al., 2014, p. 608). Therefore, Domaine Simha should exploit a range of marketing approaches both offline and online to establish and nurture leads. This will assist the company in communicating with its clients and promote its offering. The company should also use its website, Facebook accounts, direct mail, telemarketing and exhibitions as tools to assist it in capturing data and building its customer relationship marketing.
Print media and Telemarketing
Finally, going by the explanations given by Jussila, et al. (2014, p. 610), direct mail, print media, and telemarketing are some of the communication instruments which are still efficient in enabling businesses to reach their clients in the B2B world. These instruments are classified under traditional marketing methods. A correctly targeted direct mail is more efficient at covering potential clients than emails. Domaine Simha can also use trade shows and public exhibitions to conduct face to face meetings with its clients, collect data and relay strong brand messages to the clients.
In a nutshell, Domaine Simha should choose channel partners who are focused on the organizational vision, customer value, high vendor engagement rate and automation. Also, some communication channels available for Domaine Simha entail websites, social media, traditional channels and lead optimization.
Hadjikhani, A. & LaPlaca, P., 2013. Development of B2B marketing theory. Industrial Marketing Management, 42(3), pp. 294-305.
Ha, H. Y., Lee, M. S. & Janda, S., 2016. Effects of economic and social satisfaction on partner trust: an investigation of temporal carryover effects. European journal of marketing, 50(1/2), pp. 100-123.