Spreading loss: Why we might be overdoing it with targeting in B2B marketing

Table of contents

For most marketers, it's a real mood killer: the word spreading loss. But there are also scatter gains in marketing. If you target your messages correctly.


Challenges with overly precise targeting in B2B


Leads, pointed target groups, even more pointed ones Personas, precise targeting: the desire of many marketing organisations to be in the Content marketing Reaching only the people they want to reach may be based on the experience of having had to accept a certain scattering loss with print advertising in the past. Spreading loss: for marketers there is probably no word with a worse reputation. And they are right, of course.

But in a media cosmos in which the role of print is no longer stage-filling and digital channels and social media platforms with all their targeting cascades set the pace, we should let go of the idea that wastage per se is a bad thing. In its reciprocal meaning, wastage can also mean that companies can use other messages for brand building and to reach out market buyers. All too often, too precise targeting also leads to a loss of Content marketing The result of this is that the customer is only reached by those buyers or prospects who have just stopped at a promising station in the customer journey at that moment.


Why precise targeting can be harmful


  1. Brand development: Excessive targeting can limit the reach and visibility of your brand. Scatter loss offers the opportunity to reach new target groups and increase brand awareness.
  2. Long-term relationships: Scattering losses make it possible to address potential customers early on in the decision-making process and build long-term relationships.


Examples: Scatter loss due to incorrect brand messages


You may know the already legendary campaign of the British "Economist"A quote in white lettering on a red background with the words "I don`t read The Economist" and "Management trainee, 42" underneath. With such banners and subjects, the British business magazine was not necessarily aimed at those who were about to take out a subscription, but at those young people who, because their careers were perhaps only just beginning, had not yet reached positions where reading The Economist would be compulsory.

Of course, it is not content marketing, but it is also clear that it is an emotional message that has been chosen - in stark contrast to those adverts on the Economist website that advertise certain subscription packages.

What we want to say: A scattering loss is not always explained by a too broad target group analysis, but above all by the wrong message. If you want to do brand building, as the Economist has just done, you need content that makes a company a brand. Brand chisel.

Let's dive a little into the statistics: LinkedIn - and they must know - had communicated that its members change positions or industries every four years on average. If you are an IT trainee at a paper company today and therefore not really authorised to make decisions on the purchase of new software, you could be the head of IT at an automotive company in a few years' time. There are hardly any straightforward careers any more. If the current head of IT at the automotive group has already come into contact with a software brand during his time as an IT trainee, he will remember it - and perhaps come to an investment decision more quickly. However, this brand building requires a different message - it cannot be about sales activation.


Recommendations for a balanced targeting strategy


  1. Combine targeting with a broad approach: Use precise targeting for targeted campaigns, but complement these with broader marketing activities to strengthen your brand presence.
  2. Emotional messages: Focus on emotional and memorable messages that go beyond pure targeting and appeal to a broader target group.
  3. Hypothetical scenarios and general market insights: Use hypothetical scenarios or general market insights to demonstrate the effectiveness of wastage.




B2B marketing and Content marketing must be orientated towards long-term perspectives and take this component into account. A balanced approach that also takes scattering losses into account can lead to stronger brands and more stable customer relationships in the long term. Otherwise, you run the risk of simply marketing for the moment. And moments usually pass quickly.

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B2IMPACT Editorial Office
Effect and result for your B2B marketing - We summarise the extensive knowledge of our agency into exciting content morsels. As a unit of WEKA Industrie Medien, B2IMPACT specialises in B2B marketing and all its aspects.
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