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B2B Marketing for Used Industrial Equipment

It may not have the glamor or splendour of fine art or antiques, but selling used industrial assets is big business. Everything from hand tools and agricultural equipment, to huge multi-million dollar production facilities are sold by specialist auctioneers and traders globally all year round.

So, as a marketer what do we need to know about selling in industrial B2B markets?


What really matters to buyers?

Put yourself in the shoes of your prospective customer. What really matters to them? In most B2B sales, buyers are looking for:

  • Reliability, from both the asset their buying and the entity they are doing business with.
  • A fair price, when buying second-hand, price is often lead by ‘what someone is willing to pay’ – there are no RRP’s in used sales.
  • Simplicity, if the purchase process is complex and onerous for the person managing the transaction, there will need to be bigger incentives to get them past the finishing line. After all, if the deal will take weeks of hard slog around the negotiating table the proposition will likely need to be very attractive.
  • Availability, this is an important one. Sure, a used asset purchaser can source new, generally at a higher price, but there is lead time for new equipment – especially for custom built production equipment. How much money will your buyer save by having their production up and running in weeks rather than months?

Why what matters to buyers should matter to you

It’s important to understand the difference between a business to business transaction and that of a business to consumer sale. You see, there is far less emotion in a B2B transaction – it’s generally perfunctory, just to serve a purpose, there’s no love or affection for a bottling line – just a need to get the job done.

We shouldn’t forget that we are still selling to people, and we all have buttons to press, it’s just important to recognise that we’re not appealing to a buyer’s inner most desires but to other emotions instead.

Review your most recent marketing piece – have you conveyed the USP’s from the customer’s perspective? Did you showcase how much time they could save compared to buying new? Did you give them a price comparable to highlight the financial savings? Look for ways to integrate these messages into your next marketing piece – it might just save your sale notification from the dreaded delete key!

So back to our buyer…

What does he or she really want? Most of us are looking for simplicity – the least complicated route between setting our objectives and fulfilling them. Also, we all want to look great in front our boss, right? Appearing to achieve the impossible is a good look for sure; if they can source the right equipment, at the right price, saving money and time, they will look better than good! But….

They must have the confidence that they can deliver, else the end result could be a huge waste of time and resource, for zero return (new equipment is suddenly feeling a lot more attractive!).

So what gives a person the confidence to buy used assets

Assuming we have the basics covered:

  • Great information on what’s available.
  • Complete specifications and documentation to allow the customer to evaluate the suitability.
  • Details on how, when and where to buy.
  • Clear instructions on ‘what to do next’ – e.g. ‘Register for Auction Sale’.

We need to think beyond the actual product for a moment, what do you do differently that will help them? Does your business offer:

  • Amazing customer care with customer testimonials to prove it?
  • Financial packages, to help a customer arrange finance if needed?
  • Guidance and advice on how to buy used equipment, giving them confidence throughout an unfamiliar process?
  • Warranties, if you can provide a guarantee that the equipment will work make sure you have this covered in your advert.

These are just some of the ways you could improve your marketing for selling used assets in industrial B2B markets. If you would like support from a B2B specialist marketer contact me today, I will be happy to discuss ways I can help you improve your marketing campaigns. You can reach me by email or call +1 860-210-8088.