B2B Marketing In The Embedded Systems Industry – All You Need To Know

B2B marketing is changing fast. Despite its dynamic nature, the fundamentals of B2B marketing remain the same. At the same time, there are certain industries where you need to – at times – think outside the box to make marketing work. One such industry is Embedded Systems.

Skalegrow is a marketing agency that specializes in the embedded systems industry. With experience in leading marketing teams in multi-million dollar embedded systems companies with a global footprint, we know what it takes to make marketing work in such a niche space. In this blog post, we explore:

  • The misconceptions about marketing in the embedded systems industry.
  • The marketing tactics that work in the space as in the other industries.
  • A few marketing strategies that are unique to the embedded systems industry.

….and more. Let’s get started


What is the embedded systems industry?

Embedded systems refer to devices that leverage both hardware and software components to perform specific tasks. The easiest to understand among them are devices such as mobile phones and smartwatches we use daily. Almost every electronic system can be considered an embedded system.

However, a mobile phone or a washing machine are examples of embedded systems in the B2C sector. When it comes to B2B, embedded systems would mostly take the form of components that go into an end product.

For example, imagine a car with a stereo system. There is sophisticated hardware and software behind it that help it function properly. It is often provided by another company specializing in audio systems for automobiles (and not the car manufacturing company itself). Another example is a memory card used in gaming consoles (like Play Station or Xbox). They are often sourced by manufacturers from other vendors who come with core expertise in memory hardware and software solutions.


Characteristics of B2B marketing in the embedded systems industry

The embedded systems industry, in general, has lagged behind other industries when it comes to doing active marketing. Except for a few elites globally, not many have excelled at using marketing as a growth lever. There are multiple reasons for this such as product-led growth, technical nature of the products, sales/network-led growth, etc.

Here, let us look at some of the key characteristics of marketing in B2B embedded systems companies:

  • The target audience is primarily engineers and hence requires all marketing materials to reflect the technical and engineering details of the company’s products and solutions.
  • There might not be much historical data if you are in a niche space within embedded systems. This could negatively impact your marketing hypotheses. For instance, for SEO, you might not find enough keyword volume even for core keywords in your domain.
  • End users and influencers have more say in the decision making process since product compatibility and fit are mostly decided by engineers who evaluate the solution end to end.
  • The target audience for embedded systems companies does not appear in common marketing channels as often as those in the SaaS or IT world.

These characteristics make it more challenging to do effective marketing in embedded systems compared to the other sectors in the B2B space.


Misconceptions about B2B marketing in embedded systems

One of the primary reasons why many embedded systems manufacturers don’t do aggressive marketing is because of a few misconceptions. They include:

  • A good product sells by itself.
  • Techniques like SEO and content marketing do not work for B2B embedded systems companies.
  • Storytelling doesn’t have an impact on your target audience since they care only about the technical features of the product.
  • All marketing should be focused on the technical features of the solutions.
  • Aesthetics and visual effects do not have a place in embedded systems marketing.

I can add more to the above list. But you get the point I am trying to communicate here. If you are unable to make your marketing work as an embedded systems business, it’s not because marketing doesn’t work for your industry. Rather, it’s because you are not doing it the right way.


A few more examples of B2B embedded systems companies

In addition to the two examples we mentioned before, here are a few more businesses that fall into the embedded systems category:

  • A company like Sony that sells sensors to mobile phone manufacturers.
  • Companies that sell processors to industrial PC manufacturers.
  • A company like Cisco that offers hardware infrastructure products.
  • Companies like ABB that offer SCADA products.
  • A business that offers cables and connectors for embedded devices.

In essence, B2B embedded systems companies deliver the components required for OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) to build their products.


Conventional B2B marketing channels for embedded systems

As mentioned earlier, just because embedded systems is a niche industry, it doesn’t mean that the conventional marketing techniques don’t work. Only that the approach would vary.

For example, in an industry like IT, the core keywords you would want to target for SEO would have a high volume (in several thousand). On the other hand, in an embedded systems company, even the best keywords might have only a volume of a few hundred.

However, this doesn’t mean that SEO doesn’t work in your space. If the competition or keyword difficulty is low, it means that it is easier to rank for that keyword. This in turn means that it is far easier to rank a page or website in the space compared to a commoditized industry like IT.

With that in mind, here are the conventional marketing channels that will work for the embedded systems industry too:

  1. Website
  2. SEO & content marketing
  3. Video marketing
  4. Email marketing
  5. Organic social media marketing
  6. Paid ads
  7. Event marketing
  8. Webinar marketing
  9. PR

B2B marketing for embedded systems companies

1. Website

The website is the face of a business. Some of the best practices when it comes to maintaining a website for your embedded systems product are:

  • Products should be easily discoverable. They should be listed under logical categories.
  • Since the engineering performance and features of the products matter a lot, make sure to list down all the key details that your target audience would look for.
  • Add any necessary tools on your website that will guide your target audience with a task related to your niche (check out this edition of The Skalegrow Newsletter to learn more about this hack).
  • Proper internal linking is important as in the case of other industries. Related products and solutions should be linked to in pages such as blog posts, press releases, and video landing pages.

2. SEO & content marketing

The approach for SEO and content marketing would remain more or less the same for embedded systems companies. I recommend you go through the below articles to learn the comprehensive approach to content marketing in B2B.

Getting Started With SEO-led Content In 3 Days


Content Clustering And Repurposing – Building A Scalable B2B Content Strategy


However, here are a few best practices you need to follow when it comes to leveraging SEO and content marketing to promote your embedded systems business.

  • Don’t blindly go with keyword volume alone. Often, some core keywords might not show enough volume in a keyword tool like Ahrefs. This is because keyword tools find keyword volume based on an estimate they arrive at by crawling a small section of the web (and not the entire web). Our experience at Skalegrow has taught us that some low-volume keywords can generate high traffic, especially if they trending.
  • Supporting content is extremely important. Though the technical specifications of your solutions matter a lot, augmenting them with highly visual content like brochures, demo videos, images, etc., can help a lot.
  • Product images and videos are a must-have.
  • It is necessary to talk about how your product will function in your customers’ systems. If possible, show a video demonstration. For example, if you are selling cables and connectors to be used in a robot, demonstrate how they would work in a real robot.

3. Video marketing

For embedded system components, showing demonstrations and illustrations of how the products work can give you an extra push to convince your target audience. And videos are an excellent way to do it.

In addition to product demos and videos, below are some of the other  types of videos you can create:

  • Educational videos
  • Company culture/employer branding videos
  • Application videos
  • Event-related videos

Please refer the below articles to learn how to craft an effective video marketing strategy:

The Only B2B Video Marketing Strategy You Need

4. Email marketing

Email marketing is one of the highest ROI-generating channels in the embedded systems space. Since timing is of extreme importance in the industry (by timing, I mean the need for a prospect to buy a component), having an email database that you can use for various marketing and remarketing activities is necessary.

Keep the following in mind while doing email marketing:

  • Do not just promote your products always in your emails. Keep it a healthy mix of educational, news, and product-related content.
  • Be regular with your email campaigns. Don’t just make them related to product launches or funding news. Offer value in the form of diversified content like blog posts, videos, guides, etc.
  • If possible, segment your audience based on their firmographic and demographic characteristics. This will help you target different sets of people for different products or campaigns.

Also read: How To Integrate Email Marketing With Other B2B Marketing Channels

5. Organic social media marketing

In this era of ‘dark social’, organic social media marketing has become a necessity than a luxury. If you are in the B2B space, LinkedIn is by far the most effective social media platform. The principles to follow when it comes to organic social media marketing for embedded systems businesses are similar to the other channels – you need to keep your content diverse while still focusing on the technical specifications of your solutions.

Check out the below article to learn how to create content for LinkedIn organic marketing:

How To Create Content For LinkedIn Organic Marketing [With 10+ Examples And 5 Templates]

6. Paid ads

When it comes to paid ads for embedded systems, Google is an effective channel since it is always associated with some search intent. LinkedIn works too if you know how to implement ads the right way on the platform. The intention of this article is not to dive deep into Google ads and LinkedIn ads strategy. But here are a few tips you can follow while running ads on Google and LinkedIn:

  • On Google ads, focus on attracting a broad audience in the beginning by using broad match and phrase match keywords. Then retarget them using more niche and pointed keywords.
  • Apply the retargeting tactic on LinkedIn as well. Make the content for the ads highly visual and if possible, showcase how your solutions work in the customer environment.
  • Be sure to make the copy of the ads reflect industry terms. You can mine such terms using techniques like competitor analysis, target audience research, keyword tools, or a website like SparkToro.
  • Always try different variations of ads in terms of copy, creative, keywords, and targeting.
  • If you are targeting a specific segment, make the landing page targeted for that particular segment.

7. Event marketing

Identifying events where your ideal customers hang out is one of the best ways to interact with your potential customers. For instance, if robotics companies are one of your target segments, you can participate in events like the Automate Show.

Some of the methods to find the right events for your niche are:

  • Checking out the events your competitors have attended (this can be found on their website or social media posts).
  • Looking at event listing websites like Events Eye.
  • A simple Google search can also give you some useful events.
  • Look for event mentions on platforms like LinkedIn and X.
  • Keep checking the websites of event organizers in your space. Many of them also have an event alert email system which you can subscribe to for regular updates on upcoming events.

8. Webinar marketing

When it comes to webinar marketing, I suggest you read the below article to learn everything related to it.

Webinar Marketing – Everything You Need To Know


In addition to what is discussed in the article, below are a few tips you can follow when you conduct webinars for an engineering audience:

  • If you are discussing your products and solutions in a webinar, make sure to give practical examples and/or demonstrations of how they work in real-life scenarios.
  • While detailing the technical side of things is important, don’t forget to focus on storytelling and the principles of an effective presentation.
  • During post-webinar promotions, it is a good idea to include supporting material in addition to the webinar recording and the slide deck you presented.
  • Run video ads on LinkedIn with a teaser of the webinar. Even if this doesn’t generate a lot of registrations, those who watched or interacted with the ad will become a highly qualified retargeting audience for you.

9. PR marketing

There isn’t much difference in PR marketing for embedded systems companies compared to other industries. The fundamentals more or less remain the same. But here are some best practices:

  • If you are publishing a press release on a new product, explore all the possible ways of making it newsworthy, which will in turn attract more publishers to post your story.
  • While generic PR websites can help, it is always recommended to keep a handy list of publishers who consistently create content in your niche. The closer they are to your domain, the better.
  • Don’t limit yourself to product launches. Stories on entrepreneurship, funding, mergers & acquisitions, etc., attract a ton of engagement.


Related: Get free PR! Tell your story


Niche B2B marketing strategies for embedded systems companies

Given the peculiar nature of products and target audience of the industry, below are the unique marketing strategies embedded systems companies can explore.

  1. Partnership marketing: This is one of the most powerful marketing tactics in the embedded systems space. Since a vast majority of embedded systems companies produce components that go into other devices, partnering with companies that offer other components or bring in complementing capabilities can be a game-changer. Co-marketing activities like co-hosted webinars, social media mentions, panel discussions, etc., are great ways to tap into your partners’ audience.
  2. Industry alliances and media websites: Since the target customers of an embedded systems company might not be always active on platforms like LinkedIn, turning to media websites and magazines that have an audience in your niche is a great marketing tactic. Campaigns like whitepaper blasts, sponsored webinars, events, newsletter promotions, etc., are worth experimenting with.
  3. Third-party lead generation agencies: Depending on how well you use this, it can do good or bad for the company. The key is to find an agency that understands the industry and can generate relevant leads who have some intent to explore your products.
  4. Influencer marketing: Unlike traditional creator-led influencer marketing, in the embedded systems industry, you need to take a different approach. Influencers can be in the form of partners, investors, or external speakers for your webinars and events.
  5. Distributors: This is often not considered a marketing channel. While distributors make delivering products to your target audience in different regions easier, they can also be your marketing partners. Many of these distributors have a large network and reach in their respective regions. Doing different kinds of co-marketing activities is an excellent way to attract a new audience.
  6. Offline advertising: This involves leveraging signages and billboards in the right locations to create awareness about your products or solutions. This can be done at locations like airports, event venues, or even office buildings. The most important aspect here is finding a location where your ideal customers frequently hang out.


Final words about B2B marketing for embedded systems

The embedded systems industry is quite diverse. Every niche within the industry might require a different approach depending on factors such as the product, region & ICP (Ideal Customer profile), maturity of the business, etc. However, the strategies we discussed in this article will help you get started irrespective of the domain you are in.

I recommend implementing what I call the ‘marketing checklist’ where you start by listing down all the possible things you can do in marketing and then knocking off irrelevant (or ineffective) ones till you reach the most important 6 to 7 channels. This will help you debate your biases and outdated thoughts. Please feel free to reach out to us in case you need any help.


Skalegrow – B2B marketing agency

Skalegrow is a B2B marketing agency aimed at making life better for marketing leaders and founders in the B2B space. It was founded to address two key challenges in the B2B world:

  • The lack of quality of services offered by marketing agencies
  • The misalignment of marketing activities with organizational-level goals

By introducing a consultative approach to offering marketing services, Skalegrow strives to make growth simpler and predictable for B2B companies. From SEO-led content and video marketing to LinkedIn organic marketing and email marketing, we offer a complete suite of marketing services to the IT, SaaS, tech, and embedded systems industries. If you are looking for help in implementing marketing tactics that work, please write to us at info@skalegrow.com.

About the author

Naseef KPO

Naseef KPO is the Founder and CEO of Skalegrow. He comes with rich experience across multiple areas of B2B marketing including content marketing, demand generation, SEO, account-based marketing, marketing analytics, revenue attribution, marketing technology, etc. He writes thought-provoking and relevant articles on The Skalegrow Blog and his weekly LinkedIn newsletter Elevate Your Marketing.

Prior to starting Skalegrow, Naseef led large marketing teams in multi-million dollar B2B organizations where he made significant contributions to the topline growth of the business. He has also appeared on numerous podcasts where he shared his thoughts on trending marketing topics such as the application of AI in marketing, startup marketing, ABM, and B2B content marketing, just to name a few. Being the founder of Skalegrow, he is currently focusing on helping its clients stay ahead of their competition by using innovative yet practical marketing tactics.

You can connect with Naseef KPO on LinkedIn.