There is plenty of competition in the B2B marketing field and marketers can stay ahead of their rivals by keeping themselves updated about SaaS forecasts and industry trends. This article aims to help you by examining the dominant trends that are expected to shape B2B marketing in 2017 and beyond.
Lead Generation Using LinkedIn
B2B companies are increasingly using social media to promote their brand and generate leads. For example, LinkedIn has become a valuable network for B2B marketers as a good 94% of them distribute content on it. For this reason, LinkedIn accounts for 80% of the social leads obtained by B2B marketers.
LinkedIn is used by almost all professionals globally and hence is a great place to target B2B consumers. Plus, this network boasts an impressive record for converting visitors to leads and you should definitely include it in your marketing strategy.
The advantage is you can go beyond LinkedIn’s organic reach feature to attract new customers. This network offers its own highly targeted PPC system that has proved profitable for B2B enterprises.
Don’t make the mistake of keeping your marketing channels separated. The trend is to use cross-platform methods. For instance, you can use content marketing to get subscribers for your newsletters and email marketing to boost your social media presence.
Today’s customers are informed and savvy, and carefully select services and products after due research. Therefore, B2B marketers need to pay importance to customer experience.
A Walker Research report states that customer experience will become an important factor for brand differentiation by the year 2020. To offer a delightful experience, you need to stay tuned to customer needs and preferences. Use a social monitoring tool to track the comments and feedback of your customers about your brand and the competition. This can help you to understand the requirements and issues of your buyers and prospects based on which you can personalize and individualize your marketing strategies.
Personalization involves using a multi-tiered strategy to engage a specific prospect instead of a demographic group. It includes using the customer’s name and directly addressing their needs and demands. You can use suitable personalization software to make this strategy successful. This type of software analyzes a user’s cached browser information and IP address to serve personalized pages to specific visitors. The advantage is personalized pages can boost your conversion rate significantly. For this reason, personalization has become a huge trend.
This marketing method appeals to the senses of consumers. You can provide a delightful experience by creating a close bond with your customers.
The method includes hosting online events like video conferences and webinars to boost real-time communication and collaboration. You can also use networking events and trade shows to introduce your product and team.
Storytelling can be an important part of experiential marketing. You can use engaging stories to describe how your service or product resolved a customer issue and utilize dramatic imagery to appeal to the reader’s senses.
B2B consumers are active buyers who do plenty of research about your product and company before they decide to invest their money. They form opinions and ideas about your brand based on the content they read. Therefore, it is essential to deliver the right messages to the targeted audience at the appropriate time.
You can do this by using marketing automation solutions such as Act-On, Pardot, Marketo and others. These platforms enable you to measure, streamline, and automate important workflows and tasks. This can make it easy for your team to nurture and engage leads and prospects with relevant content.
Marketing automation is constantly evolving and is an excellent strategy for B2B marketing in any industry. Take care to select a suitable platform to attribute, score, and nurture leads to boost your company’s revenue.
Live Streaming and Video
Video has become a popular medium and it hogs more than 70% of internet traffic. B2B marketers are also using live streaming with the help of apps such as Instagram Live Video, Facebook Live, and Twitter’s Periscope. Videos have become popular because they enable the audience to understand the information easily. For this reason, marketers are using interesting and engaging videos to present their product, brand, and employees. The best part is you can create effective videos with a small budget. Register on YouTube, iMovie, or Canva and create engaging short videos and GIFs.
Most customers wish to relate to people and not businesses. Therefore, companies need to create an authentic presence and voice. This can make your customers and prospects trust your service or product and brand.
You can prepare for employee advocacy by empowering your staff members including marketing, sales, and customer support executives to share brand content on their networks. Employees have numerous relevant influencer and customer connections. You can encourage them to spread your brand messages among these important connections to add authenticity to your company’s image.
Your company’s top executives including the CEO can become active advocates. They can play the role of thought leaders by sharing useful content. Thought leaders are perceived to be authorities and go-to sources in any industry as they offer insightful ideas and information that are lapped up hungrily by the audience.
B2B marketers need to work smarter and not just harder. They need to look at their strategies and methods from a wide perspective to integrate more effective channels. You can beat the competition by investing in suitable platforms, distributing targeted content on multiple channels, and providing an enjoyable buying experience for consumers.