We’re about to take the plunge into 2015, a brand-new year with brand-new opportunities. As you consider your resolutions, make sure that staying ahead of upcoming B2B marketing trends tops your list. Powerful new technology and strategies will enable marketers to take their efforts to new levels, with improved targeting, smoother automated campaigns, and more mobile. Let’s take a look at what 2015 has in store for us and what you should be doing to keep pace.
Micro-target Your Messages:
Gone are the days of “spray-and-pray” marketing with one message and massive audiences. Buyers are coming to expect that you truly understand them, their industry, and their challenges specifically. Making sure they get that impression from your personalized, customized marketing messages is vital in building a 1:1 relationship and moving them through the sales funnel. This type of strategy requires clean, detailed data work (I say while I grimace—this can be a challenge, but getting this work done on your databases up-front will pay off immensely down the road).
Document Your Content Marketing Strategy:
Currently, 83 percent of B2B marketers have a content marketing strategy, but only 35 percent have it documented. It’s the second piece of that statistic that is expected to grow significantly next year. According to the Content Marketing Institute, “B2B marketers who have a documented strategy are more effective and less challenged with every aspect of content marketing when compared with their peers who only have a verbal strategy or no strategy at all.”
Leverage Paid Placements:
More social networks are moving in the direction of paid media, and more B2B marketers are following suit. Free reach has become very difficult for businesses. You’ll want to do some educated experimenting in this arena with different platforms and targeting strategies in an effort to engage difficult-to-reach audience members, and see where you gain the most traction. Remember, strong, concise calls to action are key.
We need to remember that enterprise decision makers expect the same mobile-friendly, integrated digital marketing experiences from B2B marketers that they receive from B2C marketers. And mobile devices continue to take on new meaning—Forrester predicts that by 2020, one in five sales will result from data collected from wearable devices. Your emails and websites need to be responsively designed and programmed to accommodate the devices they will be used on, and the content you share via social (which is likely to be viewed on mobile devices) should be bite-sized. Create smaller images with key nuggets of information instead of posting a full infographic.
Automate Your Entire Campaigns:
B2B businesses have been embracing marketing automation, which will continue well into 2015. The challenge for some has been truly leveraging one, all-encompassing marketing automation platform to its fullest capacity without relying on supplemental tools and processes that they may have had in place previously. Take a long, hard look at all of your marketing tools: Are there any redundancies in features? Are there opportunities to more tightly integrate them? Or to decommission some?
2015 promises to be an exciting year in the marketing world, and we’re looking forward to see what changes come next!