B2B marketing trends for 2020 – Part I

B2B Marketing Trends 2020 – Part 1

We’ve scoured the web to find the most compelling B2B marketing trends for you to consider implementing in your own 2020 strategy. Now we should say that they won’t all be suitable for your business, start by picking those that fit best and run with them.

This time it’s (very) personal

Customers now expect the same level of personalisation from their B2B brand interactions as they get from their B2C exchanges. And why shouldn’t they?

As a general rule, the more personalised the method, frequency and content of your communications, the better the results will be. Econsultancy produced a report supporting this, finding that 94% of companies who personalised their website saw a rise in conversion rates.[1]

Hyper-targeting takes personalisation a step further. Marketers identify their ideal customer and target them with highly customised messaging across the mediums they’re most responsive to.

Platforms that facilitate hyper-targeting include Facebook, Google Ads and email. Utilising this strategy saves you money and helps you to maximise ROI by not wasting time reaching out to people who won’t buy your product or service – simple.

The ever-evolving inbox

For 83% of marketers, email remains their preferred way to contact businesses.[2] Given the strength of that stat and recent email advances, we can only see that figure rising.

Email marketing software is continually developing. On a basic level, most providers now offer scheduling, personalised sends and automated campaigns. Other more technical tools are utilising AI to make email a stronger and more useful channel than ever before.

AI uses data to personalise, segment and optimise subject lines and body copy (dynamic content), give precise product recommendations and run triggered email campaigns. Triggered emails fire when a customer completes a particular action and tend to have higher open rates, deliver a better ROI and help to build subscriber engagement.

If email forms a big part of your B2B marketing strategy, it’s essential to invest in tools that allow you to leverage these intelligent technologies.

Bullseye!

Blanket campaigns no longer cut the mustard and account-based marketing (ABM) suits the move toward creating content and experiences for certain buying audiences.

Perfectly blending sales and marketing, ABM is one of the most impactful strategies. But, despite its increased popularity over the last few years, it’s still often overlooked and misunderstood.

ABM concentrates resource on a set of specific target accounts. Each account is served a personalised campaign designed to address the needs and motivations of the business and its key decision makers.

A proactive approach, ABM provides an effective way of drumming up new business rather than putting all your eggs in the inbound basket. It generates higher quality leads, improves your reputation and builds better customer relationships. The ROI it delivers is also higher than other more traditional methods. In a study by ITSMA and the ABM Leadership Alliance, 89% of respondents confirmed this.[3]

Under the influence

You might think influencer marketing is reserved for B2C brands, but you’d be mistaken. Although it does take on a slightly different form in a B2B setting.

The “cool” social media star is not the right person to be selling your business’ products or services. Decision makers want to hear from trusted individuals who are known for their work and have clout within their industry. They could be CEOs, founders, respected analysts, highly-rated employees, authors or keynote speakers.

B2B influencer marketing ventures beyond the bounds of social media, into events, live webchats, co-written content and partnering with podcasts. It can also take a purer, less expensive form in testimonials or case studies. Remember, consumers are much more likely to buy based on a recommendation, in fact 93% say online reviews affect their purchasing decisions.[4]

Exercising patience is critical if you do choose to try influencer marketing. Typically, this approach takes longer to deliver results in the B2B arena, with high ticket values, longer purchase journeys and multiple stakeholders all playing a part.

That’s your lot for now but join us for Part II coming soon, where we’ll be discussing the likes of voice search, chatbots, and more.

And as always, if you’d like help implementing any of the trends we’ve covered here, please do get in touch.

Can we help you with marketing, branding, strategy, or just want to chat? Then get in touch!