FIVE B2B TRENDS TO WATCH IN 2020
As a result of technological improvements that have brought about dramatic changes in the past decade, modern B2B buyers are displaying significantly different behaviors than in the past. For instance, it’s interesting to see that decision makers are a lot younger than they used to be, as more than 70% of millennials are included in B2B buying decisions. B2B researchers do at least 12 searches online before engaging with a website, hoping for the same high-quality digital experience they get when making B2C purchases.
As part of this, B2B businesses have to create an experience that gets decision makers to notice them, and the digital space offers endless opportunities to do just that. Here are a few ways you can market your business more successfully in 2020.
Engage Your Prospects With Personalized Communications
An astounding 72% of buyers expect B2B companies to personalize communications in a way that suits their needs. Remember, these buyers will quickly switch to another company that they believe caters to their requirements better.
Hence, all communications should be tailored to the individual buyer’s preferences. Learn more about your target markets to drive sales effectively and grow your customer base as a result. If you are worried about how you can craft such content for all your audience segments, various marketing automation programs can help you ensure personalization at scale.
Reenergize Your Email Marketing
According to HubSpot research, email is already considered the preferred method of business communication for most business decision makers, and 2020 promises even better opportunities for growth.
Email marketing company MailChimp studied emails from 50 industries to find out that the average open rate is only 21.33%. But this problem can be overcome with dynamic content and AI, making your email marketing stronger and more useful than ever before.
These technologies take email personalization a step further by not only serving different content to different segments as part of the same campaign, but also waiting until the exact moment of open to gather other appropriate data points to regulate the content served. Dynamic email providers can even find out if a recipient is currently traveling when they open an email.
That’s why it is now more important than ever for fast-growing B2B companies to invest in email marketing tools that can help them leverage these technologies. Examples of these types of email software tools include Campaign Monitor, Customer.io and SharpSpring, to name only a few.
Invest In Your B2B Social Media Strategy
Nearly 223 million Americans are on social media in 2019. While this pool isn’t likely to grow in the near future, it can still do a lot for your business. B2B companies often overlook social media marketing as a viable way of finding new clients because the industries they operate in have long-winding and complex sales cycles.
But this doesn’t mean that Facebook and Instagram can’t help you. Include these platforms in your new social media strategy to build better brand recognition and solidify authority in your niche. However, it is essential to understand that B2B companies must take a strategic approach and execute their social media marketing campaigns with precision to be successful.
Make sure you have defined objectives for your social presence — for example, would you like it to generate better-targeted leads, build your brand or enhance your customer service? Next, identify and cater to a targeted audience so you are sharing info with businesses that are in your area of expertise.
And finally, choose the right social media platform to reach them. The key is finding a suitable social media channel where most, if not all, of your target audience is already present — and for the B2B industry, this usually means LinkedIn. That’s where 80% of all business leads originate and why 94% of marketers use it to publish content.
Refine Your Content Marketing Efforts
Blogs, articles and cornerstone content for your website are all well and good, but the future is all about providing something new and exciting. This means investing in video, virtual reality, augmented reality and interactive content.
And in case you need more incentive, Google is ranking video content higher than text-based content now. After all, videos bring together audio, animation, graphs, live footage and text to create an immersive experience that can teach your leads more about your offerings than any webpage can.
In other words, your leads can experience your products and services in vivid detail with the help of video and interactive content. That’s why many businesses are expected to start using video through virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and film to tell their brand’s story, growing it into a $160 billion industry by 2023. So far, 93% of surveyed enterprises that have adopted VR say that it has had a positive impact on their business, while 88% have expressed satisfaction with AR and mixed reality (MR) as well.
Use Chatbots For B2B Lead Generation
Imagine using Facebook Messenger to book demos, resolve customer service issues and, of course, discover new leads. In short, custom-made chatbots present a whole new world of opportunities for B2B brands.
For example, a broad selection of templates can guide your chatbot on how to communicate with a potential client and what questions to ask to ensure their complete satisfaction.
Research predicts that businesses will invest $400 million in chatbots in 2021, while a Business Insider report shares that 80% of enterprises will want personalized chatbots by 2020, saving them up to $38 billion in the process.
Most of these trends in B2B marketing are deeply rooted in B2C marketing, and not without good reason. Behind every B2B brand, you will see people who expect authentic, timely and personalized communication that helps them develop their expertise and achieve their goals. Invest in research, and get to know your target audience better to ensure the quality they deserve.
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