A few days ago, Mantis Research and BuzzSumo published the results of their latest survey regarding the use of original research in marketing. The State of Original Research for Marketing 2019 survey was fielded in May and June of this year and produced 644 responses from global marketers. Forty-seven percent of the respondents were from the United States, and 70% were affiliated with B2B companies.
Both Michele Linn with Mantis Research and Chris McCormick with BuzzSumo have written excellent summaries of the research results. You can find Michele’s summary here and Chris’ summary here. If you’re a B2B marketer, I encourage you to read both of these articles, and even better, take the time to review the full survey report.
In the 2019 survey, 39% of the respondents said they had published the results of original research within the 12 months preceding the survey. The comparable percentage in the 2018 version of the survey was 47%. Chris McCormick believes this drop is primarily due to a shift in the demographics of the survey pool rather than a decline in research use, and I tend to agree with his view.
Are you looking for new ways to beef up your digital marketing strategy?
While B2C strategies get significant focus, through the latest new feature releases and consumer tools, B2B brands need to implement more specific processes which will help guide their target consumers through the lead generation and sales process.
There are a range of considerations to within this – but what’s the best approach for B2B organizations to take when implementing an effective digital strategy?
That’s what this infographic from Imaginasium is about, showcasing an array of key stats and insights to help you construct a more effective approach.
And while a couple of the points are easier said than done (“Build a content marketing juggernaut”), the overall strategic guidance will help direct you on the path to developing a more effective, beneficial, strategy.
The B2B market has seen significant growth and development in recent years, and it’s not hard to trace the original source – the advance of the internet and the various technologies that surround it. It’s no secret that pretty much every company has an active online presence these days, and those who take proper advantage of that situation stand to gain a lot when it comes to B2B interactions.
Not all strategies in this sector are equal though – some will work much better than others, especially today.
Though a somewhat controversial topic among marketers, inbound marketing remains a powerful tool in the hands of those who use it right. It can generate strong leads through the regular posting of content that’s relevant to other businesses. There are many channels that can be utilized to drive traffic to the content you’re generating and posting, and it’s a good idea to look into all of them in detail before committing to anyone in particular. Because in the long run, you might not have that much of an opportunity to change things after getting started with a particular method.
If you think artificial intelligence (AI) is just another buzzword, you’re both right and wrong. Let me explain.
AI has been a hot topic in business to business (B2B) marketing for several years now and for good reason. From improving account identification to using intent-level data to better understand prospects and customers to being able to deliver a one-to-one connection at scale, AI is the driving force behind much of the B2B marketing innovation you see today.
There are real and tangible ways that AI is changing how we market to our customers. In these instances, the hype clearly lives up to the buzz. In fact, more than 84% of B2B marketers and salespeople are using, implementing, planning to use or evaluating AI. However, where the hype falls short is in actual usage. There is a clear disconnect between understanding the value of AI and implementation. This disconnect in adoption often stems from barriers such as cost, budget constraints and skills.
So, how can B2B marketers overcome those barriers and embrace AI? Having incorporated AI technologies into our own services and marketing at Demandbase, here are three of my tips on doing so in your B2B marketing strategy.
Tip 1: Understand your challenges.
First of all, it’s important to note that marketers don’t need to “learn” AI any more than they need to learn Python or Java. Instead, marketers need to have a solid understanding of what challenges they need to solve. For example, would you like to better understand your customers, better reach your customers or better measure your campaigns? Once you have identified your challenges, you can determine which technology solutions can help solve those challenges.
Before I started researching the content for this article, I thought that email was going to be a critical channel for B2B content marketing. But what I found wasn’t exactly what I had anticipated.
Some of the most surprising findings came from The State of B2B Email Marketing report, released earlier this year. It found that 59 percent of B2B companies DID NOT use email marketing. That’s a bit shocking…To say the least.
Emails are an important communication channel as well as a lead generation channel in B2B. Even still, a lot of companies choose to avoid it to communicate. Let alone nurture, and sell to their audiences.
Ever since I’ve found this amazing stat, I wanted to discover the reasons preventing B2B businesses from using emails.
I’ll share my findings in this article. This, along with five research-based B2B email marketing techniques to help you increase the effectiveness of digital marketing campaigns.
Why Do So Many Companies fail to Capitalize on B2B Email Marketing?
Let’s make one thing clear from the start: email marketing is hard because you have to follow a lot of rules and be aware of the quickly evolving best practices.
To be able to improve the performance of your marketing with emails, you have to have a documented strategy that outlines the types of emails to send out, content calendar, and many other things. The importance of having a documented strategy is hard to overstate since it provides that much-needed vision and ensures consistency.
The case for long-term thinking has been building since Les Binet and Peter Field’s highly influential IPA report, ‘The Long and the Short of It’. They showed that long-term strategies are more effective at moving the dials that really matter – market share, profit, revenue and so on.
Binet and Field’s evidence is largely based on business-to-consumer (B2C) examples. But a new survey of 600 business-to-business (B2B) marketers reinforces the findings. Those who have outperformed their competition over the last two years are twice as likely to think long-term.
The gap between knowing and doing
The business needs quick results. But it takes time to create lasting business impact.
When I talk to senior marketers today, this tension is right at the surface. There’s a curious gap between what we believe and what we can put into action.
Our new research conducted with Marketing Week shows that, in intent at least, the majority of B2B marketers are still ‘classicists’. When asked for the main drivers of effectiveness, audience targeting is comfortably marketers’ highest rated factor, followed by value proposition, then creative. We still believe, then, in the classic skills of segmenting, targeting and positioning.
B2B marketing trends are like a compass. While you move forward in your business endeavors, marketing trends help to keep you on course.
Trends shed light on what marketing strategies and tools work and help dictate where to spend your brand’s resources.
In a survey from Content Marketing Institute on the future of B2B marketing, 55% of the most successful marketers predicted an increase in overall marketing spend in 2019.
While increased budgets may seem like mere wishful thinking, there is solid evidence to back it up. When asked how they would rate their marketing strategy compared with one year ago, 70% rated it as more successful.
How can you say the same thing about your own marketing? The answer lies in knowing (and using) the latest B2B marketing trends.
We’ve compiled a list of the must-know marketing trends that will keep your strategy on track and profitable.
10 B2B Marketing Trends That You Need in Your Strategy 1. Local Search
SEO has become a major part of any digital marketing strategy. But when choosing keywords, many brands cast their net too wide. And this has led lost opportunities. How so?
46% of searches performed on Google are local. That means that instead of searching for “B2B financial software company,” a large percentage search for “B2B financial software company in San Francisco” or whatever city they are in.
Don’t get me wrong — general keywords have an important place in your strategy. But the more locally conscious you are with your keywords, the more you can key in on audiences in your local area.
Over the past few years, Instagram has climbed the social media ladder, making its way up to one of (if not the) most popular platform for B2C marketers.
With the rise of Instagram Influencers paired with its offering of marketing tools for community engagement and shopping (like Shopping Tags, Checkout on Instagram, etc.), Instagram supports businesses well. In particular, these tools can help B2C businesses reach their ROI goals on the platform – but what about B2B brands?
Instagram isn’t just a place for B2C brands; it offers a great deal of value for B2B brands as well. For example: Instagram is a great place to spread brand awareness for any brand. B2B brands can also use features like Stories or their bio link to drive website traffic or share UGC content to connect with their audience.
Last week, we held an #SMTLive Twitter chat to discuss all the ways B2B brands can find success on Instagram.
We talked about:
Common struggles for B2B marketers on Instagram
Goals that Instagram can help B2B brands reach
Different types of B2B content strategy for Instagram
Keep reading for the recap of our chat, including great tips to help you improve your B2B Instagram marketing strategy.
1. Common struggles for B2B marketers on Instagram
What do B2B brands struggle with the most on Instagram?
Of course, as all of this goes, content strategy and brand goals depend on the business. Every brand will experience different issues and will need to develop a unique strategy to align with their goals, but there still are a few common struggles most B2B brands face.
If you are sci-fi film buff, Charlton Heston’s desperate plea, “Soylent Green is people!” from the classic movie (it’s dark, overwrought and partially in fun) is something today’s marketers should note. Your return on investment is dependent on people because people are essential to the modern B2B marketing strategy that actually drives real ROI.
I’m launching this thread because of a combination of client observations, conversations I’ve been having with rising stars, developments in AI and recent announcements from certain tech companies regarding their own learnings about marketing’s impact on earnings and business health. It’s become clear to me that personnel challenges remain a basic, stubborn impediment still keeping many companies from making substantive, scalable marketing progress. There are two core elements at issue:
Just as they have been with most things digital, B2C marketers are ahead of their B2B counterparts in adopting the latest social marketing trends. While our B2C friends have been leveraging social media stories since they originated on Snapchat several years ago, it’s taking the B2B world a little longer to figure out where they fit in the digital marketing mix.
Why should B2B Marketers Care?
Social stories are the newest way social platforms are trying to engage their users- and they’re working. Research shows that social media stories are growing at a faster pace than newsfeeds and offer a new way for marketers to advertise. As businesses try to personalize their brands, marketing via social channels is more important than ever. The new story formats allow the brand message to be told in a logical, linear pattern, rather than having it split across newsfeeds.
With over 20 years of business, sales, and consulting experience SMS is capable of serving many market sectors. We provide the field level support needed to generate results and grow your business. Other companies may provide appointment setting services; whereas SMS will partner with you to grow revenue.
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