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Date: 24 January 2017 | Time: 16:49

10 B2B Marketing trends to embrace in 2017

Horizonworks’ managing director Samantha Davidson has provided her top 10 key trends that B2B can expect to embrace in 2017

As 2017 begins, it’s time for marketers to be planning and preparing for the new B2B trends that will be thrown into the marketing matrix in 2017.

From video marketing, to interactive content and visual storytelling, one thing is clear – B2B trends will improve on 2016, using more advanced technology to drive brand awareness and business development.

So, what does B2B marketing look like in 2017? Horizonworks’ managing director Samantha Davidson has provided her top 10 key trends that B2B marketers can expect to embrace in 2017:

1. Video marketing (live streaming)
Video marketing is not a new concept – but live streaming is. Live streaming can open up infinite possibilities, from promoting events in the moment, to product demonstrations. The most successful marketers this year will be the ones who can create both engaging and live content. Ask yourself, what kind of videos would your customer want to see? You could create client testimonials or even staff footage – the opportunities are endless.

2. Marketing automation
For marketers, 2017 will see more businesses utilise marketing automation software. Marketing automation allows for personalised customer experiences, which enables you to nurture business leads and deliver relevant content throughout the purchase journey.

3. Interactive content and visual storytelling
Interactive content will set you apart from competitors. Ask yourself, how can you hold the attention of your audience? Doing so will make your content more interesting. Could you create interactive presentations? Or adapt your website to engage with your customer more effectively? Visual story telling is the new content marketing.

4. Personalisation
Personalisation is about truly listening to your customer and catering to their individual needs. Forget simply selling for the sake of it, provide content that is relevant to each unique customer experience. Doing so will encourage brand loyalty and purchase consideration. In B2B marketing, personalisation is critical.

5. Account Based Marketing (ABM)
ABM is defined simply as a B2B approach that ‘coordinates personalised marketing and sales efforts to open doors and deepen engagement at specific account’ (Jon Miller, CEO and Co-Founder, Engagio), and employs personalized campaigns designed to resonate with each account’. The idea here is that you can align and target desired accounts, combining teams within your company on the same focus. Such approach will ultimately heighten efficiency and effectiveness.

6. Influencer marketing
Influencer marketing involves marketing a product or service to an ‘influencer’ who has the power to sway what customers buy. This is usually attributable to an individuals’ popularity or expertise. Consider influence marketing in terms of traditional word-of-mouth communication but on a much larger scale. The key idea here is to target personalities who are seen to make a difference in the business world.

7. Sales enablement / Closer coordination with sales
Your sales team should have the relevant knowledge, insights and content in order to optimise customer interactions. If you have an in-depth, fully functioning sales team, you can acquire a more complete view of consumer purchase patterns – and this can be fed into your marketing plan.

8. Amazing content
Writing, and writing well, will make a big difference in your marketing approach. Make sure that each member of your team can write in a way that not only accurately portrays your business, values and brand but will also attract and engage the customer.

9. Strategy
A focused and well informed marketing strategy will underpin your business growth and future success. If you do not have a clear and consistent strategy to your marketing approach, this is often where confusion is caused and opportunities are lost. Marketing strategy should be at the heart of everything you do marketing-wise.

10. Analyse, analyse and analyse
Remember – If you don’t measure the impact of your marketing strategy you won’t know how successful it is – You need to constantly review and measure your marketing strategy as time goes on, doing this will mean you can successfully evaluate the impact of your activity and make critical decisions on which marketing activities give you a Return on Investment (ROI).

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