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TRENDS IN B2B MARKETING

The major contributors to an economy, be it a highly developed or a developing one, are the companies which are doing business in the ICT arena i.e. Information and Communication Technology arena. They influence national policies and can make or break the economic health of a country. The usual consensus is that there is a dearth of good marketing policies in the B2B industry but it still remains a tougher nut to crack due to its intangible, service-oriented nature. A major aspect of B2B marketing is that it’s always mostly indirect in nature and a potent marketing plan is the spine of sales when it comes to the B2B arena.  The businesses and the technology that backs it are constantly on the evolving curve and therefore, the marketing teams responsible for reaching out to these businesses for potential deals also need to be their toes.

 

 

Experiential Marketing:

The marketing of today is focused on shooting messages to the target customers regarding the features and benefits of your product or services but what if the customer can actually get a feel of your offering and experience it in its basic form via experimental settings or mobile phones. The impact created would certainly be superior and therefore, it can be integrated into a company’s marketing schemes via trade fairs or a live demo. Accordingly, even the staff ought to be trained to learn how to capitalize on customers experiencing such a scheme.

 

 

Social Media:

No marketing tool has a better reach than that of a social media platform. Be it a Facebook post or relevant tweets and proprietary hashtags on the subject to which your product/service is related, the impressions are created across the world. Lately, LinkedIn has raked in the tremendous amount of business relevance and has evolved into an important platform for businesses looking to propagate their product or services. This kind of marketing is a preliminary step to ‘Social Selling’ which is fast becoming one of the primary selling techniques employed by the B2B firm.

 

 

Marketing Automation:

Automation is a trend in virtually every industry domain and its only time till it forays into the marketing departments. Tasks such as maintaining and updating customer database, processing and nurturing leads and handling social media campaigns all at once can be achieved via marketing automation. It cuts down the man-hours which are spent on doing monotonous data collection jobs and allows the marketers to focus more on the creative aspect.

 

 

Account Marketing:

Account Marketing basically refers to running separate marketing campaigns to appease single or similar accounts which generate higher revenue numbers. The agenda here to keep the marketing strategy focused on pre-selected target customers rather than wasting resources on trying to capture the entire industry. This also provides a more personalized feel to the potential customers and gives the feeling that they’re in for a niche category of service. The point here is to expand the business in an already existing customer base,

 

 

Influencer Marketing:

Deals in business are often concluded under the influence or guidance of a certain third entity and this aspect of marketing which focuses on customer psyche during the decision-making process is termed as Influencer Marketing. Though, it’s not really a novel way of marketing, it has come under the lenses lately in a much more professional way where the companies can use a certain respectable third party member to ‘spread the word’ or propagate particular features of a company’s product or services via personal one-to-one meetings or via certain social platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook. In the distant future, we might see the rise professional ‘micro-influencers’ which will be much more dedicated to a single domain or industry.

 

 

Content Marketing:

It’s perfectly said that ‘Content is the king’. The audience of today despite all the modernization still prefers to read a blog, video, podcasts or is influenced by a certain write-up regarding the product/service they’re looking to avail and therefore, creating shareable content be it in the form of an article, video, high-quality images or an infographic is still impactful when it comes to B2B marketing. This is an indirect method of marketing where the marketer does not directly endorse the product but creates an in-bound link for the potential customer towards the actual product/service.

 

 

 

Native Marketing:

Native Marketing is a kind of content based advertising in which the company utilizes sponsored content to be put in a certain magazine or website, but is passed off as an integral write-up by that particular magazine or website. It can be observed highly on Facebook friendly sites like Buzzfeed or ScoopWhoop for B2C products. Also using softwares like Taboola, Boomtrain or Outbrain, the marketers can make newspaper sites like ET or Times of India recommend their sponsored content alongside relevant articles. They can be found various websites under the moniker ’From The Web or ‘Recommended For You’.

 

 

Mobile Marketing:

Mobile Marketing is the need of the hour since the world is obsessed with various applications on their cell-phones be it banking, news, sports or payments. This creates such a big platform for propagating certain relevant products or services. Random pop-ups, small ads occupying the bottom of your screen or certain in-app ads create huge amount of impressions and clicks from the potential customers as it is easily accessible and fast due to the ever-increasing data speed rates. Also, notifications from the applications are infused with paid advertisements which generates decent level of curiosity amongst the users. The target customer is readily available in this kind of marketing and therefore, it’s a much safer bet when it comes to B2B Marketing.

 

This list is certainly non-exhaustive since there are many unexplored ways in which a product or a service can be sold and these techniques will surely make their foray once the competition intensifies further to gain customer attention and the eager budding marketers should keep their eyes wide open to ensure they do not miss out on anything interesting.

 

 

-Omkar Lad (Marketing & Finance – 2016-18)

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2 comments

  1. Avatar
    Senthil Kumar

    Sales & Marketing work on Push-Pull model. Marketing pulls demand, Sales pushes demand. There are grey areas in both but they are distinct.

    • Avatar

      My thought process is that both Sales and Marketing are distinct entities on their own but they intersect heavily and the line blurs at times. Social Selling can be at times work as a Pull Method and hence i have tried to steer clear of such tight spots.

      Thanks for your suggestions Senthil. Means a lot when it comes from an active alumni who’s working in B2B sales and marketing.

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