1. Change Management
This could be the only most crucial element in marketing success, and also one of the most under-appreciated, least understood, and most uninvested in the present.
As organizations in marketing embrace the responsibility for revenue, work in more coordinated ways across the company, and are more integrated, we require more than new rules and definitions. We must assist essential groups within the organization take on the new paradigm and navigating it efficiently.
There are a variety of components to take into consideration:
i) Changes within your marketing department
Moving away from a volume-based strategy to a pipeline-based approach will change the way people do their tasks. For example, most leads with the lowest price aren’t an issue anymore. So how can you help these team members with a wealth of talent move to a different set of measures, a new area of focus, and remain at ease with their abilities (let’s not forget the security of their jobs) throughout the process?
As marketing strategies become more complicated, it’s more crucial to develop seamless cross-channel marketing campaigns that break down the siloed groups. No longer is it acceptable for the email team, social team members, team for events, etc., to run their plans.
Making sure that the teams can collaborate more tightly (especially in the current time when they may spend less time together physically) is the top priority for 2022.
ii) Changes across teams that deal with customers
The way that sales, marketing, and account management teams collaborate is also crucial to the success of your business. If you adopt an account-based method to your GTM actions, Customers expect a similar experience and message across all teams. What is your strategy for investing in playbooks and team-building between groups to facilitate daily collaboration needed in this situation?
iii) Leadership and board levels
If your scorecards for marketing display “up in the correct direction” measurement metrics that are not vanity, or if your board believes that your job as a marketing professional is to generate MQLs, you’ve got more of a mountain to climb to effect change.
How do your board members comprehend the impact and importance modern marketing has on the company? In defining the addressable market or adopting a revenue-responsible strategy for budgeting, marketing, measurements, etc.?
It is essential to establish an action plan to manage all three interconnected levels of Management throughout the following year.
2. Retention based on Accounts
As a function or a focus sector, the account-based market (ABM) is interpreted — and misinterpreted in many different ways.
CEOs advise their marketing managers to “do ABM” to an account or rep. I’ve seen businesses create direct mail campaigns and state the claim that “their ABM campaign is completed.” I’ve observed marketing teams develop multi-channel accounts that are coordinated and focused on the account but fail to include sales representatives even once.
They don’t meet the standard of a genuinely integrated go-to-market account. In its simplest definition, an account-based motion is:
- A focus on key/qualified accounts
- A coordinated and tightly-coordinated approach to many members of the prospective buyer’s “buying committee.”
- A similarly coordinated approach for the buyer’s go-to-market teams
In most instances that this definition is applied with success, it remains solely focused on net-new business.
But, the best chance to utilize “ABM” to maximize profit for your business may be through extending customer relationships — which includes expansions, renewals, and more.
What happens after the deal is concluded? You rejoice, call the bell, and the person who closed the agreement receives a commission check, and the prospect gets given to the customer success team. How do you handle your accounts-based action now? Why shouldn’t it be allowed to continue?
Retention based on account (please don’t abbreviate this one, either) could include anything that ranges from “land as well as expands” to facilitating formal renewals and ensuring that your customers remain with your company.
Specific considerations to keep in mind in transitioning to a retention motion based on account:
Do The Buying Committee Change?
There could be different individuals who are involved in the execution and use as well as the purchase. Who are directly and indirectly benefiting from your item or service – both internally and externally?
What are you doing to define how you measure and communicate how these people can benefit individually and collectively? The consensus doesn’t stop after purchase (first) buy.
Who else needs to see the confirmation of delivered value?
As you outline the buying experience that anticipates the critical steps of decision-making and confidence-building throughout the purchase process, you should also create an explicit path for adoption based on account, usage, and confirmation.
Where (and from who) could the ROI of your product be analyzed or challenged in the future? Do not wait for the active “renewal” duration at your risk.
Do key members of the Buying/Renewal committee Change?
Throughout your relationship with the bank account, you can be sure that some of the key members from both sides will be able to move on.
Don’t forget that a crucial element of success with accounts is building rapport and building relationships. When new players are brought in to fill the responsibilities of a critical role, what is your strategy for engaging them to ensure that they continue to gain growth and value?
3. Sustainable Marketing
I anticipate that more businesses will take the environmental implications of their marketing and investments to a better well-known, understood, and quantified importance.
Do we require more Tchotchkes? If they’re a prize at a trade show but thrown away inside the hotel or later discarded at home, do we only increase the waste problem?
How can we take a bold approach to reduce external and internal travel while still accomplishing work? (This includes commutes to work and WFH virtual collaboration, including travel and travel options, among others).
Do we prioritize collaborations based on mutual agreements to limit the negative environmental impacts of marketing programs? Tech companies and agencies, and media platforms are among the many.
What can we do to reduce the environmental footprints of the upcoming events? Fewer printed materials, fewer people on the premises, More investment in hybrid and virtual alternatives, carbon offset investment, etc.
As marketers, we can be role models and inspire others – both inwardly and outwardly by making environmental awareness an ongoing, active initiative.
4. Target Account Specific
Who are you selling to? Who are you selling to? Which specific match-ups will result in the most extended life-long value, satisfaction, and advocacy?
There’s often a massive distinction between your addressable and intended markets.
It isn’t possible to sell to all health care providers. So what are the businesses in the health care sector which might be facing the same problem that you can solve, or that are suitable candidates for your solution to resolve the size and scope of the issue in their business?
A perfect customer profile (ICP) must be more than just the demographics. The most reliable indicators are those that relate to psychography. For example, what are the company’s values? What are their views on risk, growth, and competition.? These more detailed filters could be applied to the overall account and the key members of the purchasing committee.
Target account precision refers to using these and other psychographic filters, for example, neuron signals that suggest intention and readiness. Specific indicators are not dynamic, and some are dynamic. That’s why you shouldn’t create a list and let it run. Leading companies are constantly reassessing ICP requirements and the level of capabilities in their markets of choice.
Many of these advanced filters aren’t readily available using the standard list of companies. However, it doesn’t mean that there are no other process-driven reproducible and scalable methods to extract that data and then use it to filter out targets and other moving actions.
5. The return of brand equity and community investment
Even if you’re an early-stage business investing in your brand’s image will yield long-term and short-term benefits. First, it will give you an early selection of deals. It helps communicate a unifying message, mission, and positioning to the market. Finally, it will provide your brand with an opinion and maybe even a personality.
Particularly for those with a lengthy sales cycle, branding investments are an absolute requirement. For example, if you’re facing a high 2022 pipeline target, demand campaigns will likely need to be used to help fill the pipeline. In addition, brand investments that are in place are likely to increase the channel’s impact conversion, efficiency, and efficiency through the second half of the year and 2023.
Also, the investment you make in the brand today is an investment in pipelines later. So over time, that brand investment will help offset the price premium and cost you’d otherwise pay for short-term demand campaigns.
A crucial component of the brand working for numerous firms is in the form of the community. Content marketing remains vital to many B2B brands. An improvement of the function is to consider the community as content. When done well, you’re not just an author of the content, but you are now a moderator of content and facilitator. Amazing things can occur when you get your clients and customers into peer-to-peer groups.
Branding is more than simply buying (billboards and a flashy presence on the next trade show etc.). Branding offers the chance to develop and be imaginative to increase the perception of your brand, increase preference, and gain a substantial competitive advantage.
6. Redefining (and re-educating) the concept of marketing “work” and its impact
This is a different type of change management specific to the department’s internal and external brand. How, when, and where marketers can accomplish their tasks and move their teams and organizations is directly impacted by how, when, and where they can achieve their missions.
Are you an art and craft department portrayed as a glorified department? Do your scorecards show a lot of activities that have no relation to the business or revenue impact?
Are you constantly churning through the checklists and performing “helpdesk” to answer every question sale and customer satisfaction is throwing at you, trying to achieve more quantity than quality?
B2B marketers face perception problems, which we often cause.
We create our acronyms and hope for everyone else in the business to join in instead of using terms and metrics that the CEO, CFO, and board members already use and appreciate.
We focus on the “marketing that will bring greater” (more leads or clicks, and more vital impressions!) that is an ever-changing race.
If we concentrate on the impact, the quantity of leads becomes less critical. Instead of endless leads to be generated, focus on the conversion rate and the speed of the sales pipeline. Choose programs to prioritize and use words that show a thorough grasp of your company and the market that you can target.
Escape from the spin cycle of spinning.
When you do that, and you do that, your “always-on” marketing expectation of your customers begins to diminish. How fast you respond to emails isn’t as crucial in the same way as your short series of revenue-focused projects the team and you are obsessing with for the entire year or the quarter.
The focus on outcomes vs. work helps you concentrate on the things that matter at work and (perhaps more important) your priorities and requirements beyond work.
I am convinced that redefining the definition of B2B marketing “work,” as well as changing the perception of what marketers are and the work they perform, can profoundly impact their careers and lives.
There’s plenty of work accomplished. However, the process and results are thrilling.
7. Data Intelligence
There’s a significant distinction between observations and insights.
Historically, we required analysts to analyze the data to find patterns. Today, we have computers taking care of that task quicker, less expensive, and continuously.
Machine learning and AI have dramatically altered the speed and quality of the intelligence we get from our data.
In reality, we have tons of information. It’s all scattered across various platforms and systems. Still, no one is even looking at it and comparing or combining it with building a more comprehensive picture of the customer’s behavior, insight, intent, etc.
The issue isn’t about increasing the amount of data. It’s always been about faster data and better data. Shortly, the difference will be in identifying the hidden signals based on insights, observations, and actions to take in response to this data.
In the coming three years, data intelligence may surpass the amount that B2B marketing is spending on media.
You know who to be targeting and don’t need to allocate a limited budget for getting them to sign up time and time again. If you know when/how and what to do on a personal or a more significant overall scale?
Data intelligence can help let you unlock this.
8. User-Led Growth (a variation of growth-driven by-products or PLG)
The primary instruction has been to sell to VITO (the Organization’s Most Important Top Official) in the recorded sales history. “Get to the person,” Old school salespeople claim,” and “you’ll be able to close the deal.” Modern sales say otherwise. There’s now a buying committee in place and “VITO” acting in the role as executive sponsor and check writer after the buying committee has reached an agreement on:
- Solving a problem and the next step
- Selecting the right vendor to aid in solving it
The modern (account-based account-based) selling strategy recognizes different roles within the buying and its journey hierarchy, including subgroups of the buying committee at different crucial stages and decision points.
Growth-driven by-product (PLG) is on track to alter the model once more, but this time opposite what the old guard offered to VITO.
With PLG, the end-user is your primary target. This can be achieved in various ways, like providing a no-cost or less-expensive product version for no cost to your customers.
When it is done correctly, if done right, the customer is the primary catalyst, an internal teacher, and the consensus-building driver and is the primary influencer for the other internal purchasing committee members.
The end-user could have the purchasing authority to initiate the relationship, particularly in a land-and-expand go-to-market scenario.
If this is the case in your ongoing or near-future reality, it will have enormous implications for planning and managing the demand, content, and awareness channels.
As the user is your primary goal, this is the list of sales and marketing strategies you’d prefer to use:
The most valuable aspect of your end-user PLG strategy will also serve as its foundational element — a specific user persona that details the motivations for buying early in the journey goals, emotions, and goals and objectives.
Convert those insights from personas into attention to SEO and content strategies, improving your users’ speed and frequent value-added discoveries. This can include video content, peer group involvement, co-marketing with partners, etc.
Within the PLG world, create a simulation interactive, interactive experience that does not engage your customers in the actual product; this is a tested method to allow prospects to understand the product’s real-time understanding. This medium can significantly influence trials or even entry-level conversion rates.
If it is on your website directly or via third-party reviews or community websites, comparative peer reviews can help reduce risks and improve confidence.
9. Lead-based and Account-based Funnel Management
It’s an equilibrium, not a change. You can remove the lead object from the CRM at any time. So I’m 100% for an account-based approach for most B2B businesses.
But they don’t write checks. As a result, logos will not be able to respond to your questions via email. In the meantime, until robots make sales to robotics, people remain in the middle of our marketing and sales initiatives (on each side).
The buying committees are essential. They are a necessity for buying journeys that use matrixed purchasing. The participation of a group of this overall committee to agree is necessary. It’s the accounting that counts in the final.
The people, however, will interact in a way with sales representatives. Participate in your occasions. View your videos. Inform your friends to take a look.
The term Contacts or Leads isn’t the point. As long as the individual individuals represent the core of the purchasing committee and account and account, we must be sure to balance account-based strategies with leads-based interaction and input.
10. Personalization at Scale
Various maturity levels can enhance the effectiveness, impact, and efficacy of personalization at scale.
The first is the capability to instantly “correct” personally identifiable data to make it appear more natural; this involves systematically normalizing things such as “matt” to “Matt” in real-time using technology before it’s transmitted.
The second is the capability to personalize the content on one channel based on a contact’s past and current interests. For example, what are the people they have interacted with previously, within and outside of your company, and how can you use that data to personalize what they will see or experience in the future?
You should tailor the capability of your “when” in advertising and content delivery to 3. Relevance is a result of curiosity and the length of time.
The fourth is the capability to customize across different marketing channels (email, social, DM, Web site, etc.).
Five is the capability to be customized across all go-to-market channels (marketing sales, sales, customer satisfaction, etc.).
The majority of them are complex, and the technology is still developing.
The more detailed you are on the list (and the list keeps going), the more effective and efficient your marketing will become.
11. Hybrid Event Campaigns
Each of those words is essential. It is a fact that the events we will have will be hybrids well into 2022.
The most successful businesses will handle both in-person and online experiences proactively, closely coordinated, and focus on each method’s distinctive advantages, characteristics, and advantages. A feed on Zoom of your event in person won’t be enough. We’re expecting more from now on.
Events aren’t going to go out of fashion anytime; we are drawn to human interaction. Moreover, many of the most effective online event platforms have established that we can deliver substantial value to producers and attendees without getting on planes (sponsor value is a different challenge not yet addressed on a scale).
In-person events are different; however, they have been with success since the end of the fall. Omicron means a time and not a time when these events will continue.
In the end, the event isn’t a campaign. It’s just an event that happens. The preceding and following the context in which it is set is what makes it either successful or not.
Imagine the event you organize as a strategy in the enormous scope of work. Ensure cross-department involvement throughout the event; use your information and insights to tailor experiences, follow-ups, etc.
12. Establishing, and managing your team’s culture
It’s now a common occurrence to claim that a lot has changed over two years. This change was and will be an ongoing process.
In the same way, your company defines its core values and mission, So should the marketing department.
How do you develop guidelines, communicate them, and ensure that you protect certain principles of engagement? Respect? Professionalism?
What kinds of accommodations will you not just accept but actively advocate and celebrate, enabling your team to achieve maximum productivity and achieve success both during and outside of working time?
We’ve spent too much time being reactive in the last two years, but now is the right time to be proactive. Create a marketing team that is open to the evolution of times, appreciates diversity in all its forms, and aims to redefine the meaning of work in the eyes of B2B marketers.
Qualitative over Quantity. The impact of activities. Prioritization and concentrating on the most critical work instead of long hours or a long to-do list.
We have the unique chance to not just change the meaning of work in marketing but to do so in a method that positively affects the lives and careers of people who are around us.