In 2018, B2B marketing trends are being pulled in new directions due to a combination of technology advances, organizational cultural shifts and buyer-behavior changes.
Individualization will become the new personalization as machine-learning algorithms become more sophisticated. Individualization makes the consumer believe that the company views them as one of a kind, unique individuals. It creates a deeper connection between the brand and the consumer.
Machine learning is an application of artificial intelligence that provides systems the ability to automatically learn and improve from experience without being explicitly programmed. Machine learning focuses on the development of computer programs that can access data and use it to learn for themselves. This opens new possibilities to gain insights into the target audience’s behavior and the course of action that is most likely to resonate with them.
B2B audiences are increasingly self-educating on the services and products offered by a company before they even talk to a member of the sales team. Because of this, individualization capabilities are becoming an essential part of marketing for any B2B company. Marketing needs to deliver the right content at the right time, which could be at any time.
In 2018, companies will also need to acquire an audience-centric mindset. In a recent study by SiriusDecisions, it was discovered that marketing leaders consistently ranked the need to shift from a product-centric to audience-centric model among their top five priorities.
A keen focus on the customer and the end-to-end experience they have with the brand is critical to a company’s competitiveness. Quality products or services and good prices have always been part of putting a business on a path to success, but nailing the customer relationship is an effective and vital differentiator. Being audience-centric improves the alignment between sales and marketing, increases sales productivity and results in a growth in revenue.
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Source: MarketingProfs & TargetMarketing
Denise Grothouse is the Founder and President of Perfect Six, a Marketing and Brand Management Firm.
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