The 21st century B2B sales landscape is becoming more and more complex and challenging. Multiple buyers and buying influences have a growing role in any purchasing decision and -on top of that- digital technology and the web are now strong sales and marketing factors, even in B2B.
A 2015 Forrester research proves that B2B buyers increasingly research information online before they engage with a vendor and are expecting personalisation and exceptional service across their buying journey, while LinkedIn studies report that B2B buyers are increasingly expecting thought-leadership and a clearly articulated vision from the brands they connect with.
The power of Artificial Intelligence.
Digital marketers have used Content Marketing and SEO for B2B thought-leadership for years, but recent developments have opened many new possibilities turning Digital Marketing into an omnichannel strategy which can facilitate customer journey and provide very specific intelligence around prospect behaviour, just when sales teams need it.
The most stunning progresses have been made by applying the power of AI to analytics. Now analytics tools can be successfully used to map B2B prospect interactions with a precision and prediction until now only known in B2C situations. The right analytics tools applied to a social media report can tell you who is interacting with your material by company, job seniority, role, location and time and -crucially- allow you to measure how hot your prospects really are and to conduct a needs analysis like never before.
Facilitating buying journeys.
It is easy to see how all this intelligence can help you build and manage a solid pipeline, but analysing and reporting is only a small part of how Digital Marketing can support lead generation; marketing automation has reached incredible levels of efficiency in segmentation.
For many years digital marketers pushed out material, more or less hoping that some of it would stick. Then our tools got better and we began to see patterns in the way our prospects interacted with our website or social media contents; however, building a model around customer journeys was still a big headache (last click? linear attribution? time-decay?). Nowadays AI has brought us powerful tools which integrate website visits and marketing automation so we can track customer journey with such fine targeting that we are able implement ABM strategies around key accounts and build attribution models that actually work.
The wealth of targeted business intelligence this gives sales teams is priceless. In a situation where digital marketing and sales functions align with common goals and a common definition of what a good lead is, Digital Marketing can empower B2B sales like never before.
Using Digital Marketing for Lead Generation is now the reality of 21st century sales and it is not going to change anytime soon. If anything, the need to integrate Digital Marketing and B2B sales will become stronger.
Broadley Speaking have more than 2o years’ experience creating perfectly qualified business opportunities for their partners, through their TPM (Total Prospect Management) approach which perfectly aligns B2B Sales and Digital marketing. If you would like to talk about applying TPM to your company strategy, you can send us an e-mail or call +44 (0)1822 618537