Table of contents
Increased Emphasis on Customer Experience
Alignment of Marketing and Sales Teams
Omnichannel marketing is attracting new customers through different channels. A company’s customers lie on different channels, so brands need to be present on each channel to convert them. When brands approach customers on their preferred channels, they will acquire more customers. Even if customers see the brand message on multiple channels, they won’t be frustrated and grow cold towards the company. Instead, they will see that the brand message is consistent and their trust in the brand increases.
Studies show that companies using omnichannel marketing earn 18.96% more engagement rates than single-channel companies. Using omnichannel marketing gives a 287% high purchase rate and increases revenue. Also, it boosts customer loyalty and ensures that customers stay with the brand.
Customers today expect companies to serve them personalized content on ten or more channels. 72% of B2B companies selling products on more than seven channels see more profit.
The ten most effective channels include:
- In-person visits
- Phone calls
- Procurement Department
- Mobile apps
- E-procurement portal
- Video conference
- Google search
- Trade shows
Increased Emphasis on Customer Experience
Companies always know the value of customer experience. Happy customers would bring more revenue to the company. So, companies focusing on customer experience is a common sight. But with the pandemic, the emphasis on online customer experience is more prominent than ever. Customers want services that are fast and highly accessible. 86% of customers are willing to pay a large amount for a top-notch customer experience. So, companies should analyze their campaigns and fix issues for heightened customer experiences.
In the past, marketers tried to attract a large population. But now customers expect highly personalized experiences that meet their needs and suit their lifestyle. So, focusing on customer success is indispensable for any organization that aims to increase its revenue.
Chatbots help improve customer experience and boost sales conversions. They can help customers solve their queries, even in the absence of sales representatives. They can reduce response times and increase customer satisfaction. As customers get the information they need quickly, they will make quick purchases.
Companies should also focus on improving site speed. A slow site speed would drive customers away and is the critical factor stopping the company from expanding further. Improving site navigation is also necessary. Customers should find all the elements of the site neatly organized. All the elements of the site should compel them to make purchases.
Account-based marketing is another trend employed by companies trying to boost their revenue. It is quite different from traditional B2B sales which were about capturing as many leads as possible. The traditional approach could get marketers more leads, but very few will convert in the end.
Account-based marketing starts with identifying accounts that could give the company more revenue. Then marketers target those accounts with highly customized ads and content. The goal of account-based marketing is to convince the decision-makers of those accounts, rather than target anyone in the company.
Most B2B buyer communities have around 20 individuals. They have the final say on whether to make a purchase. Using Account-based marketing companies can place their offers right in front of the decision-makers. It increases the likelihood of the sales happening.
The account-based approach to marketing also provides many upselling opportunities. Marketers can recommend better versions of products and bring more revenue. Since this approach targets only the decision-makers, marketing expenses come down. The sales cycle shortens because only a few players are involved. There is also no need for cold-calling as the leaders are already familiar with the product.
Account-based marketing is also helpful in coordination between the marketing and sales team. Marketers can provide key inputs to the sales leaders. The latter can use the information to nurture and convert the customer effectively.
The plain truth is that no one likes hard selling. B2B customers are well-educated, and they are less likely to be persuaded through cold selling. They need more logical arguments and see how their choice will affect the society to make a purchase. So, they prefer to do their research and gather the information they need. They don’t need a sales representative to guide them, as they want more freedom in their decision-making. So, brands should reduce their reliance on cold selling and cold mailing.
Companies can win B2B buyers by creating the necessary infrastructure that facilitates independent decision-making. By creating a platform that allows leads to interact with the brand at all times, companies can generate more revenue. Giving more freedom to make decisions, increases the trust B2B buyers have for companies. If there is more trust, there will be more sales and growth in revenue.
Hybrid Sales Teams
The pandemic pushed people toward digital sales. Sales leaders had to adapt to the new situation to attract more customers. Sales teams operating online can reduce expenses and leverage the power of the internet to generate revenue. Customers can make instant purchases and get the products they want without much delay. But not all customers want exclusive online experiences. Some of them prefer in-person interactions more than video calls. Some prefer a mix of online and in-person interactions.
75% of buyers prefer to talk to a salesperson before making a purchase. At the same time, only 15% of repurchasers want to talk to sales representatives. The data shows that one-on-one interactions are essential in acquiring new customers. Customers buying the same product do not need support from the sales team. So, companies should define the sales process to train the social selling to their team to adapt to different types of interactions with customers. Salespeople should be well-trained in phone calls, video conferences, and physical visits. When they are flexible, they can attract customers in the way they like. So, companies should create hybrid sales teams to maximize their revenue.
Top b2b sales trends 2022 are:
- Brand Strategy
- Revenue Optimization
- Social Commerce
- AI-driven Personalization
- Self-service Buying Portals
Companies spend a lot of money on acquiring new customers. But retaining new customers is not only easy but is also cost-effective. New customers can cost five times as much as retaining existing customers. Retaining customers also boosts the profitability of the company by 25% up to a maximum of 95%. If they focus on retaining customers, companies can cut marketing costs. Retention campaigns will give them more repeat purchases. Above all, happy customers will spread the word to more people. They will recommend the company to more people, and it will bring more customers and revenue to the company.
Brands can retain more customers by sending them personalized offers and giving them loyalty points. They can use email campaigns and send newsletters to keep customers attached to them. Excellent customer service also helps in retaining customers. Another tactic a company can use is to reward customers for every referral they provide.
Studies conducted among loyal customers show the value of retention campaigns. The top 10% of loyal customers spend 3 times more per order than the rest. The top 1% of the loyal customers spend 5 times more and bring more profit to the company. So, companies should focus on retaining customers to boost their profitability.
Customers can approach retention marketing in two ways:
This approach involves keeping manual records about repeat purchases and loyal customers. It works well when the brand is a small one, and when the relationship between the company and the customer is more personal. However, when the brand gets more than a hundred customers, it is hard to remember every one of them. Customers who make small purchases get forgotten or ignored. The company would lose a sizable amount of revenue if more of which customers leave.
The benefit of online retention campaigns is that they are easy to set up and cost only a little. Marketers can keep track of customers and study customer behavior. It is easy for them to identify customers that need more attention. Companies can offer special deals and promotional emails to persuade customers to stay with the brand. Online retention campaigns allow companies to harvest fresh data and use them to make real-time decisions that improve their profits.
Strategic Digital Marketing
Most companies today have a website and they run digital marketing campaigns to attract new customers. However, having a strategy is necessary to get results. If the digital strategy is on the sidelines, companies would be wasting their time and effort building their online presence. All their marketing efforts would be scattered and there would be multiple campaigns competing against each other. One example is when different pages with the same keywords compete against each other on the search rankings. That would prevent the website from appearing on top of Google Search Results.
Companies can appoint a chief digital officer who oversees building necessary tools to help the digital transformation, all digital marketing campaigns: SEO, PPC, social media marketing, email marketing, and content marketing. He/she will ensure that all campaigns communicate the brand message and are consistent. It is also his/her responsibility to ensure that campaigns provide the expected ROI. In this way, brands can be more strategic with digital marketing and increase their revenue.
The top 6 b2b marketing predictions for 2022 - by Gartner
In 2022, marketing leaders are shifting their digital focus from enhancing customer relationships to building new connections across the full spectrum of stakeholders.
"By 2023, the opt-out rate for mobile app tracking will decline from 85% to 60% as consumers learn that untargeted ads increase their exposure to low-quality content."
"By 2023, the volume of ad impressions that TV and streaming media channels deliver during traditional 9-to-5 working hours will grow by 60%."
"By 2023, 90% of B2B social media marketing strategies will incorporate scaled employee advocacy programs."
"By 2025, one in five B2B companies will leverage AI/Machine learning (ML) to connect buyers with sales reps at key moments during digital commerce interactions."
"By 2026, CMOs will dedicate 30% of their influencer and celebrity budgets to virtual influencers."
"By 2026, 60% of millennial and Gen Z consumers will prefer making purchases on social platforms over traditional digital commerce platforms."
Alignment of Marketing and Sales Teams
Marketing and sales teams have different approaches, but they work for the same goal: more sales conversions. So, brand leaders need to ensure that they don’t work in silos and against each other. Marketing teams can provide valuable information about customers that allows sales teams to convince them more easily. Likewise, sales teams can share information about the quality of leads they receive with the marketing team. Aligning both teams results in a 32% higher revenue and helps in retaining 36% more customers. The unification of both teams attracts only high-quality leads which boost the revenue for the company.
Using Big Data and Analytics
Companies relied on local field knowledge to improve their campaigns in the past. But such an approach is too expensive and labor-intensive today. So, they can use advanced analytics and machine learning to optimize their campaigns. Artificial Intelligence and machine learning help them automate their efforts and save money, time, and effort.
Big data allows companies to build and update customer profiles. Brands can use software to get customer inputs from social platforms and other channels to increase their revenue. Big data removes the need to go by gut instincts. Sales teams can use big data to make data-based decisions that would bring them impressive results.
Big data and analytics also help companies identify the right salespeople that will bring them more sales. Not every sales representative is a good fit for a particular task. By using big data, brands can identify the strengths and weaknesses of their sales representatives. Then they can deploy the right people to target valuable accounts.
Big data also helps in forecasting and making realistic predictions. Without accurate data, companies risk making wrong decisions that could bring financial loss. But they can leverage big data to avoid human errors and automate routine tasks. They can track customer journeys and monitor every stage right up to conversion.
ECommerce Platform is an all-in-one solution
An eCommerce platform satisfies most of the criteria that help businesses increase their profits. Businesses can save a lot of money by investing in an eCommerce platform. They don’t need to hire web designers to make custom websites. All they need is to pay a small subscription fee and get their online stores ready in no time. ECommerce platforms improve customer experience, as B2B buyers can order their products in one place without having to switch between different channels. Likewise, it improves site speed, and navigation, and enhances the overall customer experience.
Customers can order products in bulk quantities and can avail a lot of discounts. So, eCommerce platforms get companies more repeat buyers. The platform is also easy to manage and fixing issues is relatively simple. Marketers can gain valuable customer insights when they invest in an eCommerce platform.