If you're a B2B marketer, you know the list of challenges can be endless. This year, we saw an increased focus on addressing pain points throughout the entire customer journey, taking customer emotions into account to create better interactions between the individual and the brand. Personalization was key to these efforts, as B2B brands strove to provide experiences unique to individual customer needs. Looking back at 2015, five trends emerged in B2B marketing that helped achieve these goals.
1. Embracing Predictive Intelligence
Predictive intelligence captures data points about the customer, such as clicks, purchases, abandoned carts, and email opens. It lets marketers track customer behavior and continually refine the profile of that customer, allowing the brand to deliver personalized content in real-time. Eighty-six percent of individuals say personalization plays a role in their purchasing decisions, which explains why B2B marketers have turned to predictive intelligence to create these highly customized experiences for the decision makers at companies that are potential clients.
2. Mastering Mobile Marketing
Reaching today's decision makers means designing campaigns and high-impact content that renders seamlessly on mobile devices. In fact, roughly 50 percent of B2B customers are searching for and reviewing products on their mobile devices. This year, B2B marketers focused on creating mobile-responsive websites. In addition, a recent Regalix study revealed that 65 percent of B2B brands also developed a mobile app this year.
3. Post-Click Marketing
B2B marketers know that 98 percent of website visitors don't convert on the first visit, and to cut down on that high bounce rate, have begun implementing post-click strategies. These strategies include exit intent modals that appear as an individual leaves the page, interactive content to engage and qualify leads, audience profiling quizzes to simultaneously entertain and learn about them, and more. This year, many B2B companies implemented at least one of these tactics.
4. Enhancing Personalization Via Micro-Moments
Micro-moments and personalization improve customer experience by creating timely and relevant one-to-one interactions any time a decision maker uses his or her device to look up information. Micro-moments entail immediate action; therefore B2B brands focused this year on providing immediate value to their potential customers by complementing micro-moments with the most relevant content.
5. Account-Based Marketing
B2B brands are increasingly focusing their marketing efforts on specific target accounts, particularly for goals like new user acquisition, lead nurturing and event follow-up. This year, many B2B brands increased their market research efforts, used new products to identify top prospects, created custom demos and use cases for customers, and delved into industry-specific content. B2B marketers focused on how their brand could help solve the pain points of specific prospects rather than traditional 'spray and pray' demand generation tactics.
We saw a lot of innovation in digital marketing this year - expect even more next year. Looking ahead into 2016, we'll likely see micro-moments take off, an even bigger push into mobile, and increased use of new Facebook and Instagram ad types.