Think big data. Technology and marketing trends. Changing consumer behaviour. Personalised user experiences. Omnichannel marketing. Marketing automation. These are the paradigms of a constantly evolving marketing landscape that present businesses with unique challenges and steep learning curves as they look to develop marketing fluency.
Let’s face it – there's always room to improve on your strategy and optimise your marketing efforts. It’s those marketers who are willing to buckle down and deal with whatever changes the industry brings, who overcome the top challenges faced today. They ensure their success by building new strategies, shrinking the talent gap and selecting the right technologies to deliver on strategies that drive great success and business growth.
Let’s delve deeper into three common obstacles, and the tactics you can use to overcome them.
Top B2B Inbound Marketing Challenges that all marketers face and how to tackle them
A major challenge facing B2B marketing is that customers today have more control over the buying process than marketers do. Thanks to the age of information and the proliferation of mobile devices and channels, the path to purchase is a winding road, a complex web of touch points.
According to one of Direct Marketing Partners thought leadership online marketing guides, it takes a multitude of touches (7 – 13+ to be exact) before a customer commits to buying any products and services.
And as the number of channels and devices continues to rise, so does the need to embrace an integrated marketing strategy. One based on customer experience and their buying journey.
But how do you implement such a strategy in a B2B company? Well it always starts with your buyer personas. By gaining the right customer insights and acting upon them, you can offer the right information and the right experience at the right time.
This crucial shift from company-centric to customer-centric marketing simplifies the creation and execution of cross-channel campaigns. It does so by enabling marketers to create a single campaign that can be viewed, replicated and measured across various channels.
2. Marketing Technology
Marketing technology or MarTech as it’s now referred to, is not just about making those customer-centric processes more efficient. It’s the platform marketers use to embrace and touch the digital world. Your choice of marketing software and how you use it will shape the experiences you deliver to your target personas.
At Struto, we base our strategic implementation on the following technologies:
- A business-ready website that is user-friendly, responsive on multiple devices and built around user-focused journeys that encourage conversion by offering prospects relevant content that caters for each stage of the buying cycle.
- A customer relationship system (CRM) to capture leads and allow business to bridge the gap between sales and marketing efforts.
- Marketing and sales software, such as HubSpot, integrates the various elements of your marketing campaigns to create a powerful platform for marketing, which automates and streamlines your team’s marketing efforts.
The key aspect of choosing a technology stack is to ensure that all components are integrated and connected. This allows for a holistic view into customer behaviours, marketing activities and sales results, and how that impacts the bottom-line of the business.
3. Measurability of marketing efforts
Growing your ROI will depend on your knowledge of how to measure and analyse it during its peaks and its troughs.
Your marketing manager can present you with a most brilliant marketing strategy, but if that strategy is not measurable, it would end up being much ado about nothing. Tools like HubSpot allow you to generate measurable data against any marketing effort encompassed within digital marketing, such as creating content for email, blog or social media marketing, as well as lead generation.
In our opinion, the easiest and quickest way to make your B2B inbound marketing more measurable is to switch to inbound marketing. According to HubSpot's State of Inbound report, using quality content and marketing strategies to attract, convert, close and delight customers is more effective than any other strategy.
Other areas seeing a drastic improvement with the application of inbound methodology are the cost and quality of leads, as well as the ROI. Ultimately, even though inbound doesn't completely substitute the need to perform unmeasurable activities, moving towards inbound places measurability at the centre of your marketing effort, which will minimise the unknown factor within your marketing actions.
So take a step back, and do a thorough analysis of your marketing strategy, talent and technology stack and its current performance to help determine where your biggest challenges lie. Now focus on improving the areas that need the most attention, so you can deliver the results you want!
*This blog has been repurposed from a previous blog dealing with challenges for B2B companies.