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How to Overcome B2B Marketing Challenges
With a shift in technology and media platforms, marketers face several B2B marketing challenges. Some of the biggest hurdles include how to align sales and marketing efforts, create personalized experiences, and measure marketing ROI. Before marketers make any sale, they must generate leads and find qualified prospects that can stay with them long term. The constant challenges of making b2b transactions force marketers to use the software and technologies to help them learn and grow. According to a report by McKinsey, B2B leaders who employ the right tools and technologies can drive five times more revenue than their peers. These days, being an early adopter of customized technology or software can help marketers remain highly competitive in their respective markets.
Top Benefits of using B2B Marketing Software
To make b2b marketing more result-oriented, the focus should shift towards modernizing marketing capabilities. By leveraging b2b software like Salesforce, Marketo, Eloqua, etc., marketing professionals can better control their campaigns, leads, and the ROI they drive. On top of that, technology allows teams to become agile and data-driven to use this data to create personalized customer experiences.
Given below are some crucial benefits that marketers expect to gain from b2b marketing software.
Better Decision Making
Through analytics software, marketers can drive valuable insights into their customers' behaviors and what drives them to make purchasing decisions. This way, b2b players will make better business decisions with real-time data and spend more time building relationships with their customers.
Saves Time and Money
Smart business investments made in technology or software will give immense profit. Moreover, using methods like A/B Testing, b2b marketers can figure out what marketing approach works best for them, and which does not. This way, they can prevent themselves from failing strategy and save time, energy, and money.
Better Tracking and Analytics Measuring
A B2B marketing software allows you to track and measure all real-time analytics. Through software, B2B marketers can easily scrutinize data, impressions, and metrics from multiple devices and channels, such as websites, social media pages, marketing campaigns, banners, and advertisements. Later, B2B marketers can leverage this data to extract meaningful insights and evaluate their marketing strategies and efforts. Hence, marketing software allows better analytics tracking to make efficient and effective data-driven decisions.
Crucial Marketing Challenges in the B2B World
Marketing is the first and foremost technique for hunting clients in any business. But, when it comes to marketing challenges, organizations struggle to overcome them to succeed in implementing successful marketing techniques.
Widespread adoption of digital devices and channels has presented several B2B marketing challenges, like how to accurately target prospects with tailored messages. As prospects have become more intelligent in creating decision shortlists by visiting brand websites and social channels, marketers must be innovative and aligned with sales goals. They must equip themselves with the right tools to have greater visibility into buyers' attributes and behaviors.
Here are the most prominent challenges marketers face when trying to conquer the B2B world, along with some tips on overcoming such issues.
If social media, SEO, Marketing Automation, and other APIs are not well-connected, how can communication be integrated to bring value to the table? These sources pay dividends in capturing the prospect or customer journey – information about their needs, pain points, and interests. Too often, many marketers see the potential and exciting opportunities emerging b2b technologies bring to the marketing world. But they find it challenging to integrate into their business models.
A similar case was experienced by Sabon, a leading nature-infused bath & body product retailer. The brand faced challenges integrating new functionalities into its website, including front-end and back-end. They needed the right tools to smooth the entry of new product SKUs and enable efficient product return processes. Using custom-built integrations in Magento, several custom APIs and modules have been built to automate processes such as product returns and entering new product SKUs.
CRM software, content management system, social media, and analytics platforms should be well connected to capture better customer insights. Multiple tools offer native integration with CRM like Salesforce and CMS like Sitecore. Such platforms allow marketers to push complete customer data into custom Salesforce dashboards and reports.
Managing Brand Website
Managing brand websites is yet another big challenge for b2b marketers. A website is a crucial business asset representing business offerings to attract more visitors, convert them, and help businesses achieve their sales goals. There are multiple challenges with website management, from optimizing website performance to modernizing the website out of the legacy systems as per the target audience's taste.
For example, TOTO, the world's largest luxury bathroom brand, faced a challenge in modernizing its website and traffic without affecting its core values. Using Drupal CMS, the company, TOTO, has evolved into a robust digital entity that offers a seamless customer experience. It showcases the brand's extensive product and product features and allows customers to add specific products to their bucket to compare price, performance, and more.
Marketers can make their website management more accessible with a content management system. Platforms like WordPress, Drupal, and Magento can help marketers to create, manage and distribute online content. Moreover, some platforms, like Sitecore, allow marketers to manage site content. Plus, it enables them to deliver next-level marketing automation through contextual customer experience.
A business audience is a moving target that marketers must keep track of while launching any marketing campaign. Their basic information is constantly changing as they get promoted and change their title. They switched from one organization to another. Such constant changes alter the segments in which the audience is bucketed. And while releasing a campaign, the right message will not go to the right audience. With this incomplete and inaccurate data, marketers face challenges in customer engagement.
If marketers feel that their data is inaccurate, they can utilize the software built specifically for data cleansing.
Marketing and Sales Alignment
As a B2B marketing professional, my main job is to generate qualified leads. Those leads make a good match with the ideal buyer persona. On the other hand, the sales team is overwhelmed with prospecting buyers and closing deals. Differences in the marketing and sales functions make it difficult to get the two teams on the same page. B2B marketers who lack this synergy face challenges in driving qualified leads for the business.
A shared CRM dashboard helps the sales team to see how many leads are qualified. With the same CRM software, marketers can see how many qualified leads get converted. Also, marketers can use the software to create new opportunities whenever a lead is qualified.
In the age of Amazon and Netflix, individuals are getting accustomed to personalized recommendations. More and more B2B buyers expect tailored messages when buying from a B2B company. This often poses a unique set of challenges in front B2B marketers on how to engage with customers and prospects more personally.
For example, Amdocs, a multi-billion dollar software solution provider enterprise, wanted to reimagine its future through digital products. Since they are in the telecom industry, a solid vision was required to guide the business to enable rapid personalization through hypothesizing, implementing, and testing new services and products with the existing customer base in lightning-quick time.
Utilizing personalization tactics, Icreon built an advanced technologies marketplace, one in which Amdocs can provide personalized content that caters to their customers, while leaning on its tremendous in-house staff for heavy lifting of day-to-day responsibilities and maximize Icreon to provide mentorship and guidance on cutting edge technology investments.
Account-based marketing is a growing trend among marketers. This type of marketing is driving a change from bulk lead generation to highly targeted outreach to fewer identified accounts. Essentially, this is a growth strategy wherein marketing and sales come together to create personalized buying experiences for elite prospects. Marketers can consider each account's market and start targeting the b2b buyer by directly speaking to their points and needs.
Marketers should use software that helps collude sales and marketing information to speak to the unique points of selected accounts. HubSpot's ABM Software can perform account-level targeting.
Measuring Marketing ROI
Another biggest b2b marketing challenge is the proof of the Return on Investment (ROI). If marketers cannot align marketing campaigns and other efforts to broader business goals, then it would become challenging to understand which strategy is providing fruitful results i.e., leads. On top of that, marketers would hesitate to request a more budget. This demands accurate organization and planning to measure marketing ROI from the beginning of the marketing and sales efforts.
To measure marketing ROI, marketers should dedicate time and resources to synchronizing their marketing activities and sales results. Marketers can use marketing software and CRM solutions to establish links between marketing and sales efforts. This way, they can see how many leads and customers are generated through marketing activities.
Handling the Dynamic Customer Buying Preferences
As the world is progressing and heading towards advancements, customer needs, demands, and preferences have been evolving since then. There has been a massive shift in how customers engage with content, products, and salespeople. Hence, with that shift, their buying preferences and decisions evolve continuously. This is undoubtedly another big challenge that b2b marketers face.
In such complex and dynamic circumstances, marketers can only grow their business if they take the proper steps and ensure proactive measures. One such bold action is to start leveraging software that helps you simplify the change in customer behavior, so you can promptly act and develop an evolved solution for their needs. However, failure to do so, i.e., not upskilling and advancing with time, will have detrimental effects on business growth.
It's Time to Overcome B2B Marketing Challenges
Challenges for B2B marketers are growing with the evolving needs of tech-savvy customers. A complete analysis of marketing activities and their performance will help marketers discover the most significant opportunities to flourish and grow. This will also enable them to pay attention to the areas that need improvement so that they can make their marketing efforts in a rewarding and yielding direction.
It is also mandatory to stay up to date with the latest trends and leverage software & tools built explicitly for unique marketing needs. This will not only help marketers to stay ahead of the curve but also help them overcome challenges before they affect the business bottom line.
At Icreon, we believe in telling stories and driving values from them. And we do it by creating digital strategy and roadmap and building software to help our clients maximize their marketing returns.
Find out how software can overcome your biggest b2b marketing challenges with us. Explore Icreon's Software Development Services.