Month: June 2017
The face of B2B sales and Marketing has changed rapidly over time. Termed as consumerization of B2B, there is a rapid change in the way offerings are purchased and dealt with. How Has Digital Marketing Changed the Way Your B2B Market Functions?
IT products that are flying off the shelf are cloud-based, social media enabled, mobile capable with less involvement of sales. The best examples being the android market or iTune store. These features, with easy self-service options & instant gratification, do not need sales pitch.
Below we cover how digital marketing has changed the way B2B sales & marketing functions in 2013:
- Social selling has gone mainstream: A look at the year 2012 shows that people preferred to make cold calls or send emails to book an appointment. In 2013, sales executives have taken to social media networks to connect with prospective clients. This has helped them add a personal touch, winning a higher response rate from clients and customers. Social media has also helped B2B marketers leverage contacts and networks of customers, colleagues, partners, while keeping an eye on their clients online activities.
- Sales executives have adopted big data: B2B sales leaders have embraced big data. This step has effectively increased their sales. Big data helps to identify and segment customers with highest contribution to the company’s revenues, find leads and study customer usage patterns. By teaming analytics & sales automation, these companies target prospects & customers – offering personalized services based on specific customer behavior.
- Customer engagement makes it to the priority list: Company’s don’t stop at making a sale and moving on to the next deal. With increased subscription based models, unsatisfied customers can unsubscribe from services at any given point. This has aligned organizations to chase and monitor customer behavior, encouraging engagement throughout the life cycle. Some companies have also appointed VP for customer engagement – dedicating them to up-selling and renewals
- The line between sales and marketing is blurred: The process of conducting sales and marketing has evolved. The outbound sale has become inbound sales, mainly due to online conferencing tools. Similarly, the inbound sales in being replaced by self-service and self-help tools and website resources. With this evolution, there is a very thin line separating sales and marketing. This has lead to an increased interaction and collaboration between marketing & sales teams.
- Laptops are replaced by tablets: Being lightweight and easy to use, tablets have become favorites of sales reps on the go. From shipping to product documentations & demonstration, this new gadget helps to do a quick research on prospects before meetings or capture leads at trade shows
- Sales tools have moved to the Cloud: Most companies have adopted cloud-based software for billing & subscription. This has offered increased visibility for customers billing cycle and is helpful in growing and renewing their subscriptions. Cloud-based products are also more stream-lined.
We all talk about social media marketing – be it discussing tweets that are gaining a lot of attention or Facebook pages that have millions of ‘Likes. Most often, we don’t know the purpose behind social media marketing and how it helps businesses increase sales.
The webs is pulsating with white papers, e-books and tell-all articles that are constantly discussing and guiding on how to get the social media marketing ‘right’. So, while you may be doing it right, do you have inkling as to why you are putting in so much effort? Have you ever paused and asked yourself this question?
Marketing is about campaigns – that have a set target or goal that the market is working hard on achieving. Say, you are selling a packet of potato chips for $.5 – as a part of promotion; you have a set goal in mind of increasing sales by encouraging customers to buy a $2 of soda to be consumed along with chips.
In a similar fashion, social media marketing too should have clearly defined goals. If you plan to run a social media campaign, without a goal – you are not marketing anything.
In this blog, I am going to list down some goals and how they can be achieved:
Goal 1: Selling a Product or Service Directly:
One of the easiest goals to define and one where you can send out clear messages.
- If you are attempting to sell products or services, try concentrating on a specific line or focus on a product and drive sales through that. In order to increase the sales, promote the campaign through tweets, facebook and linkedin. One of the most important factors that you must bear in mind is to add content that is engaging – if you want to coax people into making a purchase, the content should be able to bring the message across.
- If focus is on general sale and not a single product, focus on your knack at providing a brilliant service, high quality product or brand value. You may also choose to share your complete line of products – giving your prospects and customers an idea of what they may expect from you.
Goal 2: Using the estate on your blog:
Adsense, banner ads and Google adwords choose your site or blog, based on the traffic that your blog may generate. If the traffic on your site, meets their requirements, they may choose to show-case their ads with you. But, if the traffic is low, it will not be a lucrative option. In such a scenario, your social media marketing strategy should focus on driving traffic and encouraging repeat visitors. One of the best ways to make this possible is by creating exciting content and at the same time, encourage your visitors to share the content.
One of the other popular options SEO backlinks- is an effective way to generate more traffic. However, to make this a reality, you need to increase SERP (search engine results page) – by sharing content with other websites that have backlinks to your website. This can only be made possible if your content is great. Content that is dull and low quality may not encourage this.
Marketing Goals is all that matters
The most important part of any social media marketing is to have some form of goal – it may or may not be related to sales or products. Your goals could also be targeting at increasing your fans, followers, users or generate traffic. As long as you have a goal, you can utilize social media to reach that goal.
To push your goals, include a call-to-action in your messages – this will encourage your readers to share it with other.
Every time you find difficult catching your sleep at night, make use of your Smartphone like Smart Application. Yes, due to technological advancements we now have an application known as Sleep Cycle which has been devised on iPhone to help you get sound sleep. Costing $2 on your iPhone, the application might not literally help you sleep. But it lets you learn about good sleeping habits. It works using the sensors of your phone placed on the mattress to detect and record your movements. In fact you can study a detailed analysis of this by exporting the compiled data and knowing how long were you getting deep sleep and how many times were you falling asleep in the light mode.
For those who use the Android phone, do not worry. Sleepbot is the application designed to follow your sleep patterns through motion sensors of the Smartphone. The interface might not be so smart to use compared to Sleep cycle but this application will not let you down due its incredible performance. You can set the desired sleep times, or reminders for going to sleep and also study if your sleep has a correlation with a more quiet environment or otherwise. There is another application by the name of Simply Rain that plays soothing music to let you go off to sleep before shuttling off the music.
The new age application can surely let you know if there is any deficit in your sound sleep. If yes it will further let you understand the main reasons that you can overcome using these highly effective applications.
Cloud costing concept showing cloud icon on computer key. Cloud has been quite a news maker in the IT industry with increasing number of leading IT players opting for Cloud computing services. While most industrialists are increasing their profit margin with less manpower and better efficiency, environmentalist are frowning upon the energy consumed by the leading IT players to keep the service up and running.
An in-depth study conducted on energy sourcing and consumption by Greenpeace titled “How Clean is Your Cloud?” showed some alarming results. The study included data centers of some of the largest tech companies and investigated the data center deployments of 14 of the market leaders. Clean Energy Index, an evaluating system has been set by the International Environmental Organization with the main purpose being assessing & comparing energy linked footprints of cloud providers & their data centers.
Greenpeace has observed that there’s limited transparency with regards to electricity consumption by IT companies; this being the case despite the fact that there are various metrics for the purpose of measuring the consumption with the most prominent being PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness). As per Greenpeace, the data that depicts the dirty energy consumed (energy sourced from coal & nuclear power) & companies opting for clean source (renewable sources of energy) are poorly demarcated. Bearing this in mind, Greenpeace hopes that Clean Energy Index provides a clearer picture. The index considers recent investments & current energy supply related to these investments.
The most relevant findings of this index are:
- The 3 largest companies – Apple, Amazon & Microsoft are expanding rapidly but continue to behave irresponsibly towards the source of energy supply. As per reports, they rely heavily on dirty energy to keep their clouds up & running
- The most responsible companies were found to be Yahoo & Google, resorting to using renewable energy in their cloud expansion
- Facebook has also come on board with renewable energy. It has gone a step ahead and constructed a data center in Sweden that can be powered by renewable/ clean energy.
- The location for these data centers is also playing an important factor in the form of energy being consumed. Certain areas have a concentration of data centers around dirty energy sources. Its aggravating the environmental damage for that geography
- One of the first companies to give a detailed report of carbon intensity under the CUE (Carbon Utilization Effectiveness) standards is Akamai. As per Greenpeace, the rest of the companies chose to refrain from commenting about CUE.
- Though most IT companies have pitched cloud as a more “greener” option, they fail to back it up with valid reports supporting this claim.
Despite the picture not being perfect, there are encouraging signs that more & more IT companies are opting for renewable sources of energy, thus playing a positive role in shaping a better future for the earth.
In a competitive age, it is extremely desirable that IT Tool and services are developed to gain success through revenue generation, customer retention and compliance of regulations in the market. Datacenter is one avenue that can help achieve this goal of a business. Data centers can help a business make cost effective investments, decrease energy utilization and space consumption. It helps make optimum utilization of IT and mitigate risks, thereby enhancing service quality.
Modern data centers allow businesses to control server with higher flexibility and scalability. Thus this paves way for individual businesses to get accustomed to the surrounding environment. There is clarity in understanding the customers and hence further precision in decision making process. Data centers allow innovation to creep in by centralizing management, customer connections and development of new business schemes. Every organization incorporating data centers support virtualization and cloud computing in realizing the benefits of dedicated computing resources. But this does not mean businesses need to create physical infrastructure in every location where you intend your business to grow. Irrespective of the region, any business is certain to decrease physical server counts almost by 50 to 60% through datacenters.
The new age data centers perform at a faster rate of time, increases cost advantage, IT efficiency and higher infrastructure and operational mobility. However it is essential for every business to understand that a datacenter should not be over-engineered. There should be better understanding as to how will the gap between the software and the systems bridged to assist application development. Last but not the least an organization should judge the exact requirement for the inventory that is essential for proper capacity planning and for streamlining the consolidation process.
The Oracle Open World held at San Francisco 2013 revealed quite a few developments in the world of technology. The hardware and software systems giant Oracle unveiled 10 services of the cloud that let the customers make the most of the enterprise capabilities. One of its new features includes the Oracle cloud marketplace which allows its customers to surf internet, analyze and buy business applications.
- Compute Cloud
- Java Cloud
- Mobile Cloud
- Object Storage Cloud
- Documents Cloud
- Database Backup Cloud
- Business Intelligence Cloud
- Database Cloud
- Billing and Revenue Management
Cloud These are the rest of the services from the Cloud Model.
With a customer base of 10,000 companies, the Oracle Cloud takes care of as many as 18 billion transactions every day. All these services have been conceptualized and launched with an aim to offer innovate and reliable business applications to its customers. The developers have created mobile application programming interfaces to allow integration of their applications along with enterprise data and services. On the other hand, with Database Oracle the user can configure the volume of storage they require. While they do this, Oracle will handle the cloud database through a back up at night. If need be, it will manage the patches, updates of the software and maintenance services as well. The new Java Cloud functions on the basis of WebLogic Server clusters. The good news is that it can be modified with any Java application. This feature allows three alternatives of basic, maximum availability and managed on a monthly subscription basis. Just this sneak-peek into the whole gamut of Cloud services and as a user you already can feel the excitement.