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.