Three tips for B2B marketers to meet inflated client expectations
Magali Germain, marketing director EMEA at GMC Software, explores how to meet the increased demands of B2B buyers
B2B marketers are experiencing increased demands for instant communication, easy brand interactions and the ability to access information across a range of devices, so updates can be accessed on the go.
At the turn of the year I saw many B2B marketing leaders making resolutions focused on making themselves better internally, rather than thinking about things from the perspective of their customers. Surely they’re missing a trick. We are increasingly seeing advances in consumer technology driving people to expect an improved experience in their working lives too; in particular B2B marketers are beginning to see demand for instant communication, easy interactions with brand contacts and for information to be made available across a range of devices, so updates can be accessed on the go.
Here are three ways brands can update their strategy to ensure they’re giving client contacts exactly what they expect:
1. More devices, more metrics
Gartner says worldwide smartphone sales grew almost 10 per cent in the final quarter of 2015, and mobile devices are playing an increasingly important role in day-to-day business operations. Making content suitable for mobile devices, and ensuring communication is possible through them, has a crucial role to play in building a strong relationship.
There are an ever-increasing number of communications channels through which marketing outreaches need to be measured. As they continue to solidify and evolve, new technological developments such as social media and connected devices are becoming increasingly valuable to businesses. As such, B2B marketers must identify ways to include insights and data points from these sources wherever possible.
2. A consistent experience across different channels
As Forrester says, brands are set to become increasingly customer-obsessed over the next few years, which will accelerate the maturity of business technology and end-to-end solutions. Companies are increasingly acknowledging the importance of the customer experience in terms of mining powerful data and insights. While the social media revolution has had a more tangible early impact for the B2C world, consumer-facing brands are much more likely to have nailed down the important details.
It’s time for many B2B marketers to play catch-up; in particular, having a single voice across different channels has a crucial role to play in providing consistent messaging as part of an omnichannel experience. It’s also important that these channels do not become siloed, because insights gathered from every individual one must be fed back into the system and used elsewhere.
3. The rise of the chief data officer and chief experience officer
New to most organisations, these people will have a crucial role to play in improving customer experience and communications by making the most of the new wealth of data and insights that will businesses are beginning to amass. Gartner predicts that by 2017 50 per cent of organisations in regulated industries will have a chief data officer, and these c-suite newcomers will have an important part to play in discovering and remedying discrepancies in in user experience. It’s time to start giving customer experience serious thought, with plenty of options available for companies looking to enhance the experience they give. Investing the time in thinking more strategically about customer interaction is a recipe for success in this new age.