Top 14 Major B2B Marketing Trends for 2023 and Beyond
Daily, we keep track of the latest trends in B2B marketing to help our clients stay ahead of their competition. We are also interested in sharing this information with you! In this article, we’ll discuss 14 trends that will shape B2B marketing over the next few years — trends that are already having an impact on how companies market themselves online.
Market research is a key component of any business, but it’s especially important for B2B marketers. Research helps you understand your audience and competition, as well as provides insight into the market and industry trends.
There are many types of market research: primary or qualitative research (interviews), secondary or quantitative research (surveys), or predictive models like machine learning algorithms. While all data points are important, we’ll focus on primary qualitative market research because it provides more insight than secondary quantitative methods such as surveys.
Buyer-Focused Content Marketing
Buyer-focused content marketing is about creating content that is relevant to a buyer’s needs.
This type of B2B marketing strategy can be used for all three stages of the buyer journey: awareness, education, and trust. With this approach, you’re focusing on helping your buyers learn more about your brand and products/services without being overly promotional. Content marketing allows you to narrow down who your target audience is by understanding what they want and need through research when creating new campaigns (a technique known as persona development). Once these personas have been created, it’s easier to design a sales funnel that creates awareness through content creation while also educating prospects on specific topics related to their industry or job role within an organization so they can make informed decisions about buying something from your company later down the road (i.e., after they’ve already decided which vendor would best meet their needs).
As you know, customers are always ready to buy. They’re looking at their phones and waiting for you to connect with them at any moment. They can be reached on the go, in any location, and they want what you have right now.
Customers don’t want to wait until they get back home or into an office so they can make a purchase decision—they are always in buying mode. If your company isn’t prepared to meet its needs when they need them most, then your brand will lose out on business opportunities.
For example, A customer wakes up in the morning before heading off to work and sees an advertisement from Starbucks on his phone about its new iced coffee line; later that afternoon, he buys one of these coffees from another street vendor because he wants something cold; after work, he goes home where he sees another ad for more details on how much healthier this particular drink is compared with other brands; finally at 8 PM after dinner has been cooked by his wife (who hasn’t bought anything yet), she decides she’s going out tonight with her friends so sets up reservations using OpenTable while sitting there watching TV together as part of a micro-moment marketing strategy that makes use of several different channels throughout their lives instead just focusing on one channel like Facebook or Pinterest (or even just Google Search).
Account-based marketing (ABM) is a strategy that focuses on the most important accounts in your market. It’s about identifying your key accounts and then developing a strategy to reach out to them.
If you use ABM correctly, it can help you build relationships with customers, gain a competitive advantage over other companies, and grow revenue for your business through increased sales or higher margins.
- AI is the future of marketing. A recent survey found that more than 80% of marketers plan to adopt AI for their marketing efforts by 2021.
- AI is the future of sales. The same study also found that 80% will use AI for sales automation, with almost half (46%) planning on implementing it by 2020. And it’s not hard to find evidence that this shift is already taking place—for example, Microsoft recently released an automated Chabot product for its Dynamics 365 CRM software platform that enables companies to interact with customers via text messages and voice calls without having to hire additional personnel or purchase expensive hardware like telephones (which some organizations may not even have access to).
Personalization is the new normal, but many marketers are still not quite sure what it means. Most marketing messages are not personalized at all, and even when they are, they often aren’t accurate or relevant to the individual consumer. Personalization is not about making a one-size-fits-all marketing message; it’s about using data to make a marketing message that is relevant to each individual consumer.
Influencers — More Human and Narrowly Focused
Influencers are more human and narrowly focused. Influencers aren’t just celebrities but people with a passion for a particular topic—and who are also trustworthy in their area of expertise. In the past decade, influencer marketing has become an increasingly popular way to promote brands and products online through word-of-mouth recommendations from trusted sources.
In fact, according to eMarketer’s latest report on B2B digital marketing trends, 70% of marketers said that they plan to increase their use of influencer marketing tactics over the next three years.
This means that you’ll need your own set of experts who can help drive conversations about your brand within their respective communities—and make sure those conversations are positive!
Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Advertising
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are hot topics in marketing at the moment, so much so that they are expected to drive a lot of changes over the next few years. But what would that mean for your company? AI can be used in many ways, but here are some of the most important:
- Creating better ads
- Targeting ads
- Buying ads
More and Better AI Platforms for Marketing and Sales
AI platforms have been around for a while now, but they’re getting better and more sophisticated by the day. And it’s not just for marketing and sales anymore—AI can also be used in customer service, product development, and human resources (HR).
In fact, you may have already experienced AI when you called a company’s customer service line to ask about something. They might’ve asked you to speak into your phone so that it could figure out what you’re saying. That’s one example of how AI is being used in customer service—but there are many others:
- In HR departments: A number of companies are using artificial intelligence (AI) to help with hiring decisions by crunching tons of data on candidates’ resumes and work histories. For example, Google uses AI algorithms to scan job applications for “bias” against certain groups like women or minorities (i.e., whether someone has listed their gender as female)
Customer Experience Will Be Everything
Customer experience will be everything.
The customer experience is the new marketing, sales, and everything else. It’s a differentiator that will help you win some clients and lose others in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Now more than ever, if you want to succeed at B2B marketing in 2023, focus on providing an excellent experience for your prospects and customers.
- AI for Email Marketing
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being used to improve email marketing.
AI can help with segmentation, targeting, and personalization. It can also help with analytics, automation, and personalization.
Video for Lead Generation, Education, and Nurturing Prospects
Not surprisingly, video is a great way to convert leads into customers. It can also be used for lead generation and education purposes, as well as nurturing prospects. Video is a good way to get your message across and show off your product or service.
Video has the power to educate prospects on different aspects of what you do, including how it works and why they need it/you in their lives. It’s also an excellent tool if you want to nurture leads who may not be ready yet – you can send them helpful information through videos that they don’t even have to watch right away!
Predictive Analytics —The New Normal for B2B Companies of All Sizes
Predictive analytics is a powerful tool that can help you better understand your customers and make smarter decisions, but it’s also something that most people don’t know much about.
What is predictive analytics? The term refers to an analytic process in which historical data is used to predict future outcomes. The goal of predictive analytics is to determine how likely it will be for something (like a specific action) to happen given certain conditions or variables. This type of analysis uses statistics to estimate the probability of an event based on past performance or existing data, then uses this information as part of decision-making processes like designing marketing campaigns or boosting sales through targeted outreach strategies.
Predictive analytics allows businesses large and small to more easily identify patterns in their customer data so they can customize experiences based on what works best for each individual prospect at any given time—not just once per quarter during annual reviews like most companies currently do with their annual reports! For example: let’s say you run an ecommerce website selling apparel items such as shoes and jackets; traditionally, these types of products have been sold through brick-and-mortar stores because customers need them right away (or else they won’t fit properly). But what if you could use predictive modeling technology instead? With this type of system set up properly (which means having multiple layers built into place), then when someone orders something online, there would be no need anymore for rush shipping charges–you would simply ship out whatever size was requested without having any problems whatsoever.”
Niche Social Networks Will Be a Producer of Great Leads and Customers. Just Wait.
Niche social networks are a great place to reach interested customers, especially if you’re looking for new leads or business partners.
Also known as micro-networks or interest groups, these platforms allow you to connect with specific audiences based on their shared passions and interests. They can be incredibly powerful because they give your audience a sense of community and allow them to feel engaged in the conversation with you—which makes it more likely that they’ll take action when you ask them to do something.
There are several niche social networks that have huge audiences with highly engaged members, but there are also plenty that isn’t worth your time (or money). To find the best ones for your company’s needs, check out our guide on finding niche communities for B2B marketers: How To Find Niche Communities For Your Business.
The good news is that B2B marketers are already doing a lot of these things. They’re just not calling them trends. And they’re not making the mistake of trying to do too much at once or buying all the tools in a single go. Instead, they’re setting up simple processes and focusing on one or two key areas at a time: for example, using email automation software and social media advertising to prospect for sales leads.
Devid Parker has been a Marketing Strategist for more than a decade. He is a full-time marketing strategist working in SchoolDataLists, a company that provides education industry data for businesses. Devid has been part of the research of the education industry market for the past five years.