This is the eighth in a series of guest posts for Silverpop written by Jeff Ogden, president of B2B lead generation company Find New Customers.
Since I work for my own sales lead generation company, I’m free to watch the industry and see trends before they happen. That enables me to share inside information with you — information you probably won’t get anywhere else.
It seems clear to me today that three major trends are going to make the world of B2B marketing very different in the next three years. To give you a jump on everyone else, we want to alert you to three trends causing seismic shifts in B2B marketing.
The first game-changing trend is mobile. The world is going mobile. A recent article in the business section of The New York Times talked about the remarkable comeback of e-Bay. How did they do it? They recognized the move to mobile early and bet the company on it. As the article stated, their traditional business didn’t come back – they adapted to a new way of doing business.
The reality is that executives in the companies you sell to all have smartphones, primarily Androids or iPhones. They are connected 7 x 24. They get most of their information on their smartphones. This is only going to increase as mobile becomes the primary means of connecting with prospective customers.
For a great video on the new world of mobile, watch mobile marketing expert Christina “CK” Kerley on Marketing Made Simple TV.
The second game-changing trend is social. People want to connect with each other and are doing it with social media. Ignore social at your peril.
In the same issue of The New York Times, it was reported that Apple is considering a major investment in Twitter. This just demonstrates the fast-growing importance of social.
On Marketing Made Simple TV, Jim Lenskold of the Lenskold Group told me that, “If Content is King (in B2B marketing), then surely social media is Queen.” Social is the best way to share content. Jim is right.
Social media is huge today, and it has made great strides in the last few years. But I believe in two to three years it will dwarf what’s happening today. Case in point, the next version of Outlook will integrate with LinkedIn. That’s just the start.
Today, you can use tools like Salesforce Radian 6 to monitor, track and react in real time on social media.
The third and final game-changing trend – “Video is the killer app for mobile,” says CK Kerley. And Fast Company just published a great article, “Why Short-Form Video is the Future of Marketing,” on the topic. Basil Publisi, the founder of Digital Ethos, calls video “an information experience” that is the top form of communication because it embraces body language.” It’s clear that video is the wave of the future in B2B marketing.
It’s also important to look to non-traditional forms of video marketing, as well as traditional camera/studio approaches. Not only do you not need an expensive video camera and set, but companies like Avitage have innovative ways of creating video without a camera. And it’s also possible to create your own B2B marketing show, as SandHill.com’s article “How a B2B software company can benefit from an online TV show” points out.
Three major changes in B2B marketing are speeding down the tracks heading for your company today. Smart companies are getting ahead of the curve by adapting to those changes before their competitors.