We entered a new decade at the dawn of 2021. Previous decade began with a lot of businesses realizing the importance of exploring the digital landscape to expand their horizons. The spread of pandemic towards the end forced even more businesses to explore this avenue and as a result B2B digital marketing gained a fresh momentum.
While the opportunities have grown manifolds and possibilities are endless, the competitiveness has also grown proportionately. Innovation has become the key to surviving digital Darwinism. Digital content marketing strategies, search engine optimization (SEO) and other technology driven strategies now have a fair share of budget when it comes to overall marketing spends.
So, what are the B2B marketing trends that businesses ought to capture in the year 2021 to get that competitive edge? Below we mention some of the significant trends that cannot be ignored.
1) Content Marketing will continue to remain at the center of all campaigns: Digital content will continue to be the king. Google’s algorithm keeps getting smarter. Especially after BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers-a paper published by Google’s AI Language researchers) update, it is believed that the ‘context’ of the content based on the user ‘intent’ has gained more prominence. Hence, content backed by proper keyword research, intended audience profiling, and analytical data etc will hold the key.
2) Influencer Marketing will gain momentum: Having eminent social media personalities on board to promote various products and services has already been in vogue when it comes to B2C marketing. In 2021, B2B campaigns will also tend to exploit it to the fullest because of its huge potential to drive sales. Moreover, it builds brand trust and loyalty. Influencer contents like case studies, webinars, video contents, and blog contents will continue to hit the platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook etc. TopRank Marketing has some interesting statistics related to this here.
3) Artificial Intelligence (AI) enabled marketing: AI is a great tool to trace digital footprints of consumers in order to understand their behavior and choices which in turn helps businesses to launch targeted marketing campaigns. Also, AI tools like Chatbots have already become an integral part of websites and according to a study, 67% of customers globally reported using a chatbot for customer support in 2017. There is no reason to believe that this number wouldn’t have grown since then. AI also facilitates programmatic Advertising, Semantic Searching, email personalization etc and hence, it is going to be a great tool for lead generation.
4) Video content marketing will increase its share: According to a study by Wyzowl, 86% of people would like to see more video from brands in 2020. Also, people watch an average of 16 hours of online video per week – a 52% increase in the last 2 years. It is safe to assume that video content marketing will continue to gain prominence and they are likely to offer a great ROI.
5) Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR/AR) will add more value to marketing strategies: According to Statista, total AR/VR spending worldwide was projected to amount to 12 billion U.S. dollars in 2020, and this is set to rise considerably to 72.8 billion U.S. dollars through 2024. While VR is great for simulated experiences, AR offers you an interactive experience to try products virtually. For example, L’Oreal’s makeup app allows users to try out various types of makeup online.
6) Customer Retention Marketing: Acquiring new customers is usually more expensive than retaining older ones. According to a study, a 5% increase in customer retention can increase company revenue by 25-95%. Hence, investing in improving communication mechanisms, customer education and onboarding, best in class customer support, and customer appreciation etc., can really be a great way to optimize your marketing ROI.