10 Provocative Predictions for Marketing Success in 2017
In a busy age, it’s hard to stop and reflect on what we’ve learned. As a marketer, you’re probably knee-deep into executing your 2017 plans already. Still, we’ve emerged from an eventful year. As B2B marketing pros, it’s a good time to briefly pause and consider the ideas that should shape our thinking for the year ahead.
Peg’s 5 predictions for 2017 B2B marketing priorities
As I reflect upon 2016 and predict priorities going into 2017, I’ve observed the following rising trends within B2B marketers:
1. Renewed focus on the fundamentals.
As much progress as we’ve made with modern marketing techniques, the majority of B2B companies are still challenged to achieve an ideal state. I predict more focus on the fundamentals.
2. Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.
There is no such thing as a perfect situation. What sets the best B2B marketers apart from the pack is our ability to achieve the most within current situations while striving everyday to lead the organization to a more ideal state.
3. More emphasis on the bottom of the funnel.
The post-sale funnel portion of the funnel gains new notoriety as companies invest in marketing strategy and content to retain current customers and gain more share of wallet.
4. The best B2B marketers are those who align the entire organization.
Marketers who enlist their sales team, customer success team and influencers to help execute strategy at scale will out-hustle their peers.
5. Marketing and marketers are on the rise.
B2B marketers continue to gain influence within their organizations, especially when they are at the center of account-based marketing strategies requiring cross-functional buy-in and execution. Winning marketers are well aligned with their company, business and revenue goals, acting as the driving force to put strategy into execution.
Christine’s 5 picks for B2B marketing mojo in 2017
Expect more experimentation in the B2B marketing for 2017. New strategies and tools for reaching buyers in a more authentic way allow B2B marketers to engage more effectively in a vastly changed world.
1. We live in the post-truth era, so B2B marketers have to work 2x harder to earn credibility.
With headlines dominated by fake news, gaining trust is harder than ever. 2017 is the perfect time to showcase that you’re an authentic brand. Show that your enterprise is a collective of humans who deserve the chance to serve your buyers. And don’t count on traditional B2B approaches to do the trick. In 2017, B2B brands need to embrace modern thought leadership and humanizing marketing strategies.
2. Aim big data using human intuition.
As we ramp up use of predictive tech and AI in 2017, use it to test your collective intuition and working assumptions about customers and business trends. Where your experts’ instincts and data match, do the victory dance. Where they don’t, dig in and find out why.
3. MarTech isn’t just for geeks anymore.
Everyone in marketing needs to do more with less, and do it better. There are tantalizing new tools for nearly every aspect of marketing. From content creators and social media pros to product and field marketers – everyone needs to actively use MarTech. Most importantly, B2B marketers today get near-instant insights on prospects and customers from marketing automation systems. Those insights are only good when the entire marketing team can see and act on them.
4. Reach real people with modern B2B tactics.
We live in the golden age of marketing–complete with MarTech, big data, an exploding social universe, and modern account based marketing. As you embrace these strategies, tech and tools–don’t forget the real goal. Job #1 is to connect with real people. AI bots that generate fake followers and other bad ideas do nothing to build your brand.
5. 2017 will be the year of modern storytelling goes mainstream in B2B.
Conversations flow seamlessly from digital to sales and service people then back throughout a customer’s or prospect’s experience. To be relevant, you need to be where they are and earn the right to advise them. How? Design your content marketing and campaign strategy to serve every part of the buyer’s journey. Many have talked about ‘full funnel’ marketing, 2017 is the year to put it into practice.