B2B marketers are always looking for an edge -- something that will set their business and efforts apart from others. A new study from BtoB Online (with Eloqua) of 556 digitally active marketers found that modern marketers embrace technology, digital channels and dynamic content and have a commitment to sales enablement. When asked at what stage their companies are in improving go-to-marketing effectiveness, 68% said they are "strongly" or "fully" committed to improvement. In order to improve marketing effectiveness, spend some time considering whether or not your marketing team is changing with the times. Modern marketers need three things to be successful: digital aptitude, content knowledge, and sales enablement skills.
1. Digital Aptitude
The world of marketing is increasingly becoming more data driven. Marketers want to make sure that their time, money, and other resources are being directed to the right place. Successful modern marketers are making the most of data and digital solutions so no time or budget is wasted. At Business.com, virtually every marketing investment (of dollars and resources) is data-driven. While creating the infrastructure, processes and systems to support this requires an investment of time and money, it definitely pays off. When asked what has contributed the most to modern marketing, 60% responded that the ability to track marketing ROI with technology has contributed the most to modern marketing. "Big Data" is a concern for modern marketers as 35% said they are working to overcome poor infrastructures in the collection and analysis of data and 29% said they simply lack data to support their colleagues in sales. With the use of data and software solutions that are audience-oriented, modern marketers can reach target prospects more effectively.
2. Content Knowledge
An emphasis on content marketing has led to a shift in marketing as a whole. From where content is distributed to what type of content is produced, marketers must make sure they're getting the right content to the right people. When asked what has contributed the most to modern marketing, many indicated the ability to track ROI as noted earlier. However, a large portion of those surveyed (42%) indicated that the shift in power from the brand to the customer is changing marketing. Another 58% of respondents cited the effective use of social media. This is huge because social media networks are a main content distribution channel for B2B marketers. Prospects want content and marketers know they need to provide it. Demand-generation and lead nurturing techniques are changing because of this. In fact, 42% respondents cited the maturation of demand generation and lead nurturing as a contribution to the change in modern marketing. You need to know the type of content that will most appeal to your audience as well as how to get it into the hands of those people in order to be effective. That's where sales skills come in.
3. Sales Enablement Skills
Understanding the buyer journey, the key decision makers and influencers as well as their roles and responsibilities can help marketers more clearly define their profiling for greater success. Modern marketers need to build relationships with buyers just as sales representatives do. The rise in both content marketing and social provide the vehicle for creating and nurturing these relationships. When asked what factors are driving the needs of modern marketers, 60% of respondents identified the need to achieve fast and relevant touch points in the market, 35% identified increasing difficulties in conveying timely offers and messages to specific customers, and 12% indicated a general decline in the awareness of brands. Getting marketing and sales working together can make a huge difference in the efficiency and success of your business in connecting and closing with prospects.
Modern B2B marketers will make the most of the data and software solutions in front of them to yield the greatest ROI. Having a digital aptitude is necessary as the business world becomes more data driven and efficient with technology. Understanding the customer, the buying process and the decision makers can help marketers develop more targeted content that sells without directly selling. Content that converts is and must be a focus. Successful modern marketers are able align targeting with changing market and business needs.
What other qualities does a modern marketer need to possess?