Exciting B2B Marketing Trends You Need to Know in 2021

Exciting B2B Marketing Trends You Need to Know in 2021

B2B marketing keeps evolving, and the faster you pick up on key trends, the closer you move toward crushing your goals. The shift to the “digital first” approach to B2B marketing has been quite evident since 2020 when the pandemic began. However, that’s not the only trend you should be looking at in 2021. Here, we’re going to turn your attention to some of the most critical B2B marketing trends you need to follow this year.

Of course, there are certain B2B marketing trends that will almost never fade away: customer-centricity, social media marketing (LinkedIn), and paid search ads. Having said that, you can’t afford to miss out on the following trends if you are to do B2B marketing right in 2021.

1. Account-based Marketing

The phrase “quality over quantity” is apt for account-based marketing (ABM). Enabling high-quality lead generation and enhanced relevance in B2B marketing, ABM targets highest-value accounts right from the word go. This is unlike traditional marketing where you cast a wide net to draw prospects in and then qualify the best-fit ones.

If you’re serious about achieving B2B marketing success, ABM should be a top priority, period. With ABM, you can build strong relationships with and deliver tailored experiences to the decision-making unit and other stakeholders at your target accounts. This allows increased conversion rates, shorter sales cycles, low resource wastage, high engagement and retention, and a better ROI.

Statistics show that ABM works great for improving win rates and customer lifetime values as reported by 86% and 80% of marketers respectively. Furthermore, ABM initiatives outperform other marketing investments, according to 87% of marketers using ABM.

Here’s what you need to follow to implement an ABM strategy that gets the desired results.

  • Find and define top-value, ABM-focused accounts and carefully research each of them
  • Target these accounts with hyper-personalized, highly relevant content and messaging
  • Foster long-term, value-adding relationships with them through their preferred channels
  • Ensure interconnectedness and alignment between your sales and marketing teams
  • Build a robust ABM team and assign specific roles and responsibilities to each team member
  • Measure campaign results by looking at key metrics like ROI, total revenue, deal size, account engagement and penetration, deal-to-close time, etc.

2. B2B Videos

Do you use B2B videos only for marketing and promotion? If yes, you’re still not using videos to their fullest potential. With the rising trend of ABM and more consumers wanting to learn from and about brands, it makes sense to create videos that educate and entertain them. This not only helps build a rapport with the target audience, but also enables remarketing, audience retention, engagement, and conversion.

Video has helped 84% of marketers with lead generation. In comparison with other content types, it’s preferred by 68% of consumers to learn about new services or products. Also, note that it helps with 157% growth in organic traffic from SERPs.

Use longer videos to further push prospects across their buyer’s journey after they’ve already engaged with your brand. Otherwise, if you’re using videos to increase brand awareness, promote a new product, or generate leads, ensure that you keep them shorter.

Embed videos in your written content to boost its effectiveness. You can also publish videos on your website, YouTube, and other social media platforms and use them in your email sequences, native advertising, search ads, sponsored content, product reviews, influencer outreach, etc. Be sure to use CTAs in your videos in a way that’s as disruptive as possible.

Another way to create successful videos is to closely study your target audience and outline your specific B2B video marketing goals. Map out your buyer personas and identify channels that your target audience spends most of their time on.

Additionally, check if the purpose of your video aligns with your marketing goal or the specific marketing funnel stage you’re targeting. For example, a video could be solely created to amplify awareness, generate interest, spark desire in your solution, or push prospects to become customers.

3. Data Intelligence

Data-driven approach is a hot B2B marketing trend. Not to mention, data is the lifeblood of B2B marketing. Without B2B data, it’ll be challenging for you to target today’s informed consumers, penetrate new markets, and keep track of your target audience throughout their buyer’s journey.

According to statistics, businesses were able to deliver 5-8X the ROI on their marketing spend when they employed data-driven personalization. Further, 88% of marketers improve their understanding of each customer by using third-party data.

If you haven’t yet, start using B2B data in your marketing campaigns so you could:

  • Enable easier account or contact management
  • Build perfect buyer personas and identify target audiences
  • Personalize marketing content and customer touchpoints
  • Increase brand awareness, authority, and trust
  • Allow optimal lead generation and accurate lead scoring

For better B2B marketing results, consider using different types of data.

For example, you can use B2B contact data to reach prospects faster, implement multichannel marketing, and target each contact individually. With firmographics and technographics, you can better segment your audiences, customize B2B marketing campaigns, and gain deep insights into your target audience based on company and technology attributes. Intent data allows you to understand the online behavior of prospects, catch their buying signals, and know their interests, needs, and pain points beforehand.

Prior to using any B2B data, make sure it’s clean, updated, accurate, and complete. When looking for a B2B data partner, ensure that you research them well, take a free trial first, check if they are GDPR or CCPA-compliant, see if they have high data quality and coverage standards, and maintain contract transparency.

4. Artificial Intelligence

There’s no denying that artificial intelligence (AI) is the talk in the B2B marketing world. AI is redefining B2B marketing in many ways, and its adoption is expected to increase in future. Did you know? In 2020, chatbots were already included in the customer experience strategy of 80% of marketers. Furthermore, AI could be useful for personalization, 71% of marketers agree.

Equip your B2B marketers with AI to optimize and automate certain content creation tasks. Leverage AI to produce more engaging, personalized CTAs, subject lines, messages, and dynamic ad newsletters. Increase the interest of website visitors in your brand or product by creating resonating messages and allowing your content to adapt with the help of AI. Moreover, you can use AI to create hyper-personalized ads, emails, texts, pop-ups, social conversations, and product recommendations.

What’s more? With AI, your B2B marketers can:

  • Take the difficulty out of tedious, time-consuming SEO activities
  • Allow better and wider shopping experiences
  • Enable quality lead generation and improved lead targeting
  • Offer useful and deeper customer insights
  • Identify the right content and messaging to get in front of prospects
  • Use predictive analytics to identify the most effective time to target prospects

Wrapping Up

It’s crucial for your business to stay abreast of the latest B2B marketing trends and implement them as part of your 2021 strategy in the best way possible. By focusing on the trends discussed above, you can position your brand to stay ahead of the competition and better prepare to reach your B2B marketing targets this year.

As a bonus tip, we’d suggest you to not lose focus on other important B2B marketing trends like re-optimizing and repurposing existing content, local search optimization, podcasting, voice engagement, and marketing automation.