B2B marketing is awash with amazing technology designed to enhance what we do. But where do marketers start? How can they be sure that a solution is right for them? And what area should they be investing in? These were some of the fascinating questions that dominated the most recent Martechopia, hosted by B2B Marketing.
We had a great time learning all about the future of martech, from the perspective of both marketers looking to buy a solution and the vendors showcasing them. So we thought we’d share six of the most inspiring lessons we took away from this year’s event.
Onboarding new martech starts with sales, but it certainly doesn’t end there. Customer satisfaction for newly integrated solutions might not be measurable for months or even years after a sale’s completion. And since only 11% of marketers report being satisfied with their martech stack for both current and future needs, pinning down the best role for sales is key. In the meantime, emphasising continuous product support will vastly improve the martech experience, bringing it to life for consumers while securing future business.
Case studies have always been powerful tools of persuasion to sell tech. But the personal testimony of people using it on a daily basis has untapped potential. As we continue to find ways to humanise B2B marketing, there are few more compelling ways to do that than a personal recommendation. For brands, continuous training for each wave of worker intake will be vital to ensuring that a balance is struck between authenticity and the proper adherence to brand guidelines.
Great campaigns stem from a fundamental knowledge of the client — which means knowing them inside out. But too often, that knowledge hinges on conversations with a company’s CMO, rather than department chiefs across the business. This situation can sometimes slide into a relationship where crossed wires occur, because marketing and business functions aren’t properly aligned across client and agency. Marketing targets (meetings booked) aren’t necessarily business targets (revenue generated). This makes strong relationships with CFOs, CEOs and heads of IT crucial.
Data quality is vital for effective marketing campaigns. But a recent survey suggests that 50% of B2B firms lack confidence in the quality of their own data sets. Establishing a system for data storage — setting up naming conventions, for example, or tagging metadata consistently — is fundamental, especially when adopting martech that’s supposed to yield that data for insights. Standardising your marketing metrics — ideally aligning them more closely with revenue — is one way to ensure that a new solution is primed to give you useful intelligence.
Making Intent data more sensitive to the early behaviours of potential prospects across different platforms was a big focus at Martechopia this year. One solution that caught our eye was LeadSift, which allows marketers to draw Intent data from social media. The benefits of this are obvious — buyer activity is spread across so many more channels, so being able to draw from LinkedIn and similar places is a real advantage as targeted ads and social selling become the norm.
When it comes to martech, some organisations are suffering from buyer’s regret. This was especially true during the pandemic, which increased the pressure for professionals to source solutions quickly. But a lack of satisfaction with your current set-up shouldn’t dim your enthusiasm for innovative, new products. The fact remains that a properly considered martech stack is essential to nurturing prospects.
According to Jeremy Miller’s Sticky Branding, only 3% of buyers are actually ready to buy. Engaging the rest requires sophisticated tools to assess the stages at which a potential buyer is at. And, as the Harvard Business Review points out, buyer journeys are getting increasingly complicated and asymmetrical.
One of the underlying takeaways from Martechopia’s latest edition might be the importance of careful, strategic decision-making around adding to a tech stack. In many ways, B2B marketers are like most buyers — we expect quick, convenient solutions to increasingly complex problems. But, to paraphrase Albert Einstein, we might benefit from spending most of our time figuring out the problem, and dedicating a bit less time focusing purely on the solution. Only then can we realise the full potential that martech undoubtedly offers.