Many experts are convinced that the world is not going back to how it was before the global pandemic struck – Or at least not for a long time. Operating in the “new normal” emphasizes on socially-distanced interactions and heavily relying on technology. For B2B organizations, this means changing the way that they operate in all aspects including marketing, promotions, public relations, engagement, sales, etc.
Thankfully, during the course of this year, there has been a plethora of new marketing and sales strategies that have helped the B2B business move forward. Now, the question is which of these sales/marketing adaptations are going to stick around even after the pandemic?
Everything is Digital
With gatherings restricted in just about every major city no matter where in the world, companies and businesses have moved to hold conferences, events, meetings, and all other face-to-face gatherings online.
Webinars have become the forerunners for digital meetings/events, and the future for it is looking bright. In the midst of the novel coronavirus, Brands are scrambling to figure out how to recreate the in-person experience online, turning to a mix of webinars, presentations, teleconferences, group Slack channels, Twitter chats, and other digital communications channels. Everything is going digital faster than ever before.
It’s still too early to tell if these approaches will take off, but at no time in the past has there been such a widespread disruption in the way companies do business. This push, though born out of practicality and necessity, may finally be what pushes business past the conference and onto the internet. This is especially true for B2B industries, where change has been slow, and marketers have been reluctant to let go of the convention floor.
CMOs are seeking efficiency and optimization and so are likely to maintain increased marketing technology budgets related to marketing performance management, customer analytics, and customer feedback. B2B marketing leaders will go a step further and actively increase their investment and more fervently adopt marketing automation technologies to facilitate better-targeted digital relationship building and digital engagement. They relied on traditional relationship channels for so long and — before the pandemic — had plans to increase investments. We think the pandemic will solidify their intentions.
B2B Remote Work
Acclimate your sales and marketing teams to work-from-home (WFH) options. Offsite strategy sessions in posh locations are gone. So now what? I believe professional service firms that pivot the fastest to high-performing remote-work options will be the winners. Everyone else will be catching up, slowly. If you haven’t embraced WFH, do it now.
COVID-19 has accelerated the need for B2B marketers to engage in full digital pipelines. For now, you cannot use direct mail to office locations, or trade shows for lead generation and deal closing, so it’s all happening online. Because of this, the data pools are growing, and B2B marketers need to up their game in this department. The good news is that this data can be leveraged for increased ROI using account-based marketing
It’s undeniable how the pandemic has impacted the world in unprecedented ways, and that impact is likely to continue to grow. Either way, brands and B2B businesses need to prepare for the world after the coronavirus to be drastically different than the world as it was at the end of 2019, and they need to be ready to adapt to those differences quickly.