One marketing year draws to a close and another gets into gear and with it the pundits start dusting down their prediction piece tropes to gaze at a brave new world of customer engagement. This coming year the B2C boys predict wearable tech, mobile payments and virtual reality in their crystal balls and are hailing Meerkat and Periscope as the possible next big things, along with every form of video of course – whether it’s 360-degree video on Facebook or ad-utilisation in Google. The next 12 months will be the year in which B2C brands need to adapt to the increasingly non-linear journey customers are taking in the sales cycle, making the experience more relevant, personalised and consistent, if those customers are still to be relevant to them.
As for B2B, the vicissitudes of the consumer sales experience are a long way from the more slow burn sales generating enjoyed in the business environment. For B2B the sales window is longer and the emphasis on brand building far greater.
With this in mind over 50 per cent of business brands in the US are claiming that they will be increasing content marketing spend in 2016. Online traffic and sales lead generation have always been the benchmark of success but for the first time they feel the most important metrics are going to be the quality of those sales leads and higher conversion rates. The US-based Content Marketing Institute has found that B2B members believe content marketing effectiveness levels are down in 2015 in fact, rather worryingly, the majority are unsure what content marketing success looks like. The least effective are the brands that do not have a documented content marketing strategy, a trait that is shared with B2C in the UK.
Having a documented editorial mission statement is a key facet of an effective B2B content marketing strategy, as is having a team that can plan and create engaging content to deliver the vision.
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