We are currently attending the 2018 SiriusDecisions Summit in Las Vegas where more than 3,000 B2B marketers are learning the latest in marketing from customer engagement to content strategy and account based marketing. Similar to last year’s blog, we have compiled our list of key insights from the last three days. In a crowded marketspace, it helps us all to share our innovative marketing tips. Needless to say it was a an interesting journey…
1. Be smart about your roadmap for Artificial Intelligence (AI) in marketing. AI and machine learning are the buzz words of the year but implementing AI just for the sake of it won’t get you the customer engagement you are looking for. At SiriusDecisions they suggest a crawl, walk, run, fly process that should be the foundation for an undertaking so large.
2. Many companies are actually on the crawl path to AI – for example cleaning and enriching data and attribution. The next phases Sirius recommends to look at include
- Content – offering the right content continuously and responsively
- Personalization of everything in real time
- Engagement of prospects at scale, all the time (e.g. mail, chatbot)
In addition, propensity based marketing can now be empowered by predictive analytics and the AI platform as well.
3. It is never too late to reinvent your brand. Molly Bloom, key note speaker at this year’s SiriusDecisions summit, spoke about her journey from college student to world class athlete to running one of the most successful private poker games in the world – where celebrities such as Ben Affleck and Leonardo DiCaprio attend. The lesson: your brand is not static, it is always evolving.
4. Don’t get caught up on flashy objects, customer experience is key.
Whiles there is an amazing amount of interesting new martech, don’t forget about the basics. A great experience is still one of the most important areas marketing can influence.
5. Five common factors why leadership fails in marketing. As we all know, marketing is a group effort that sees more success if it integrated with the organization rather than trying to perform in a silo. However, those at the “top” have a large impact on how the marketing department is perceived across the company and can make or break the overall culture and effectiveness of the team.
6. Product Management and Portfolio Marketing. An effective Product Management and Portfolio Marketing Strategy starts with customer and their needs; helping customers drive growth and increasing innovation opportunities for companies.
7. Portfolio Marketing Range of Responsibilities. While organizations tend to focus on Go-To-Market (GTM) strategies, to be successful, they need to take into account all aspects of the marketing lifecycle from GTM strategy, personas and buyer insights, portfolio messaging and content, bringing offerings to market, sales knowledge transfer and functional design and development.
8. The best customers are those that businesses can retain for the long-term. To help achieve these “lifetime” customers we look to the digital infrastructure including data science and analytics to more effectively and proactively engage with customers around the globe. In order to begin down this digital journey path companies should:
- Plan – both the definition and orchestration of the digital framework
- Enable and scale diverse and cross-functional teams
- Apply customer journey and data analytics to help refine the process
- Use the right platform to enable automation and scalability to reach the right customers at the right time
- Use personalized content that maps to the customer digital journey
9. Demand generation and nurturing programs should focus on an interactive, adaptive and personalized buying experience. This includes listening to your individual and group customers, aligning your nurture programs to the demand objectives and not using linear programs to “control” the buyers.
10. Map out your demand generation blueprint and then decide on the optimal marketing technology to adopt.
The SiriusDecisions Summit brings new ideas to the marketing community each year as it is a conference by marketers for marketers. B2B marketing is constantly evolving and finding the right strategies to reach your customers is the ultimate goal. This is not easy or straightforward path; in fact to paraphrase the Grateful Dead, “what a long strange trip it’s been” and will continue to be.