8 B2B Marketing Trends to Watch in 2024 and Beyond
Is your business keeping up with the times or falling behind?
If you’re not keeping up with B2B marketing trends for this year and beyond, you may just find yourself left in the dust.
You might say, “Chasing trends is a waste of time. I know what works — I’ll stick with what I know.”
B2B Marketing Trends to Watch
While it’s true that not every trend is worth chasing, some start out as passing fads but become ingrained in everyday marketing processes and practices. Imagine your business hadn’t jumped online and was still pursuing solely print ads and billboards.Some of the trends we’ll cover in this post may end up being just as revolutionary as the past (and now permanent) trends of social media, email, or pay-per-click advertising.
The Importance of Following B2B Marketing Trends
We’re going to get into the nitty-gritty with some details on the top trends you should be following, but let’s start with the basics: why should you worry about following B2B marketing trends?
First, following trends is important if you want to stay competitive. The world of B2B is fast-paced and ever-evolving. If you aren’t keeping up with the latest trends, you’re falling behind and losing ground to your competitors. When you follow the trends, you can better differentiate yourself from the competition and position yourself as a leader and a trendsetter in your industry.
Another reason you need to stay on top of these trends is that customer needs and expectations are constantly evolving. You need to understand the changes your customers are experiencing in their industries to adapt your messaging to their current desires.
What happens if you ignore B2B inbound marketing trends? Simple: you miss out on valuable opportunities to connect with your target audience. If you’re not following the trends, you may also end up appearing “behind the times,” which can have a negative impact on your brand’s image and make it more challenging to attract — and keep — customers.
1. Video Content Creation
Modern content creation is moving more and more toward video. With applications like YouTube, Tiktok, and more, creating and sharing video content for your brand has never been easier.
Video content is dynamic and engaging, helping your audience connect more firmly with your brand, message, and brand story. You can also showcase products and services, providing your audience with an immersive and interactive experience.
One tip for video content creation is to engage your audience with real examples. Show them the nuts and bolts of how your brand works to solve their most pressing problems every day. You can provide them with actionable tips and insights, giving value to your audience and building your brand’s authority.
Pro Tip: Only create content around topics where you have proven results — if you can’t point to your own wins, you might not be ready to create videos on that subject just yet. Focus on your strengths first!
2. Business Podcasts
Podcasts are an incredibly powerful tool to build relationships with your audience. Listeners invite podcast hosts into their lives in a way they rarely do with other forms of media. People listen to podcasts in the car, at the gym, or while they’re cooking dinner. Listeners engrain podcasts into their daily lives.
Related Read: The 20 Best Business Podcasts in 2023
The format of a podcast provides your brand with the opportunity to share long-form content. Where YouTube videos tend to be five minutes long or less, the average podcast is twenty minutes or more on average.
Podcasts provide an opportunity to position yourself and your brand as a thought leader in your industry while providing value to your customers. You can use calls to action in your podcast episodes to promote products and services, build brand awareness, and drive traffic to your website.
Pro Tip: Identify areas of interest for your target audience. What do they care about most? Create episodes around these topics first. Then, ensure you create a content calendar so your show can post on a regular schedule and build a consistent audience.
3. B2B Influencer Marketing
Another trend you can follow is the trend of partnering with influencers in your space to increase your reach. By working with influencers, B2B brands can tap into their loyal audience, increasing awareness of their brand and driving traffic to their website.
Remember that B2B influencer marketing and B2C influencer marketing are not one in the same. In the B2B market, you should focus more on establishing credibility through industry professionals than spreading awareness and reaching a mass audience.
Identify influencers in your industry that align with your brand values and target your desired audience. Then, begin building a relationship with them to set the stage for collaboration on content that can promote your brand and their platform.
Pro Tip: Instead of reaching directly out to influencers to ask them to partner with you, start by engaging with their content regularly. Share posts with your audience and judge the reaction. If the posts you share don’t get much traction from your audience, they might not be the right influencer to work with.
4. LinkedIn Marketing and Engagement
If you’re going to try your hand at social media marketing as a B2B brand, you should be looking at LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the number one social network for B2B lead generation, making it the best platform for your brand to use to connect with your audience.
Don’t use LinkedIn to spam your audience with unwanted messages and offers. Provide valuable LinkedIn content in the form of posts and comments. Use content to build relationships and establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry.
You should make an effort to optimize your brand’s LinkedIn profile. Ensure the profile is human and helpful for maximum impact.
Pro Tip: If you create valuable content that encourages engagement, you can leverage the comments on these posts for user-generated content.
5. Ungating Content Offers
This next trend is a bit of a controversial one. There is a trend toward ungating offers in B2B. What does ungating an offer mean? Essentially, it entails offering resources like ebooks or webinars without asking for contact information like an email address.
There are pros and cons to this approach. The downside is that you will no longer generate new leads directly through any of the offers you ungate. However, when you provide ungated content, you provide site visitors with more upfront value. This approach can give them a more positive view of your brand and increase the likelihood that they will engage with your brand further or even share your content.
Related Read: 5 Examples of SaaS Marketing Strategies that Killed It
To leverage this trend, B2B marketers can start by testing the impact of ungated content on their website traffic, engagement rates, and lead generation efforts. Don’t be afraid to adjust your strategy accordingly once you’ve seen results — ungating content might not be the right play for every business or every offer.
Got a pro tip here?
6. AI-Powered Marketing
If you haven’t heard about AI tools like ChatGPT by now, you must be living under a rock somewhere. Using AI tools to assist in marketing efforts is one of the fastest-growing trends in B2B marketing.
One of the plusses of using AI tools to power your marketing efforts is that it can help you increase efficiency. Instead of wasting time digging for information online, your marketers can leverage insights from the web quickly and easily. You may also want to experiment with using AI to create things like blog outlines, email templates, and more.
One word of caution regarding AI and marketing: don’t become too reliant on these tools.
For example, you may not want to have ChatGPT spit out content and then put it directly onto your website. Google machine learning is constantly improving and will likely continuously improve at prioritizing websites that publish human, helpful content over AI-generated, generic content.
Pro Tip: Work with subject matter experts on topics relevant to your industry to produce content with human context and examples that AI is incapable of generating.
7. Automation Galore
Automation is becoming increasingly popular in B2B marketing — and for good reason. If you’re looking to free up your team to accomplish more important tasks while also improving your accuracy, automation could just be the solution you’re looking for.
Automating tasks lets you can focus on more strategic initiatives, such as creating high-quality content and building relationships with your audience. To leverage this trend, start by identifying repetitive and time-consuming tasks.
You then will need to select the right tool to help you automate those tasks. Consider workflow tools, chatbots, and email marketing automation tools. Choose a tool that aligns with your business goals and integrates with your existing marketing tools.
Pro Tip: Set up regular processes to monitor your automation efforts to ensure they are working as intended and producing the desired results for your business.
8. Purpose-Driven Branding
Purpose-driven branding is the last trend you’ll want to keep an eye on this year.
What is purpose-driven branding? Simple: position your brand to make it clear you care about society, your community, or a specific cause rather than simply caring about selling your product or service.
Aligning your brand with a purpose that resonates with your audience can go a long way toward building trust and nurturing relationships with your target customers. You can leverage this trend by identifying a purpose that aligns with your brand values. Then, incorporate that purpose into your messaging, site copy, and social media presence.
Pro Tip: Consider partnering with organizations that support your purpose to show your commitment and increase your impact and reach.
Stay Ahead of B2B Marketing Trends
These seven trends are a great place to start moving forward with your next marketing campaign. However, even once you master these trends, your journey isn’t over — after all, there will be a whole crop of new trends next year and the year after that.
How can you stay ahead of B2B marketing trends and keep your efforts modern and impactful? Simple: take a holistic approach to your marketing.
When you look at the big picture every time you craft your marketing campaigns, you make it easier to avoid random acts of marketing and create targeted campaigns designed to attract and delight your target customers.
Check out our free resource, the Growth Playbook, to get tips on how to 10X your growth and maximize the ROI of your marketing efforts.
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