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AI and social media marketers in B2B marketing campaign

30-second summary:

  • The alignment between advanced technologies and B2B marketing has evolved. Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential and capabilities to push B2B marketing to new heights.
  • In past AI was just a thing of sci-fi movies and scientific laboratories. Today it has been used abundantly by a number of industries and marketing is no exception. Digital B2C marketers are already leveraging the power of AI for digitizing their social media campaigns and making them more engaging and appealing.
  • In the B2B context, marketers can also use AI and transform the buyer journey. AI not only helps in identifying the right clients, but it can also be used to satisfy the needs of those customers.
  • Finally, AI is the best thing for B2B social media marketers because it automates processes and let them save time that can be utilized in core activities.

Without a doubt, artificial intelligence has touched every aspect of human lives. It is no more a thing related to sci-fi movies or big laboratories only. Curious about how artificial intelligence (AI) can help social media marketers in designing an effective B2B marketing campaign? Well, no need to be anymore.

With people already shifting to online shopping, social media marketers are trying their best to leverage AI for designing appealing B2B marketing campaigns.

Did you know that it was predicted that by 2020, more than 30% of all the B2B would be using AI for improving sales processes? Moreover, 63% of B2B companies are encouraged to use artificial intelligence because it can reduce operational cost, while 54% of marketing executives say that AI solutions have increased their productivity (Zoominfo).

Nine ways AI and social media demonstrate immense value for B2B marketing strategy

Below-mentioned are eight ways social media marketers can leverage AI and will completely transform B2B marketing campaigns:

1) Understanding the value of AI for B2B marketing

To proceed further, it is very important to know what value artificial intelligence and social media marketers can bring for a B2B Marketing Campaign.

The first and foremost benefit of using AI as part of the B2B campaign is that it enables social media marketers to get quality leads. In fact, it is the biggest challenge that B2B marketers face.

A study involving a survey of B2B marketers suggest that the biggest expectation of marketers for AI is to assist them in determining the profitable prospects and enhance the effectiveness of a marketing strategy that drives revenues.

Prior to AI, lead generation was a tough job for marketers. But with, audience segmentation is quick and quite straightforward. Plus, when a B2B company is able to identify its target audience accurately, the chances of success get improved.

It is also suspected whether AI will replace social media marketers.


2) Personalized messages for B2B marketing campaign

Personalization is the key in both B2C and B2B worlds.

According to a study, 71% of B2B marketers say that they are interested in adopting AI technologies because of personalization.

AI allows social media marketers to develop a personalized B2B campaign which is a major factor in lea conversion. From personalization, I mean that the content of the campaign must resonate with the audience.

AI is enabling social media marketers to use the information of B2B clients and use it for customized interactions. Artificial intelligence provides brands with the capability to understand customer behavior and anticipate their needs.

These messages generated by the AI tech will include emails, text messages, ads, and pop-up messages that appear on landing pages.

3) Automated conversations

One of the most amazing uses of AI in the business world is that it offers them the ability to operate round the clock with chatbots. With an AI-powered social media communication system, you can achieve the following:

  • Answering customer queries quickly
  • Understand customer needs
  • Offer customer suggestions
  • Sent scheduled messages
  • Promote new products and services
  • Conduct surveys without being boring

AI Automation

Automated conversations should be a part of any B2B marketing campaign because they boost brand responsiveness towards customers. When buyers get the information, they’re looking for, they proceed to the buying stage quickly.

4) CRM for B2B Marketing Campaign

In the B2B context, customer relationship management (CRM) becomes extremely important.

AI-powered intelligent CRM systems analyze client behavior and a large amount of data that can benefit your B2B marketing campaign. They use predictive analysis to recognize behavioral patterns and trends. This data can be used by social media marketers to identify quality lead – which is indeed the most painful task.

Not only this, but AI-powered CRM uses natural language processing (NLP) to transcribe phone calls between sales agents and business clients. This would help businesses rank the value and the level of risk involved in leading a particular lead.

5) Content creation & optimization

Are you posting content regularly on your social accounts and web pages but not getting desired traffic and leads? Lack of optimized content could be the reason.

In the past, social media marketers only launch a single B2B marketing campaign. Today, they launch more campaigns. With AI, social media marketers are empowered as it allows them to create sensible and valuable content those users are interested in reading.

It also simplified SEO. For instance, identifying relevant keywords based on user intent and creating quality backlinks is no more a problem with AI. Time consuming tedious SEO tasks will be done easily and quickly with AI.

6) Influencer marketing

Who are influencers?

They are key individuals with high expertise in their niche and a huge fan following. Through them, you can build awareness about your brand and reach out to a massive audience. You can also co-create content with them and create a buzz around your product.

You can use influencers for your B2B marketing campaign and increase its success rate. Last year, almost 50% of B2B organizations used influencer marketing for promoting their brand.

AI can help you identify right influencers, the ones that match perfectly with your brand personality and goals.

7) Simplified data analysis

The success of your B2B marketing campaign depends on how well you gather and evaluate data.

Not being able to obtain and interpret data accurately might hamper your B2B campaign, and you can lose profitable leads.

As we all know that humans can make mistakes, but AI can simplify the complexities of media planning. With AI, you can solve complex problems speedily and retrieve history within no time. For example, AI-powered social media platforms can let social media marketers know which clients have higher income and even which luxury brands they own.

8) Tracking B2B marketing campaign efforts

As a social marketer, you might be interested in knowing how your B2B campaign is performing and if it needs any changes. Experts suggest that B2B social media marketers should always compare their current performance with past results to gauge true results.

According to essay writers UK, AI-powered platforms have enabled businesses to track prospects every step of the way. With AI, you don’t need to wait for a week to get a post mortem report of your B2B campaign.

This also enabled social media marketers to make immediate changes in your B2B campaign if required. Similar strategy is used for mobile application development for your B2B prospects.

9) Optimizing email send times

No matter how much noteworthy piece of content with valuable information you create, it would be worthless if your customers don’t find it when they open their email.

With AI, social media marketers are empowered. They can optimize email delivery times. AI calculates the best time to send emails to your audience.

According to a study, morning is the best time to send B2B emails. Emails that are sent between 12:00 am to 8:15 am receive a high open-rate.

In summary

AI has completely changed the way social media marketers design and launch a B2B marketing campaign. Things are pretty easier and quicker.

With AI revolutionizing how data is gathered, processes, and created, social media marketers get more time to spend on other meaningful activities.

The post AI and social media marketers in B2B marketing campaign appeared first on ClickZ.

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Sales lift from AOOH averaged nearly 19% across four CPG categories

30-second summary:

  • Audio out-of-home (AOOH) advertising is a medium that allows CPG brands to impact a customer’s shopping experience while physically in the store.
  • Vibenomics, a tech-driven AOOH advertising company partnered with IRI®, a data analytics and marketing company with sku-level access to point-of-sale data, to measure the direct sales impact of exposure to AOOH advertising.
  • After looking at the level of spend across several stores in a short period of time, the results showed an average 18.8% sales lift from four CPG categories including hair shampoo/conditioner, skin care, dry packaged dinner mixes, and adult beverage.
  • The most significant lift in sales seen in the adult beverage category at 34.1%.

Audio out-of-home (AOOH) advertising is a medium that allows CPG brands to impact a customer’s shopping experience while physically in the store, but it can be difficult to have a clear understanding of ROI.

To address this, Vibenomics, a tech-driven AOOH advertising company partnered with IRI® to measure the direct sales impact of exposure to AOOH advertising. IRI is a data analytics and marketing company that works with CPG and retail clients to provide business intelligence on purchasing trends.

IRI’s exclusive SKU-level access to point-of-sale data enabled Vibenomics to perform four blind studies that showed promising results in several categories:  hair shampoo/conditioner, skin care, dry packaged dinner mixes, and adult beverage.

We spoke with Paul Brenner, CSO at Vibenomics, to learn more about how AOOH works for advertisers and unpack the results of the four blind studies that they conducted in partnership with IRI.

Immersive, out-of-home audio advertising for CPG brands

Headquartered in Indiana, Vibenomics is an AOOH provider that reaches 200 million unique shoppers nationwide via their network of convenience and grocery retail outlets.

Brenner joined the company in 2019 as the Chief Strategy Officer (CSO), bringing 25 years of experience in the media entertainment and advertising industries.

“Vibenomics is an audio advertising company that also provides amazing premium content,” explains Brenner. “Our enterprise customers, like Kroger, want to provide a great in-store experience that engages their shoppers that gets positive feedback from customers, while leveraging shopper engagement to create advertising revenue and grow an even deeper relationship with the retailer.”

Vibenomics’ advertising clients include agencies, holding companies, and brand managers who want to reach consumers at the point of purchase. Their ad marketplace inserts dynamic, in-stream, programmatic digital audio ads into music that’s broadcast within their network of convenience and retail stores.

Says Brenner, “We’re an audio advertising company that, first and foremost, engages with the retailer to create audio that’s specific to their brand and shopper demographic. We spend a lot of time creating a great audio experience, so that we can offer the advertiser a range of services that show them how to take advantage of that engaged shopper.”

A positive sales lift across four CPG categories

Vibenomics’ tech-driven approach helps the advertiser understand why their investment is better served in a place where there’s limited waste and that reaches shoppers at the point of purchase. Their partnership with IRI helped clarify the positive impact the AOOH model has on incremental sales lift and return on ad spend.

After looking at the level of spend across several stores in a short period of time, the results showed an average 18.8% sales lift from the four categories noted above, with the most significant lift in sales seen in the adult beverage category at 34.1%.

A 5-week test comprised of 200 locations (100 test locations vs. 100 control locations) garnered 3.3 million ad impressions at a cost of just under $37,000 and contributed to a 34% lift on the sales of a new adult beverage offering.

IRI’s case studies showed a sales lift even for established categories over a short period of time (e.g., skincare products). A 6-week study across 63 testing locations vs. 63 control locations revealed a 9.35% sales lift for a skincare cleansing product which had considerable market maturity.

“A 9.4% sales lift is impressive because, although the brand had market maturity, we were able to push it a little bit further,” explains Brenner.

Tech-driven, curated content in the retail environment

Vibenomics works with brands to create targeted campaigns using SKU level data obtained through their partnership with IRI. The advertiser provides UPC and distribution requirements to Vibenomics’ team which then analyzes the data and helps the brand create a targeted campaign.

Says Brenner, “Our creative studio works with the advertiser to write the script, produce audio around the context of the product they’re promoting, its seasonality, and its brand persona. We build the copy and get approval, then run the campaign in stores where the product can be acquired.”

Vibenomics works with IRI to run controlled studies of their AOOH campaigns using a multi-staged process that ensures advertisers get the best ROI from their targeted campaigns. Ideally, the test phase runs for five-to-eight weeks and is approached cyclically across the buy cycles of certain brands. Most advertisers end up committing to longer-term campaigns once they obtain the results of the test.

The Vibenomics/IRI tests were all performed at Kroger properties, with Kroger being the number one pure grocer at about 2600 locations. Looking ahead, Vibenomics plans an aggressive expansion to more grocery chains across the top 25 DMAs in 2021.

Planning for 2021 and beyond

Grocery and convenience stores were essential businesses in 2020 and will remain essential throughout 2021. Brenner notes that while unique monthly visits to stores dropped slightly, dwell time (e.g. time spent in the store) increased by as much as ten times.

“There are studies that show basket sizes actually increased,” says Brenner. “People may have taken fewer shopping trips, but they spent more time in the store and bought more products.”

Brenner notes that the “COVID effect” has put an end to the annual media spend and this is relatively consistent across all media. “Quarter by quarter planning is much more common and sometimes month by month as well, even by organizations with the biggest budgets.”

Since Vibenomics is completely digital, they can be agile regarding timing and location of campaigns, a much-needed capability in the post-COVID era.

“We’re extremely flexible with location and timing,” says Brenner. “We can turn content around in hours and place ads programmatically in real time.”

The post Sales lift from AOOH averaged nearly 19% across four CPG categories appeared first on ClickZ.

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Omnichannel marketing is a competitive advantage for B2B marketers this year

30-second summary:

  • In a very tough year, B2B marketers had to quickly pivot when some of their best lead generation and sales channels (meetings and events) were put on hold.
  • At the same time, cool new channels like CTV often feel out of reach to B2B marketers.
  • B2B marketers must innovated, and not wait around for the “old days.” In 2021, in-person activity will slowly come back, but now B2B buyers are used to, and often prefer, online channels.
  • B2B marketers need to  lean into an omnichannel approach, which is not just for B2C marketers.
  • By focusing on updated data that unites channels, B2B marketers can test and win with CTV and other new concepts as long as they create a cohesive experience for prospects.

As B2B marketers brush off the debris from 2020 and assess what to expect in 2021, many will be thinking about the things they can return to that have been on hiatus for the past 10 months, namely sales meetings and events.

These two important elements of marketing will definitely come back, but any marketer that keeps trudging forward with the same old mix of online marketing in the meantime will be left behind as other B2B marketers gain traction with new and old channels colliding like Salesforce and Hubspot with CTV and Digital OOH.

This year, a lot of mid-funnel prospects that went dark will come back to life. It’s a huge opportunity to get the pipeline going and get deals closed. But, at least the first half of this year, if not the whole year, will still be affected by less travel and less in-person events than we’d all want.

Rather than think of that as a reason for pessimism, take this time to think about how new channels can be used to capture as many of those prospects as possible. The real opportunity to close sales in 2021 isn’t a return to normal, but rather a growth in omnichannel performance.

Redefining omnichannel for B2B

In 2020, B2B marketers doubled down on their favorite lead generation channels, namely email, search, and content marketing. These measurable workhorses are by no means supposed to be replaced in an omnichannel strategy. Rather, an omnichannel approach effectively brings these channels together and makes room for coordinated marketing on new channels.

I know what you might be thinking right now, omnichannel marketing that includes CTV or Digital OOH is particularly hard for B2B marketers, who are faced with smaller audiences, and longer, more complicated sales processes.

But think about this; without the benefit of in-person events and meetings, how better to keep someone engaged than showing a CTV commercial to your target audience while they’re streaming something at home? That’s a super-engaging opportunity that’s worth the added work.

Focusing on omnichannel marketing doesn’t have to mean B2B marketers need to spend money on “every channel.” Rather, it means two things:

  • Unified data: Using coordinated data, insights and messaging across a strategic group of channels that create a full-funnel marketing experience.
  • Testing new channels and channel combinations: Testing new channels and channel combinations like CTV plus email and direct mail using B2B friendly strategies.

Creating a data foundation

I love the concept of “data portability” to explain how data feeds into an omnichannel marketing strategy. It’s important to think about uniting important insights about target audiences and prospects into a single whole, but also to be able to use those insights across a variety of channels, tech platforms and reports.

These are some of the most important steps to creating a high-functioning data strategy:

  • Create a clean database: Do a New Year’s CRM hygiene sweep. Don’t forget simple things like having addresses and zip codes on all files. Domain is great but the more data you have on an account the higher match on every channel. For example for every accountlink ID,  it corresponds to a specific company name and zip code that reaches the right buying decision-making group, creating less waste of media and frustration on everyone’s end.
  • Unify IDs across the tech stack: Pick an ID or a partner that can help bridge the gap from Marketo to LinkedIn and other key marketing technologies and platforms in the plan.
  • Get teams to communicate internally: Align demand gen, email marketing, events, and sales with the same goal and be sure these goals can be tracked in platforms like Hubspot. For demand gen, don’t just shove leads into Marketo, get more out of the Martech stack by creating an audience that can be used for many channels, with common goals..

To make the most of cross-channel execution, this newly clean and portable data needs to be the backbone of a highly orchestrated measurement and analysis strategy. It’s important to have full-funnel attribution and ROAS tracking in order to attribute interested leads from new channels like digital TV viewing to sales, form downloads and engagement.

It’s also important to build in the ability to target specific audiences by important details like job title; device (CTV, Apple TV, mobile, tablet and desktop); streaming platform (Hulu, DirecTV Now, Sling, etc.); geolocation; time of day; and demographic, including gender or even income.

You always start with activating first-party at an account level to create one audience, and then you look at the intent insights those companies have shown and build other audiences from new accounts that display similar intent and then you cut all or some of those accounts by job title to get to the decision maker level.

All of this is meant to create a mix of audiences that allow you to test and optimize.

The right B2B approach to new channel testing

Nearly two thirds (73%) of top performing B2B marketers nurture leads compared to only 38% of the least successful. People still love email, but their inboxes are full. Everyone values new research content, but they also like variety.

Nurturing leads successfully requires some creative messaging across different channels.  The element of newness, surprise and a change of environment can go a long way to delivering value in an omnichannel lead nurturing strategy.

One way to approach this is to take a tried and true channel like Hubspot, and figure out how to connect it to a new one, like CTV. If there are already accounts in Hubspot, test a media campaign to re-activate mid-tier prospects.

Especially in today’s world hubspot has created great new features like in email videos’ that allow sales people to share demos, use cases, or  newly added features quickly in an personalized email to a client. That type of engagement tied to an ad a client might have just seen on the TV that is on the background probably scrolling bad news on TV.

These are the tactics that push a lead to close a B2B deal.

When adding any new channel like CTV to a B2B stack, it’s important to remember that it is just a piece of the cross-channel puzzle. B2B marketers should always assess their audience, demographics and KPIs to determine which channel and strategy is best for reaching their intended audiences.

Even before we can do those in-person events again, mixing in the human element and adapting outreach to attain and engage users is ideal for optimal success.

Benjamin Goldman is Senior Vice President, Digital at 180byTwo, a MeritDirect Company. 180byTWO employs data-driven decisioning to create meaningful opportunities for their clients, partners and their customer. They leverage cutting edge technology, analytics, and data insights to drive our approach to data solutions and services.

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