Leveraging technology to spur your b2b marketing model
After sharing the basics of what the B2B marketing model is all about, a number of our readers have been engaging us further on its application and how best it can work in today’s business environment. Though in different ways, there is one thing that dominated the discussion and that is “Technology”. Most of our readers needed to better understand how best they can use technology to realise the best of their efforts in the B2B marketing game. This puzzle compelled me to write this subsequent article.
As I put my thoughts together, this joke that I have encountered a couple of times came to my mind; “My brother doesn’t have to give parental advice to his kid any more. His kid’s phone has an app for that.” There are just countless ways in which technology can support B2B Marketing and different businesses may have to switch from one user to another depending on the different particular needs that they face. Here below are some ways in which you can up your B2B Marketing game using technology.
1. Customer Profiling
This is very critical and helps in the market segmentation, targeting and positioning of your business to market more efficiently. With the basic tools such as MS Excel to more complex ones, technology can and will help in development of user friendly customer databases which can be used to reach out to customers with similar needs or buying patterns as may be deemed necessary. With such databases, other marketing activities such as sending out mass messages, making inquiries, conducting interview, scheduling visits and many others are made easy.
2. Product development and improvement
Today, technology is playing a key role in research for new products, development of prototypes and even testing improvements on existing products. We are increasingly seeing Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) supporting such initiatives with a significant drop in both time and money hence having a marked improvement on company bottom line
3. Customer service
In this technology driven era, we have witnessed a dramatic use of technology in the space of customer service. Self-service solutions like the Automatized Teller Machines (ATMs), or even the communication modes such as transaction confirmation messages by SMS have largely been impacted on by technology.
4 Promotion [social media, e-mail marketing]
A means of communicating to an intended audience have been revolutionalised by technology. In the name of Digital Marketing, promoting B2B has enjoyed immense utilisation. Ranging from Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, to e-mail marketing and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) among others have been clear winners in this digital age. With the growing of Artificial Intelligence (AI), digital marketing is becoming more effective as it gets easier to reach the targeted audience.
5.Price computation / modeling
One of the most forgotten aspects of marketing is pricing. It is also clear that this aspect of marketing can leverage technology by the application of modeling application to generate different scenario with lots of time being saved. This is particularly important where price discrimination can yield higher profitability and customer satisfaction.
Be-it a tangible product or an intangible service, processes are another critical element in marketing that leads to higher customer satisfaction. In this regard, technology is highly instrumental in reducing processing time and cost while improving output quality and quantity. Think of how long it takes you to respond to a quotation or confirmation of payments from your clients into your bank account. Ensuring quick and seamless processes will enhance the customer experience and thus positively impacting on your business’ bottom-line.
7. Measuring performance of campaigns
What cannot be measured cannot be achieved is an adage often used for the justification of measuring performance. Technology has made Marketing analytics a reality and thus easy to ascertain the impact of specific marketing initiatives.
In conclusion, it must be acknowledged that adjustment with the times is mandatory. Leveraging technology has its very essential benefits as explained above and with it comes a substantial cost in the immediate short term. Getting over the cost hurdle is widely recommended as optimization methods for growing any organisation or business is now going to have technology somewhere between its core and its heart.
By Brian Ahabwe Kakuru
Brian is the Managing Director at BLEGSCOPE®, and has 10+ years of management consultancy experience notably in the finance & banking industry, MSMEs, FMCG companies and in the service industry. You can follow him on twitter >> @BrianAhabweK