The world of marketing is in a state of continuous churn. Changes in customer behavior bring forth new paradigms by the day, rendering previous ones obsolete. It is not enough that a marketer simply adapts to change. They have to embrace change as a routine, and more often than not, implement change in real-time. The net effect is chaos, which breeds anxiety and uncertainty.
In a May 2013 study by Forrester Research and the Business Marketing Association, 97% of B2B marketers confess they do not have the necessary skills to take on such new demands. In such a state of affairs, it is no surprise that most online marketing efforts are not meeting the needs of the sales team. About two out of every three marketers confess their current marketing programs do not address buyers’ needs in an effective manner.
Marketers may need to adopt the following to mitigate such a grim scenario:
- Invest in a state of the art CRM that leverages the power of big data. The most effective CRMs are those that collect the latest and most relevant data from various sources, and subjects it to analysis on a real-time basis, to offer an integrated view of the customer, as well as actionable insights.
- Break down organizational silos to facilitate integration between sales and marketing, and to ensure that information flows freely to the analytical engine.
- Invest heavily in social media. Social media has evolved considerably from its days as another messaging channel. It is now a major conduit for lead acquisition and customer support. A study by J.D. Power and Associates reveals that twice as many U.S. consumers interact with brands through social media for service related matters as opposed to marketing.
How you are adapting your business in this fast market? How are you encouraging collaboration between your sales and marketing teams?