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Majority of Marketers Say They Don’t Have the Digital Tools They Need to Succeed

Top PrioritiesThe newly released 2014 Digital Trends report from Econsultancy and Adobe shows that both B2B and B2C marketers are making big changes in the way they reach out to their customers. Unfortunetly, only 23% of marketers believe they have the tools they need to succeed.

Marketers said they were concerned about social media curation tools that block business messages. Others worry that we’ve given customers too many ways to buy exactly what they want so competition keeps growing as customer loyalty fades. But the biggest is the speed at which digital marketing keeps changing.

Said one respondent,

“The creative use of technology coming through the generations [is a key trend]. The 40-year-old marketing director doesn’t have the understanding and natural intuitiveness of the digital natives and so can’t imagine what is coming next. The hyper-connected generation and all its baggage is fast on the horizon.”

5 Lessons from LinkedIn’s Top Company Pages

Linkedin Best OfAs we approach the end of the year, we always see lists of top this and best that for 2013. Today’s list comes from LinkedIn. It’s the “top” – meaning most inspiring and engaging company pages as voted on by LinkedIn members.

The 10 companies comes from a range of industries; 4 are tech related but still represent different aspects of the industry.  The biggest surprise is that only a few are strictly business to business companies. Let’s take a closer look at a few of them and see what we can learn from each of them.

Adobe gets high praise for proper segmentation. Rather than cram everything into their company home page, they created individual pages for their Marketing Cloud product and their Creative Cloud product. This way, they can customize the message to suit the needs of two different customers.

B2B Readers Want Their Print and Digital, Too!

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While consumers are slowing giving up their magazine subscriptions in favor of the web, people are still turning to print magazines for their business needs.

According to a survey by ABM, 96% of media users still read trade magazines to keep up on what’s happening in their industry. 45% said they read a print magazine at least weekly. Of course, the numbers for web users were even higher but 74% said they go back and forth between traditional print and digital media.

Above all, B2B readers are looking for practical information they can use to run their business and make buying decisions. In addition to print and the web, 93% said they read information provided by product manufacturers, 92% rely on e-newsletters and 80% turn to conferences and trade shows to help keep them up-to-date.

B2B CMO’s Future Reliant on Doing Things They Have Never Done Before

Change is a constant in the world of business. Whether you are a finance specialist who has to watch the changing tide of the law or a technology leader who has to try to stay ahead of the ‘latest and greatest’ most business people certainly have their work cut out for them.

One area that our readers can certainly relate to is the rapidly changing landscape of marketing. One could argue that the change has been the most intense for this discipline because it has been completely redefined. Rather than keeping pace with what’s new, marketers, especially at the C-level have had to adjust to the reinvention of the position. Many who sit at the top of the marketing food chain have climbed a burning rope to the top. All that means is that what it took to get to the top no longer applies. This is especially true in the B2B space.

A new study by Forrester makes this point

B2B Marketing's Role Changing

Nearly everyone polled agreed (or strongly agreed) that doing something it has never done before is going to be critical for success in the future. This should be a true wake-up call for the B2B CMO.

Other findings make this shift feel more like doom and gloom than change and adventure. Why? Because even with the need to do something differently CMO’s must

B2B Marketers Still Concentrating on Web Basics

Ever notice how quick the online marketing industry is to race to the next ‘big’ thing without ever quite completing the mastery of the previous next big thing?

It’s probably the least endearing quality of the industry since it ends up leaving a lot of disillusioned folks in its wake but that’s the price of progress, I suppose.

One group that has always been viewed as lagging behind is the B2B marketer. Based on findings from a BtoB Magazine study as reported by eMarketerthis group is focusing their sites most in 2013 on the most basic of elements; their websites.

Digital Marketing Techniques B2B

Brand Building and the Impact of Social Media

When asked about brand building strategies, marketers in a recent Forrester survey said that search and social media were neck-and-neck. Search won by a nose thanks to business to business marketers who rated social media lower than business to consumer marketers. But overall, it’s clear that social media is having a big impact.

Digging a little deeper we see that online video is hot with the B2B crowd (who knew) while mobile is the weapon of choice for B2C.

Social media is changing the way we sell everything from accordions to wildebeests, but marketing man can not live by Facebook alone.

B2B Marketers’ Social Media Efforts Have Much Room to Mature

Let’s just start by saying that the B2C approach vs. the B2B approach to social media marketing is often at opposite ends of the spectrum. Not always but often. Honestly, it should be. Asking you friends about an electronics purchase or the best place to find shoes is an inherently different mindset that finding the right multi-million dollar software and hardware combination for a business. In other words, there aren’t a lot of OMG’s in the B2B social media space (Thank God!).

Recent findings back this idea. eMarketer shows some research conducted in November of 2011 by Pardot that indicates where B2B marketers are spending their social media time.