3 B2B Budget Tips to Boost Your Bottom Line in a Digital Landscape In today’s digital age, the world of B2B is experiencing a significant shift, transforming how businesses operate and grow. The traditional way of conducting business is fundamentally changing, leading to...
This story originally appeared on Due
In today’s digital age, the world of B2B is experiencing a significant shift, transforming how businesses operate and grow. The traditional way of conducting business is fundamentally changing, leading to new industry trends and developments. Companies should consider reviewing their budgets to invest in activities that meet these changing needs.
For example, the processes and techniques used to market and sell products and services to other businesses have fundamentally changed in the last five years. Typically, marketing strategies aim to strike customer interest to let sales close those deals. This was the conventional route to building revenue within an established business. The digital age, however, has upended how customers research and consume solutions, thus forcing a change to this traditional paradigm.
With the advent of digital engagement, this approach has transformed. There has been a significant role reversal in the sales and marketing models used in the B2B world. “The demand for digital customer engagement has led to an imperative to adopt a more customer-centric approach for both marketing and sales,” says Gavin Finn, CEO of Kaon Interactive, an interactive sales and marketing platform for enterprise companies.
Because customers now use digital channels to engage and learn by themselves, they are no longer bound by the restrictions of traditional sales. This shift online has given consumers a proclivity to purchase at a moment’s notice, which can result in higher revenues. It’s now become critical for organizations to adapt their budget to allocate funds to activities that will help them stay competitive in the digital era. Managing how you invest through the tips provided below will make all the difference for a healthy return.
1. Budget for Less In-Person, More Digital Interactions
Traditional sales methods like in-person meetings and trade shows carry a considerable expense, from salaries to booth fees to travel-related costs; the numbers can add up quickly, making ROI nearly impossible in today’s digital landscape. Diverting funds to online channels offers a more cost-effective way to reach a wider audience. Investing in website chat assistants, virtual trade shows, and webinars can be valuable alternatives, to name a few.
Historically, B2B sales heavily relied on long, detailed sales cycles with multiple touchpoints with potential clients. However, the digital age has changed how people research and buy products and services. Buyers now prefer self-service buying, conducting research, and making decisions without any sales interaction.
The rise of e-commerce platforms like Amazon Business is a clear example of how digital technology has influenced the B2B sales process. Companies are now funding the adoption of more customer-centric alternatives by offering online marketplaces, digital content, and self-service portals to facilitate sales.
Placing the purchasing power back in the hands of consumers can be quite lucrative for boosting ROI. According to research conducted by Statista, nearly 20% of all retail commerce was conducted via e-commerce markets like Amazon. That number is only expected to increase as well, with an estimated growth of over $8.1 billion spent through e-commerce by 2026. This proves the value found in overhauling sales from traditional routes to more online-focused digital marketplaces.
2. Invest in Effective Digital Routes to Sales
Historically, a common practice for B2B businesses was to opt for expensive advertising and company-specific marketing efforts such as conference presentations, flyers, or direct mail. In the digital era, buyers are more informed and knowledgeable. They conduct personal online research. Therefore, it’s more critical than ever before for companies to allocate funds to marketing efforts that provide informative, detectable routes to sales, likely with even lower overhead than traditional marketing.
By investing in buyer-centric marketing, companies can address the concerns and needs of potential clients. Videos, case studies, white papers, and webinars are accessible to potential customers, providing them with the knowledge they need to make informed decisions.
Interactive engagement with an omnichannel approach has become critical to tell complex value stories in today’s B2B landscape. “Digital channels are most effective when the customer is engaged in a multisensory manner,” says Finn. “They are driving how the story is revealed, much like how a video game works, rather than a linear video or a slide presentation.”
The highest ROI comes from drawing customers to a landing page from numerous channels. According to a study from Gartner, by the year 2025, an estimated 80% of B2B sales interactions will happen through digital channels. Financing innovative ways to absolve barriers to purchase after one or more points of interest leads to more sales and healthier revenues.
3. Set Aside Funds for Internal Communication & Productivity Tools
As B2B sales and marketing play more consultative and informative roles, their roles become more closely aligned. In the digital era, sales and marketing are no longer independent functions operating in distinct silos. Instead, they must work together to produce content and information that is relevant, informative, and motivating to the customer.
For a profitable B2B sales and marketing approach, allocating funds in the budget to integrate both functions is essential. In a digital landscape, marketing and sales are a click away from one another; therefore, they must work in harmony. There is no better way to do this than by allocating funds toward internal tools that promote visibility, communication, and productivity.
Sales-enablement marketing tools ensure the sales team has the tools, messages, and resources they need to convert leads into sales. Marketing-influenced sales combine marketing and sales practices to generate revenue-driven results. Tools like these, as well as standalone CRM tools, task management systems, and instant messaging platforms, can carry a considerable cost, so setting aside funds in the budget is crucial to finding the right solution.
Factors Involved in the Need to Reallocate Funds
B2B businesses are re-assessing their budgets primarily because of the technological changes of the past few decades. There are a number of peripheral factors to consider surrounding the need to reallocate funds to compete in the digital era. Technology isn’t the only thing at play; the changing attitudes around tech matter just as much.
First, it’s important to address what exactly has changed in the tools we use to conduct business. Growing sophistication in mobile devices or personal computers has granted access to a digital marketplace available 24/7. Consumers are no longer required to work around schedules to squeeze in a meeting with a sales rep to talk about purchases. Even at a corporate level, this shift is tangible — people enjoy the freedom from time commitment.
This change can be quite beneficial for businesses, though. Never before has it been more necessary to have a quality e-commerce landing page for consumers to conduct business at their leisure. This allows the proverbial sales floor to remain constantly open. Additionally, collecting data on sales is much more efficient via online purchasing. And, its organization is quicker and more streamlined than in-person.
The collective shift to a digitally focused platform has strong potential for a high ROI. Beyond the early overhead of making the change from focusing on outdated sales tactics, the digital marketplace works for pennies on the dollar. At the breakneck pace that purchases get made online, giving the consumer power to choose when and where to buy will be sure to boost revenues.
In the last several years, individuals have seen sweeping changes in how people conduct themselves online. On the heels of a pandemic, employers and employees saw a mass adoption of working remotely. Additionally, online communication became commonplace. Most businesses still feel the ramifications of a remote existence, including purchasing power trending virtually. This trend is being spearheaded by younger and digitally literate people who already exist online.
Forbes Business Council Member Marielle Dellemijn explains the digital shift. “A generational shift is taking place. Millennials are taking over decision-making positions, which means an increase of virtual selling practices,” Dellemijn writes. “…Millennials in B2B roles often prefer online buying experiences through a digital-first approach, without contacting sellers.”
Dellemijn goes on to describe the sales data behind this shift. “…more than 44% of millennial B2B buyers prefer closing a deal without interacting with sales professionals. At most, 17% of the total buying process occurs in direct contact with sales…” Gartner conducted this research, The Future of Sales: Transformational Strategies for B2B Sales Organizations and 5 Ways the Future of B2B Buying Will Rewrite the Rules of Effective Selling.
Changes in the Digital Era Require Budgetary Changes
The B2B sales and marketing roles are changing. This indicates that businesses must adapt their financial plans to the digital era to remain competitive. Prioritizing funds to implement new technology and techniques that enable better engagement with buyers and provide value is essential to developing healthy ROI.
The digital era is transforming how B2B companies sell and market their products. Corporate leaders must embrace the trend and prioritize expenses that put the customer first. By doing so, businesses can build trust, strengthen relationships, and ultimately drive revenue growth.
- Plan for the changing landscape of the digital era of sales and marketing. As tech moves people online, funding digital experiences is essential for closing a sale.
- Marketing communications methods are changing along with the digital landscape. Investing in quality digital marketing activities that lead to sales is now more critical than ever.
- Sales and marketing are working closer together now than ever before. Placing a budgetary emphasis on the importance of internal communications and connectivity between both functions to develop an approach for ROI is now more necessary.
The post 3 B2B Budget Tips to Boost Your Bottom Line in a Digital Landscape appeared first on Due.