The Rise of Virtual Reality and What It Means for B2B Marketers

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It wasn’t long ago that virtual reality felt like pure fiction. Members of Star Trek’s USS Enterprise used virtual reality to explore simulated environments — anything from traveling to lush forests to solving complicated mysteries. Bringing this technology to reality, however, felt “highly illogical,” as Spock would say. But today, not only has VR arrived, but experts say it’s the next big thing for marketing. VR provides viewers with complete immersion into a 360-degree experience, often using headsets that isolate them from the outside environment. For marketers, this is the holy grail. Viewers are completely engrossed, engaged and attentive to your messaging – and isolated in your world, by choice. In fact, Gartner predicts that virtual reality marketing is positioned at a vital transition point, at the beginning of the growth cycle. Yet brands that decide to leverage this technology must do so correctly to drive optimal engagement. Here are six examples to inspire your efforts.

Spotlight

Avenue Marketing Strategy and Activation

Avenue. Driving change and growth for mid-size B2B . We are: A marketing strategy and activation firm that specializes in helping middle market B2B organizations drive growth and capitalize on moments of change. You are: A mid-sized B2B business or business unit of a larger organization with ambitious new growth goals and expectations that are likely being triggered by a big change, such as a merger, change in leadership, a marketplace disruption, or even your own new product launch. As a hybrid strategy and creative firm, we can help you: better understand your buyers' needs and your organization’s nature; develop a more meaningful brand strategy; engage employees; equip and align marketing and sales; and develop more creative and effective go-to-market programs.

OTHER ARTICLES

How to Develop An ABM Strategy for Healthcare and Life Sciences

Article | March 5, 2020

Most physician outreach now takes place digitally or indirectly. This shift in engagement has made it crucial for sales and marketing teams in healthcare and life sciences (HLS) to be aligned with a unified strategy. That’s what we discovered at League. Founded in 2014, League is on a mission to consumerize health and benefits for employers. We started using Salesforce and Pardot in 2017. Back then, marketing and sales were disconnected, and this was impacting our overall performance in a negative way. Our solution was to develop our first account-based marketing strategy. We saw that ABM was a huge trend, and we loved the idea of choosing a set of target accounts, creating playbooks, and personalizing marketing campaigns to help drive meetings.

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CORE ABM

ABM Automation: 4 Steps to Plan and Pace your ABM Efforts

Article | March 5, 2020

Account-based marketing is the ultimate personalization tool. Instead of incurring unnecessary marketing expenses, an account-centric strategy segregates vital business accounts and markets directly. This means, by appealing to specific market leaders, who can benefit from what your company has to offer, you can make marketing efforts more tailored and effective. ABM strategy is not new by any means. Still, it has gained widespread recognition over the past few years as it's evolved along with the progression of technology. An entirely tech-based, the marketing automation solutions have made account-based marketing more measurable and affordable for all-sized businesses. Thus, ABM automation gained pace. Research from Marketo suggests that account-based marketing delivers a better return on investment than other various strategies for 97% of marketers. Marketing automation plays a vital role in driving impressive results. It allows companies to target their outreach based on interests and actions. But what makes ABM automation win the rat race? ABM Automation: AI is the Driver The reason why ABM automation has recently emerged is the availability of AI. Initially, AI was used by ABM to propel the automatic selection of target accounts through predictive analytics. Also, it is driving intelligent marketing nurturing and other marketing responses based on how the targets respond, their needs, and so on. If you're targeting 100 accounts as potential new corporate customers, those accounts will visit different pages of your site. Some will download white papers and respond to emails. You will get leads from the targeted companies through these activities, and thus you can knock at their door. AI enables quick responding to a dynamically changing engagement in the ABM platform and delivers the best action. This is how automation with AI is emerging in ABM platforms. You can take four steps to automate your ABM to drive leads and create a successful ABM automated platform. 4 Steps to Plan ABM Automation Draw the Automation Cycle To start with ABM automation, firstly, create a blueprint of the targeted business. In this, you should identify the complete process of lead generation. The trail looks like; subscriber, lead, MQLs, SQLs, and a client to target. In this process, you cannot communicate at each phase. When one clicks on the particular link of your website, you should have a system-generated mail to send. Once you track the movement of the lead, quickly trigger the sales team to take the follow-ups. This saves the time of salespersons, and therefore ABM strategies are implemented wisely. Integrate your ABM automation software and CRM Before you build your account-based marketing campaigns, you'll have to integrate your ABM automation software and CRM. Integrating marketing automation tools is vital in the automation process. If your ABM software doesn't interact with the email marketing software, you won't be able to automate the process. In addition, if it doesn't relate to your CRM, it will be difficult to know if leads converted into accounts and track the ROI of an account-based campaign. So, to integrate ABM automation, you'll have to research and keep ICP, content, target accounts, and CRM all in one place. Tailor Your Content Ensure you're sending the right message to the right target account. Creating customized landing pages looking at how people have recently interacted with your brand is a great way to execute automation. Using ABM tools, you can automatically message target accounts with relevant messages when they engage with you and help you build the connections that become conversions. Create Dashboard to Assess Efforts The last step to automate your ABM platform is to track and measure the efforts you have put in to see information at-a-glance. You get information about your target accounts on your dashboard, such as open deals, company score, total pipeline, and the number of decision-makers identified. In addition, you should consider ongoing A/B tests when started with ABM automation. This is because you can see what messaging appeals to your ICP (Ideal Customer Profile). ABM is a result-driven approach. ITSMA reports that 87% of marketers consider ABM as delivering the highest returns. But without automation, ABM becomes a strewn process. Marketing automation lets your team offer a personalized approach and immediate outreach with valuable content that pushes visitors to become regular clients. Thus, using ABM software tools — ideally the marketing automation tools — can help you automate and scale your strategy and adds value to your ABM efforts. Frequently Asked Questions What are the account-based marketing tactics? Account-based marketing uses hyper-personalized tactics to attract, engage, and convert high-value accounts. Similarly, it uses emails to contact existing customers and target consumers and social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and more to reach out to prospects. Why is an account-based marketing strategy so important? The importance of ABM lies in structuring marketing efforts and resources on key accounts to drive the most revenue. ABM maximizes the efficiency of your B2B marketing resources along with building the communication channel with sales to align with sales and marketing functions. How to create the automated ABM strategy? To create the automated ABM strategy, follow these steps: Create your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) Align your target accounts Build campaigns Integrate ABM, marketing automation software, and CRM Personalize content Engage Set up a dashboard for assessment { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the account-based marketing tactics?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Account-based marketing uses hyper-personalized tactics to attract, engage, and convert high-value accounts. Similarly, it uses emails to contact existing customers and target consumers and social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and more to reach out to prospects." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is an account-based marketing strategy so important?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "The importance of ABM lies in structuring marketing efforts and resources on key accounts to drive the most revenue. ABM maximizes the efficiency of your B2B marketing resources along with building the communication channel with sales to align with sales and marketing functions." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How to create the automated ABM strategy?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "To create the automated ABM strategy, follow these steps: Create your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) Align your target accounts Build campaigns Integrate ABM, marketing automation software, and CRM Personalize content Engage Set up a dashboard for assessment" } }] }

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How to Reach the Right Decision-Makers With Your Account-Based Marketing Strategy

Article | March 5, 2020

As COVID-19 became increasingly widespread in the U.S. last month, Senior Account-Based Marketing Manager Kristin Kolb had to quickly shift her department’s planned Q1 pilot. Originally, it had involved direct mail that the Matillion team was going to send to target audiences in their office. Kolb said they decided on an alternative digital approach, upping the ante with personalization efforts. “You don’t need the latest and greatest technology or idea to create a hypothesis and run a small test to see if it works,” Kolb said. Billtrust’s Director of Revenue Marketing Deirdre Mills also champions personalization. While she believes that ABM is more of an art than a science, she ties relevant prospect information into program data, keeping company initiatives in mind.

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Using Intent Data Throughout the Customer Journey

Article | March 5, 2020

Intent is an indicator that an account is interested in a certain topic, based on the content consumption of people within an organization. I know that sounds a bit abstract, so let’s look at how it actually works. Let’s say that Gio is looking at some content on marketing attribution. Gio is a Marketing Operations Specialist at Whale Enterprises, and he’s considering buying some new software. Gio’s research is creating intent data that can be tracked by intent providers, who can then let marketing attribution providers know that Whale Enterprises is showing intent to buy a marketing attribution solution.

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Spotlight

Avenue Marketing Strategy and Activation

Avenue. Driving change and growth for mid-size B2B . We are: A marketing strategy and activation firm that specializes in helping middle market B2B organizations drive growth and capitalize on moments of change. You are: A mid-sized B2B business or business unit of a larger organization with ambitious new growth goals and expectations that are likely being triggered by a big change, such as a merger, change in leadership, a marketplace disruption, or even your own new product launch. As a hybrid strategy and creative firm, we can help you: better understand your buyers' needs and your organization’s nature; develop a more meaningful brand strategy; engage employees; equip and align marketing and sales; and develop more creative and effective go-to-market programs.

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