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- October 20, 2017 - Edition #816 Circulation 4300+ Weekly - Ron Richardson - Editor -

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In this issue:

1. Notes from Ron (Editor): Generate Consistent Leads and Sales for Any Business...using LinkedIn

2. Internet News You Need: Exclusive research: The growing role of Amazon in the customer journey

3. Mobile Marketing: 9 Mobile Technology Trends For 2017 (Infographic)

4. Feature Article: How to Use Personalization to Shorten the B2B Sales Cycle

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1. Notes from Ron

"I'd like to we welcome all the current loyal
subscribers, as well as the new ones
coming aboard everyday."






Enjoy the read...
Have a great week!


Ron Richardson - Editor -
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2. Internet Marketing News You Need

Exclusive research: The growing role of Amazon in the customer journey
Ecommerce sites such as Amazon play a more significant role in the customer journey than other channels including TV advertising, social media, online display and search engines, according to exclusive new research published today by ClickZ Intelligence…Read the rest

Artificial intelligence in action: 5 brands brilliantly executing AI

You’ve heard all the forecasts: Robots are going to take away our jobs (possibly even within five years, according to new PricewaterhouseCoopers research) as artificial intelligence turns the world on its head. But of course, AI isn’t really the “next big thing” because it’s already here…Read the rest

How are traditional banks competing for customers in a digitally disrupted industry?
Big banks might have been too big to fail, but they’re not too big to be disrupted. Fueled by a fintech revolution that is taking place in every corner of the financial services market, challenger banks are taking aim at the customer bases of their much larger and much richer competitors…Read the rest



3. Mobile Marketing


9 Mobile Technology Trends For 2017 (Infographic)
By: Andrew Gazdecki

Mobile technology trends are definitely something to be aware of. Learning something new comes in at #6 on the top 10 New Year’s resolutions made every year. That means there are quite a few people in the world who are open to change. When it comes to technology—especially mobile technology—if you are not open to learning something new every single day, you will easily find yourself on the shelf with the Commodore 64.

If you are a small business owner, it’s a good idea that your New Year’s resolution should consist of not only learning something new in your niche but also learning what your competitors are doing with all the advances in technology that are on the horizon for the new year.

One topic that should stay on your radar this year is mobile. And you should be asking yourself more precisely, “Since so much of my competition is on the verge of going mobile, how can mobile apps help me grow my small business? How can I adopt a mobile strategy in 2017?”

2017 stands to be a benchmark year for mobile, and there are several reasons why. Not only is new and exciting technology infiltrating the mobile development sector, but the cost of adopting a mobile app for small businesses will also actually be within reach in 2017. The affordable price alone should encourage you to make “learning how to use mobile marketing” your New Year’s resolution.

Just look what mobile has to offer in 2017.

With major brands like Subway, Dominos, 7-11, Starbucks, and so many others seeing success with consumer facing mobile apps it only makes sense that small businesses will follow suit. In fact, it is said that more than 50% of small businesses will be looking to create a mobile app in 2017.

2016 broke some impressive grounds for location-based app services, and 2017 will certainly take these new discoveries to new levels. Location based services will allow business to offer customers real-time deals based on their location alone.

Augmented reality apps are thought by many to be gimmicky, but as they start to integrate with utility apps, they are quickly becoming some of the most actively engaging apps out there today. The best part? Their benefits to business can help to boost the customer engagement that millennial customers desire.

Instant apps are the solution to abandoned apps. Google’s new technology will allow apps to run instantly when they are needed—no downloading, no installing. Simply search, have your app turn up and do its job, then move on. Instant apps are the perfect solution for a quick mobile experience.

More and more developers are starting to embed AI into their apps. This technology could be groundbreaking for the educational industry. Apps that can teach kids to learn based on how they learn could easily skyrocket test scores across the globe. The same can be said for mobile commerce—apps that shop for you based on what you like. Imagine your personal tutor and personal shopper, right on your phone.

As more and more gadgets, household necessities, and “things” continue to connect to the internet, more and more apps are needed to control them remotely. IoT in 2017 will contribute substantially to mobile’s success.

As mobile phones continue to evolve into purses and wallets, security is without a doubt a major concern—rightfully so. Developers have put security in 2017 at the top of their priority list.

The numbers for mobile speak for themselves. It’s predicted that in 2017, there will be 268 million mobile apps downloaded, and those downloads will translate to $77 billion dollars in revenue for businesses. Keep in mind; that revenue is not just generated strictly by the app’s download. You have to remember that apps are marketing tools, and that means that the revenue is coming not as a result of what the app does but how the app helps to market what your business does.

Business with the strongest mobile strategy understand that apps have a purpose that is three-fold:

  •      Increasing sales through mobile
  •      Improving customer engagement
  •      Increasing customer loyalty

When you can see these three potential allies for growth, your business is sure to benefit from mobile technology.

Conclusion

A new year is always an exciting time for businesses. They get to look back at the prior year and decide what went well and what needs to be changed.

If you are looking to make some changes to grow your business in 2017, you cannot afford to overlook developing a mobile app. When over 50% of your competitors are doing so, you have no choice but to get on board.

Even if you cannot fully understand what mobile has to offer in 2017, you should make it your New Year’s resolution to learn. Remember, learning new things ranks at #6 on the top 10 New Year’s resolutions. So, you won’t be only looking to try something new.

About the Author
Andrew Gazdecki is the founder and CEO of Bizness App.



4. Feature Article

How to Use Personalization to Shorten the B2B Sales Cycle
By: Shira Abel
 

In a world of mass emails and buyers reeling under stimulus overload, personalization has become critical to B2B marketing. Buyers are becoming harder to identify and increasingly like consumers: They want personalized outreach and one-to-one interaction, every time.

Part of the reason for this is that people have action triggers, and personalization with a variable reward helps trigger a chemical reaction in the brain—a dopamine release—and a response. The Coke bottle name campaign is a good example: People love to find bottles with their own names; but, you won't always find one, so the surprise of seeing your name makes you feel special.

That's also what makes you go back to Facebook or Twitter a dozen times a day: The content is so varied, some extremely personal and on target with your interests, and others slightly off-base; it's the anticipation of what's waiting for you that's exciting—that variable reward causes a constant loop of dopamine-seeking. And it's the same reason you check your phone notifications all day long.

When you personalize something in an unexpected way, it makes the person on the receiving end to feel good and prompts them to react.

A second reason is—particularly with enterprise sales—customers buy for one reason: It will help them. So, they're always asking: Will this help me, and how?

If they have a pain keeping them up at night and your solution can resolve it, they'll consider you and your product or service. However, they're likely going to research your company and solution—reading your website and materials several times—before starting a conversation. With marketing tools like those from Marketo, Eloqua, and HubSpot, you can now see what they're up to: There are tons of tools that can show you who's doing what on your website.

Then there are platforms that can change the content or messages on your site based on what those people are doing and how many times they've visited, according to where the tool presumes the prospect is in the funnel. By doing that, the tool is essentially taking customers by the hand and digitally guiding them through the funnel process. That's partly why personalization is so important. It leads to quicker wins because subconsciously the customer feels that your solution is right for them, even if they don't realize this process is happening.

And, third, identifying the right buyers is becoming significantly more complicated: Today, B2B purchases are often a group buy. You might know the key decision-makers, evangelists, and the signer, but you probably don't know who any of the other players are—and they're all important. There's no way to find out who they are unless they come to your site and download something, or you use a strong business intelligence (BI) tool.

That means you need to build relationships, which happens only through personalization. Your prospect isn't going to respond or confide in you if they think you don't understand them. They don't want to feel like a name on a spreadsheet getting a mass email "personalized" with their name. marketers need to go far beyond that. They need to get to know their customers and send them highly relevant content.

When you really personalize outreach based on someone's industry, pain points, and other data, a buyer sees it and thinks, "That looks like me. I must be their customer—this product must be for me."

Tips for Personalizing the Experience

Personalizing outreach and building relationships will absolutely elicit a better response and help reduce the sales cycle. The question then becomes, How do you do that?

Here are five tips.

1. Talk to the customer and listen

Ask how they do things to achieve a goal, and look for gaps. Listen more than you speak. If you can't talk to the customer, listen in on sales calls.

2. Lean on your sales team

They are closest to the customers, and no one knows customers better. Work with Sales to understand customer pain points, challenges, and other information you can use to personalize content and marketing programs.

3. Send third-party content

It's not just about you: If you want to build a relationship, don't just send stuff about yourself—especially during the trust-building phase. You want to appear helpful and resourceful, so the more content you send that's not about you, the better.

4. Treat everyone like a buyer

It's tough to identify the right people to build relationships with. There are no technologies yet that can effectively identify the right buyers or influencers to help move deals forward—at least not independently.

Companies doing account-based marketing (ABM) are identifying these people through back channels and networking. Thus, everyone has to be treated like a potential buyer. If you think someone is in a large account you're targeting, you have to lay out the red carpet and make them feel like everything is there just for them—the content you're sending, the messages on the website, etc.

Personalization is so much more important when you don't know exactly who the buyer is, and when it's no longer just one buyer making the decision.

5. Use technology to support personalization

The ability to interact with people in a personalized way at scale is driven by tech, and there are tools that can help with many pieces of the job, including as follows:

  • They can automatically change your website based on how many times someone has visited.
  • They personalize emails, outreach to influencers and bloggers, and social content.
  • They develop personalized content and recommendations. Picture those Amazon popups that say, "Hi Shira, we thought you might be interested in X since you bought Y." There are now B2B platforms that send custom-built content boards and might say something like, "Hi Joe, I built this for you, and it has info you might like to check out." It gives prospects that hit of dopamine and makes them feel special.
  • They help with retargeting. While it's not personalization per se, behavioral advertising works wonders. It's amazing how effective it is to follow someone online after they've visited your website.

While technology is important, you need humans for it to work properly. These tools work best when used by someone with strategic sense—meaning they shouldn't be managed by a tactical junior marketer, but by someone who understands how to leverage the information effectively.

The Time Is Now

Not all our brain chemicals can be triggered digitally, but everything that can, like dopamine, has been studied by B2C marketers and is already being put into practice by Coke, Amazon, Netflix, and the like. B2B marketers have always known this information is important, but we are only now starting to tap into how vital it really is. And, with technology, we are now able to act on it.

The marketers who take advantage of the opportunities afforded by personalization will be the ones who succeed. They'll have shorter sale times, more closed leads, and higher revenues. For those that don't, things won't go as well: They'll be eclipsed by their competition.

If you want to better engage your buyers and reduce your sales cycle, now is the time to start personalizing your B2B marketing program.

About the Author
Shira Abel
 is CMO of Folloze, an enterprise ABM sales platform, and the CEO of Hunter & Bard, a marketing agency that works with SaaS companies.
LinkedIn: Shira Abel - Twitter: @shiraabel

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