2 weeks ago I was in Arizona to recharge my B2B marketing batteries, at Content2Conversion.
This conference, organized by Marketing Exchange, was a gathering of 1000 B2B marketing practitioners.
Major researchers such as Forrester and IDC were on site with recent statistics. Also, the “trade show” portion was overflowing with “account-based marketing”, marketing automation, artificial intelligence, and video, just for starters.
Outside the numerous case studies that were presented, the whole of the conference was divided into three themes: ABM, sales-marketing integration and lead generation.
Everyone understood the importance of integrating sales and marketing. Not one discipline being swallowed by the other, but rather a fusion of the two. A one-two punch needed to stand out. The plenary sessions never failed to speak to both Sales and Marketing.
ABM (Account-Based Marketing) is still a catch-all concept. Fortunately, there were a few case studies to put some meat on the bone. One thing for sure, though, ABM promises to be a marketing tsunami over the next few years. In all fairness, some cases referred to “accounts” that were so big that the term “account based” applied to classification such as ABM Tier 1 / Tier 2 / Tier 3. I get the strong impression that the data generating predictive marketing and the advances of the artificial intelligence for marketing purposes will be pushing this concept forward strongly from here to the end of 2017!
Lead generation is an omnipresent concern. On the other hand, there don’t seem to be any new ways of attacking the problem. We found that social selling was a reoccurring theme but its hopes seem to be pinned to data processing, machine learning, chatbots and tutti quanti. Faced with this, there is an upsurge in the Persona phenomenon, and in anything designed to help better understand the consumer (there is still quite a lot of research on “the buyer”) to better feed The beast with which he deals before talking to a human.
A look back on Content2Conversion
I’ll conclude by saying that B2B remains resolutely focused on the customer and that content remains at the heart of marketing concerns … probably because it is the only element us humans still have some control over.
I’ll be back to you soon with the key moments at this conference.