B2B Trending Conversations: Sales Success, Influencer Marketing, AI and More

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The weather outside may be frightful, but the B2B social traffic is delightful this week as we rapidly approach the end of the year. While we may be gearing up for the holidays, there’s still plenty of work to be done and there’s also lots of great new B2B articles, posts, tweets, infographics and more to share. This week, we’ll examine why your sales reps are losing leads, we’ll learn what artificial intelligence has in common with B2B marketing and we’ll study social ROI metrics. We’ve also got great influencer marketing tips in an insightful Dun & Bradstreet podcast, as well as an infographic on B2B content marketing best practices. So cozy up with your favorite winter beverage and get caught up on all the latest B2B buzz!

 

B2B Sales

Why are your sales reps failing to close deals? John White, founder and CMO of Social Marketing Solutions, writes in this Inc. article that a struggling sales team is very likely making one or more of a common set of mistakes, including failure to effectively utilize social media, being too pushy with prospects, sending annoying “just checking in” emails and failure to do homework. Reps who do more talking than listening, who badmouth competitors or who employ “hard close” tactics are also much less likely to seal the deal.

 

B2B AI

Apple’s big announcement last week that it would begin publishing its artificial intelligence research kicked up considerable dust in the B2B space. But why? Leadspace content marketing manager Ari Soffer links Apple AI to B2B marketing, noting that data quality is more important than AI algorithm sophistication when it comes to implementing AI for B2B sales and marketing.    “A relatively basic machine-learning algorithm with good data will outperform even a far more advanced deep-learning model, if the latter is working off of bad data,” writes Soffer, who adds that a company’s staff is a big caveat to effectively implementing AI.

 

B2B Social Media

As social media becomes an increasingly critical component of most every B2B company’s marketing strategy, many marketers still haven’t mastered how to measure the return on investment of social media. Shelly Kramer at V3B helps demystify social ROI metrics, from conversions and leads to shares, engagement and follower growth. “I’m a great advocate for using data to monitor and justify performance,” writes Kramer. “After all, if you’re not measuring, you’re not marketing.”

 

Influencer Marketing (Podcast)

Dun & Bradstreet Director of Engagement Dustin Luther sits down with Influence & Co. co-founder John Hall for a revealing discussion about the tricks of the trade of influencer marketing. This podcast focuses on three steps marketers can take to get started on the road to success today, including brainstorming what good information you can provide, knowing the platforms on which to share first and deciding who can best help you succeed.

 

B2B Content Marketing (Infographic)

Integrated digital marketing and SEO specialist Jomer Gregorio breaks down eight B2B content marketing best practices in this infographic shared by Business 2 Community. According to CMI, 88 percent of B2B marketers utilize content marketing as part of their overall strategies, affirming that it is one of the most successful business strategies for SEO optimization and increased revenue. However, many marketers struggle to hone their content marketing plans for maximum success. Common mistakes include keyword stuffing, failure to document content strategies and create content calendars, failure to vary content and a lack of understanding of precisely what type of customers are being targeted. Marketers should also implement robust social media strategies, create mobile-friendly content and ceaselessly measure success.

 

We hope you enjoyed this week’s B2B Trending Conversations. We’ll be back again next week; until then you can check out our most recent column here, and as always, we’d love to hear from you if you have shareworthy B2B content, a hot tip or a cool pitch. We’re at @B2BNewsNetwork.

 

Image source: 42works.net

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Brett Wilkins

Brett Wilkins

Brett Wilkins is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for U.S. news. Based in San Francisco, he is the editor and publisher of Moral Low Ground and is a Yahoo! Featured Political Contributor.