Fast-evolving digital and mobile technology are fundamentally altering the B2B marketing landscape—as well as how marketing professionals perceive that landscape. New research from communications software firm Ytel takes a look at the state of B2B marketing communications and the impact of still-emerging digital technologies.
The survey had some results that confirm what many would expect, but also some that may be surprising.
An example of the latter: just 19 percent of marketing leaders said they were very familiar with automation and the ways that it can drive marketing campaigns. Much less surprising was the continuing centrality of email to marketing efforts.
While 58 percent said that they like to utilize phones for marketing, 39 percent use email as their main way to communicate with customers, exceeding the use of social media (17 percent), digital ads (7 percent) and direct mail (7 percent).
SMS is the primary way for 58 percent of survey respondents to harness mobile technology for marketing, while 31 percent utilize it for cold calling, 6 percent for robo-dialing and 5 percent for ringless voicemail.
Notwithstanding the rapid advance of marketing technology, most marketing leaders still report difficulty in successfully reaching their target audiences: Nearly 60 percent either “strongly agreed” or “somewhat agreed” with the statement, “I have a hard time getting my message and content in front of my target audience.”
“This survey offers further evidence of how much digital technology is shaping, or reshaping, all aspects of marketing communications, changing not only how businesses use marketing communications, but even how it’s defined,” said Ytel CEO Nick Newsom, in a news release.
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“These trends will likely become even more pronounced as AI’s development accelerates and as the IoT becomes more integrated with our daily lives—these devices will know the present and immediate status of our behavior, and that opens up new and uncharted possibilities of communication,” Newsom added.
Ytel queried over 2,000 marketing leaders for this survey.