April 8, 2021
April 8, 2021
It upturned our lives and changed the way we behave and make decisions. Fortunately, we have access to advanced technology that has allowed many of us to continue doing businesses—from anywhere.
We hold meetings on Zoom, organize work processes through Google calendars, and collaborate together using tools like Figma, Notion, and Google Docs. The commute to work is a whole lot easier, and some companies have even been able to save on overheads. New technologies facilitated many of these adaptations.
B2B organizations are no exception when it comes to making COVID-related changes.
As our technology use has shifted, so too have customer behaviors and expectations. Remote capabilities and a heightened online presence have led customers to expect companies to do more, faster. Not only that, but, now more than ever, customers are searching for an experience. As such, companies are examining existing strategies and striving to rise to this new experiential challenge. Enter the Account-Based Experience concept.
In a market that’s oversaturated with competition, organizations have to focus on the experience customers have with a product to set their brand apart. If a customer associates a positive experience with a product or brand they are more likely to repeat business. Companies that don’t keep up with trends in the market will fall behind.
So what does this all mean for you?
ABX is a strategic offshoot of Account-Based Marketing. It focuses on a set of customers within a select account and the experiences they have around a particular product or brand. By providing your customers with personalized, positive experiences they are more likely to continually purchase your products. The goal of an ABX strategy is to increase brand awareness and turn prospective buyers into product advocates.
Successfully carrying out an ABX strategy requires alignment and transparency among teams. Such teamwork can be aided by clever usage of technology and the right data. Technology helps us mine the data we need, enriches the information so it provides a fuller picture, and gets the data where it needs to go—all at a rapid pace.
In the game of ABM/ABX, speed is everything. The reality of the modern landscape is that a customer can be lost within a 5 minute window. Speed can be the difference between losing out to a competitor and creating a lifelong customer partnership.
ABX requires companies to invest in and align with technologies that help them foster the customer relationship and experience. All teams within a company need the right tools and systems to help them find new prospects, collect and analyze data, and maintain customer connections throughout the entire product experience.
Technology isn’t stagnant and we are constantly making advancements. The future is bright for B2B, but we need to make the right investments now to uncover true opportunities.
Here are 5 technologies that can help your business achieve its ABX strategy goals in 2021.
Artificial Intelligence is set to define our future. This groundbreaking and transformative technology could revolutionize the B2B landscape. Many companies have already made the dive and are looking into AI in some form. A main AI interest area is how AI can enhance the customer experience.
One widespread AI feature is chatbots. Five years ago only a few organizations were applying one, but today they are very common. Chatbots can come in many forms:
A pillar of their success is their customer-facing UI. However, the fact that chatbots interact directly with the customer makes it extremely important that you get them right. Chatbots need to be backed by a lot of data, with systems in place to reliably collect and analyze that data.
Potentially, the applications for chatbots are endless. Chatbots can be programmed to create great user experiences with friendly interfaces and personalized messages for prospect customers based on where they sit in the marketing funnel. They’re a great auxiliary to help empower your teams and can provide a reliable data stream for sales.
Some futurists predict that most if not all customer interactions with a company are likely to be conducted via AI once AI can reliably copy human conversation and behaviors.
However, it’s still early on and AI is currently quite expensive for organizations to self-implement. To have chatbots effectively working at capacity requires a lot of financial investment. Some B2Bs are looking to larger companies to fill this gap and supply their AI application technology as a service; think Google Assistant or Amazon’s Alexa.
Data drives our technology. It’s the most important piece of the puzzle. Without data businesses don’t know who their customers are, what they want, what their issues are, or how to solve those issues. Processes are hollow and simple tasks for sales and marketing are difficult to carry out.
Not all data is good, however; some of it is bad data. Whether it’s decayed, inaccurate, non-standardized, or duplicate, it can have serious effects on your systems and processes. To manage your data effectively, invest in systems that clean your dirty data and help successfully execute your ABX strategy.
With clean, accurate data, you’re better able to understand your customer and build a customer experience that is personalized and memorable. In 2021, maintaining a healthy database culture and customer satisfaction is paramount.
To help keep your data in tip-top shape check out service providers like RingLead, who offers comprehensive database management features such as:
Invest in automated prevention processes to preserve your database health and allow you to solve the problems of today. Accurate data allows you to provide the ultimate experience for your customers and capitalize on opportunities.
To empower your data and fuel the enrichment processes, you need reputable sources of data to leverage against your own. Aside from your own data mining capabilities, a 3rd-party data vendor is a valuable solution for data completion.
Finding a reputable data vendor for your company can be challenging. Fortunately, there are services out there that do the hard work of finding the right vendor for you. Marketplaces like The Data Exchange have dozens of vendors across multiple categories with thousands of attributes.
Here are 3 examples of vendors on the Data Exchange:
"If you have a strong go to market motion for B2B, we are a strong fit. Our sales process (almost) always involves a data test, so you can validate for yourself how strong our data is for what you want to accomplish."
- Ashley Taylor
Head of Partnerships at Clearbit
As said above, speed is everything. A 5-minute window can make the difference between providing a superior customer experience and losing out to a more responsive competitor. One technology that’s on everyone’s minds as a result is 5G, the 5th generation of mobile internet connectivity.
5G offers faster internet speeds with potentially limitless capabilities for uploading and downloading. Businesses that want to get ahead need to seize this opportunity. 5G can directly increase positive outcomes for B2Bs simply by providing a fast service for their customers. You can’t afford to have a slow service or product; the customer will grow impatient and look elsewhere.
Here are some of the capabilities 5G allows B2Bs:
The Coronavirus has put pressure on our systems. Luckily 5G helps companies be online 24/7, from anywhere. 5G has the capability to enable faster computers, machine learning, and data management software. Great data management software, in turn, allows for a faster transfer of data, automation, and increased capabilities for cloud storage software.
5G has the potential to generate entire new industries, just as 4G did. Now is the time to invest in 5G and watch it help your business grow.
Having programs in place to clean incoming data streams will greatly increase the efficiency of your company. If you don’t have systems in place to automatically route leads in real time to corresponding sales reps, you are going to lose time and therefore customers.
Contacting prospects faster greatly improves the experience customers have with your brand. To help your business grow, look to invest in systems that can intelligently route qualified leads within target accounts.
Using a data cleansing program in conjunction with 3rd-party data and an intelligent routing system creates a holistic experience. It’s the most effective and efficient way to enhance the customer experience and generate high-value opportunities.
Using an all-in-one data orchestration platform like RingLead allows you to create a cleaner data culture and route clean, accurate lead data to the correct salesperson in real time. Use your clean data with an intelligent routing system to reduce the time it takes to contact leads and create a better experience for your customer.
Let’s take a look:
Meet Jana. Jana’s a Designer who’s in the market for a new laptop for her business. After going online and doing a bit of research, Jana contacts two different companies to inquire about their wares. Company A responds to Jana quickly. They begin a customer relationship, and she buys her new laptop on the call. Company B responds to Jana the following day. Jana ignores them as she’s already purchased a laptop from Company A. Company B lost the sale and potentially a repeat buying customer.
Company B has eroded their brand image and Jana remembers her poor experience of their slow customer service.
By adopting one or all of the above technologies early on in your strategy, you can help your business achieve greatness.
If your company has hit a wall and you’re losing customers in 2021, look to see how adopting one of these technologies to use in your ABX strategy can help your company recover.
In 2021 we have the opportunity to take stock and hit that reset button. With more attention being given to the user experience, make the right investments to reach your company goals.