Today, one of the biggest technological advancements is Artificial intelligence (AI), which has immense B2B sales and marketing potential. That's why enterprises have transformed their marketing strategies by adopting full automation via smart AI technology.
Around 87% of businesses plan to use AI for sales forecasting. Whether it's engaging more website visitors or managing predictive analytic campaigns, AI is quickly becoming an integral part of the success of B2B marketers. In this article, we'll take an elaborative look at the impact of Artificial Intelligence on B2B sales and marketing and the challenges and opportunities that come with it.
Impact of AI on B2B Sales & Marketing
With AI technology, B2B sales and marketing have witnessed significant and transformative growth, revolutionizing various aspects of the industry by enabling businesses to enhance their whole business process.
- AI helps businesses and encourages customers to have a more personalized experience. Through this, marketers use their software to get insights and provide the customer with smart purchase decisions.
- AI has made predicting customers' future purchase choices and shopping patterns easier using predictive analytics blended with the natural language process.
- We have all seen how Amazon uses AI-powered product recommendations using tags like 'recommended for you' or 'customers also bought' while purchasing or adding something to your cart. This works amazingly for the brand by encouraging customers to increase the value of their carts.
- Similarly, HubSpot used AI-powered chatbots to engage with visitors and generate leads through conversation.
- With automation tools, it has become quite easy to facilitate repetitive and time-consuming tasks in AI-driven B2B marketing. Automating email outreach, lead nurturing, and follow-up activities can be managed by robots so that high-value activities, such as building relationships, could be prioritized by real human beings.
- AI in B2B sales and marketing has also influenced competition in business. It has worked to many organizations' advantage by enabling them to deliver optimized marketing campaigns, provide a superior customer experience, and generate more qualified leads.
5 Ways How AI will transform B2B Sales and Marketing
Enhanced Lead Generation and Scoring
AI in B2B marketing has started overcoming some of the biggest challenges marketers face, including generating high-quality leads and increasing leads. The labor intensity of data collection, analysis, and management plays quite a significant role in marketing problems. That's why data collection and analysis can be automated by incorporating AI into lead generation processes. This results in an increased number of quality-generated leads. Lead generation is a time-consuming manual task, so when automation came into this area, it became a powerful business process optimizer and a strong IT business strategy.
Pro tip: Focus on the call to action. Ensure your call to action button requests the user's details and stands out from the background. The button text must be clear; for instance, 'Download Free eBook' tells users the result of a click. The button's location should be eye-catching.
Your content can be amazing and optimized, but it will only succeed if you publish it right. And that's where the implementation of AI in the B2B space works the best. It helps drive maximum engagement by providing the right content at the right time and in the right manner.
Simply put, the best time to publish any written or social media content is in the evening or afternoon. Similarly, the best time for sending marketing emails is in the morning, when your audience wakes with a fresh mind. AI monitors your customer's behavior to determine the optimal publishing times. This way, it schedules your content and publishes it accordingly on its own.
Optimized Website Functionality
Usually, in B2B businesses, marketers miss out on scrutinizing their website performance data to identify any issues or improvement areas. But with AI-powered analytics tools, machine intelligence can shorten complex data into easy and actionable insights.
And the best part is that if there is any sudden or unauthorized data transfer, AI can immediately notify the marketers about it. The same goes for when there is an abrupt spike in a critical metric, like the percentage of the audience that leaves your website just after a single page session. This way, businesses can improve their website's functioning and performance.
The main problem with SEO optimization manually isn't just the time consumption; it's far more than that. And AI recognizes that and helps inform the new content by identifying trendy content, making keyword predictions, and discovering competitive gaps. Moreover, AI optimizes your website's old content for SERPs using dynamic keywords strategy and link updates. This way, your old content stays fresh, and the new one stays ahead of the curve.
Although AI cannot be that reliable when it comes to actually creating engaging content, with its marketing tools, writers can surely use it to enhance and optimize their content according to SEO best practices. AI-powered tools will help you make more optimized, professional, and error-free content.
Pro tip: Remember, SEO isn't just about keywords anymore; it's about providing valuable content. Research Google's recent "Helpful Content Update" to ensure your content is on the right track. This update emphasizes a people-first strategy and encourages SEO experts to focus on search intent, relevant subtopics, and content demonstrating expertise and depth. SEO is a lot more than just adding keywords; you need to deliver substantive value.
Improved Customer Insights
To keep your business at a competitive advantage, it's essential to conduct personalized targeting from the minute a customer enters your sales funnel. This is essential to developing accurate buyer personas and ideal customer profiles (ICP). And this is where AI benefits most through social listening and analysis tools that help businesses achieve their goals.
Challenges and Opportunities in AI Implementation
AI has played a significant and transformative role in strengthening the B2B sales and marketing industry. By improving business-customer relationships and streamlining sales processes, AI has enhanced the multi-segment marketing strategies of B2B businesses. However, the new technology also comes with certain challenges as well as opportunities, which we have discussed below:
- Data Quantity and Quality: One of the biggest challenges B2B marketers face with AI implementation is data quantity and quality. The thing with AI algorithms is that they require large amounts of data to make more accurate predictions.
- Skepticism: Another major challenge with AI implementation is skepticism in people's minds about its capabilities. Customers often hesitate to interact with the AI-powered system, making it quite difficult for businesses to adapt to AI usage.
- Incorporation into existing systems: Incorporation of AI into the existing sales and marketing methods can also be challenging for businesses, as they have already invested in implementing these systems. So, incorporating AI would become more difficult and time-consuming as well.
- Outmoded Infrastructure: As AI delivers the desired results, it also requires much information to process within seconds. And that becomes quite difficult with the outdated infrastructure many companies still use. To learn and develop methods with machine learning, one needs to be prepared to invest in its tools, infrastructure, and application, which becomes very challenging for marketers.
- Requires Good Investment: Implementing AI in your business takes time to come cost-efficiently. You need to collaborate with an AI expert and launch an ongoing AI training program for your employees to get comfortable with AI and the requirement for machine learning tools. And all of this requires a good investment.
With the help of AI-powered tools and insights, businesses are boosting their sales by meeting the demand and needs of customers, generating more leads, and giving them a personalized experience. And as marketing is known to have the best usage of AI thus far, in the coming years, the B2B sales and marketing industry will be revolutionized on a whole new level.
Kamna Saini is a guest contributor to the MarinOne blog.