This is the week that was in B2B: from MailShrimps to Robot media buyers

30-Jan-2017 12:41:45
Back Paul Hewerdine

In a week when Trump waved two fingers to the world, 3D TV died a death and the pepper robot was revealed as the answer to Britain’s social care crisis, fortunately B2B marketers had plenty of things to distract themselves with:

‘How long is a piece of string’ of the week…

…goes to Marketing Land as it looked to set the record straight on how much B2B companies should be investing in digital marketing. While the answer is very much ‘it depends’, there’s plenty of guidance here to inform your strategy. Some choice stats include the fact that total marketing spend for B2Bers is on average 7.5% of revenue (it’s higher for B2B product companies versus service providers). Complex sales cycle? The recommendation is to direct 25-50% of budget on digital. B2B e-commerce model? Up it to 35-70% of budget. Check the numbers out for yourself here.

‘Another step towards world dominance’ of the week…

…goes to IBM Watson. The Drum revealed that IBM has started using Watson AI to buy its online media in the UK. Watson apparently learns how effectively a campaign is performing for different audiences at different times and locations. It then bids on inventory that matches these audiences. Is it working? Well in the US it’s already helped reduce IBM's cost per click by 71%. So why wouldn’t you? Media agencies be afraid, very afraid. Find out more here.

‘Genius B2B campaign’ of the week…

…goes to MailChimp. What do you do if your customers keep on getting your name wrong? You make a play on it. MailShrimp – there’s an ad for that. KaleLimp. That too. JailBlimp. Why not? Big pat on the back MailChimp – well done you.

‘Start-up planning tool’ of the week…

…goes to Eric Stromberg and his Startup Idea Matrix. It essentially pulls together the tactics a company can take to bring a unique product to market, cross-referenced with actual examples from lots of different markets. While it’s primarily focused on B2C startups today, Eric's mooted the idea of a B2B one. Worth checking out before IBM Watson steals all these ideas and uses AI to create a 100% automated startup to clean up. Get the lowdown here.

‘Obliterating bad working habits’ of the week…

…goes to Google, Facebook and Twitter who according to Fast Company are actively trying to tackle the bad habits of their employees. Taking phones into meetings? Don’t do it – too distracting. Eating lunch alone? Don’t do it – sticky keyboard. Staying subscribed to pointless enewsletters? Don’t do it – de-clutter your inbox. Food for thought. Read more.

‘B2B marketing advice’ of the week…

…goes to Hugh Macfarlane who sets out to explore how B2B buying behaviour is changing and what to do about it. Drawing on recent insights from top industry experts, Hugh makes some interesting observations. Like the need to align with the buying process, not the selling process. Like the fact buyers want less content and more than insight alone. Like the need to get really micro – to make what we’re doing way more relevant and effective. Plenty to pore over here.

Bonus material:

...Google’s Oscar nominated VR-short. In a word, lovely.

...Instant apps – gathering pace. Could become a very big deal.

...Track anything using your smartphone with TrackR.

This is the week that was. Keep on protesting world.

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