At 3 Aspens Media, we don’t just keep up with trends in B2B marketing because it’s our bread and butter. We keep up because we’re obsessed. And, of course, because we want to provide the most relevant, effective content and services for our clients.
Since we apply these trends in real-time with a diverse set of clients in our industries, we have a good sense of how trends actually pay off over time – and which might be worth adding to your arsenal. In the spirit of sharing, here are three trends strongly affecting us and our clients right now.
GA4 Caused a Bit of Panic – But It’s Okay
Mid-2023, companies had to shift from Universal Analytics (UA) to Google Analytics 4 (GA4). Most of us knew it was coming. It was looming in the distance, and perhaps our SEO and analytics folks handled it for us. However, it’s an important change for B2B marketing that’s worth understanding at a high level.
Though it can seem like a strenuous change, try to look on the bright side: How you can use it to improve your marketing, optimize the user experience, better understand customers and how they interact with your brand, discover if you’re hitting your target market and target markets more efficiently.
- Allows you to see customer data from multiple devices and the ways they interact with you, not just your website.
- Measures engagement differently, categorizing all user activities as events so you can see more than just pageviews.
- Has more robust, intuitive reporting capabilities.
- Allows you to generate custom reports. Check out this great guide to custom reports in GA4 from Moz.
- Has a comprehensive search function so you can ask more intuitive questions.
The marketing world thus far is a big fan of the new engagement and retention reports in GA4. The improved funnel analysis is also a favorite.
Check out Google’s resourceful guides and videos for using and leveraging GA4 in their Analytics Help Center.
Majority Already Rules on Generative AI
Three out of four B2B marketers use generative AI tools, and many predict it will play a starring role in content marketing in 2024 (Content Marketing Institute). Of course, this isn’t hard to believe as we close out 2023.
After over a year of seeing what generative AI can do, a few clear concerns have come to light for B2B marketers:
- The use of AI will likely make capturing search traffic more challenging.
- Many businesses and organizations already using AI do not have guidelines or processes for doing so, such as how to develop prompts or conduct fact-checking.
- Forrester warns that low-quality content produced using AI could “degrade the purchase experience” for B2B buyers – and frustrate them. To combat this, Forrester suggests B2B marketers “invest in fresh buyer and customer persona interviews and use the transcripts to guide their content personalization efforts.”
According to the Content Marketing Institute, the top content-related use cases for generative AI in B2B marketing are:
- Brainstorming topics
- Researching headlines, keywords, etc.
- Writing drafts
If you’re planning to do more with generative AI in 2024, check out this guide to using it safely from MarketingProfs.
Video is Topping the Charts
In many industries, video is surging to the top as the most preferred content type. As such, it’s the top content type for which most B2B marketers are planning to increase their investment in 2024 (Content Marketing Institute).
In fact, much data indicates that video is a dominant, effective content format now and will continue to be so into the next year.
- DemandGen projects video content will be a key B2B marketing strategy for 2024 planning.
- Semrush counts video and visual content as factors that lead to success in content marketing in their State of Content Marketing 2023 Global Report. The same report shows:
- Video is the content format that performs best, according to those surveyed.
- Top-performing video formats include short-form videos, about us and product videos and success stories.
- Just one video can increase traffic to an article by 70 percent.
- Video has the highest ROI of all media formats – particularly short-form video, according to the 2023 HubSpot State of Marketing.
Want to incorporate more video in your B2B marketing? Check out this article from Forbes on transforming B2B engagement with video marketing.
If you’d like support reaching your B2B marketing goals with content, reach out to discuss content gaps and opportunities at your company or organization.