Agile Tools and Techniques for the Modern B2B Marketer

May 30, 2024 Content Marketing no comments

Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels 

There has been a significant shift in recent years in enterprise spending and how business buyers engage with B2B companies. As a result, traditional B2B marketing is no longer working.

Just as buyers have evolved, the way B2B companies market to buying teams needs to evolve as well.

While emerging technologies are helping B2B companies upgrade their digital marketing solutions, it is also their tactics that need to change. As buyers become more discerning and prudent, marketing strategies need to be more personalized, customer-centric, and responsive to better engage and influence buyer decisions. Having to appeal to multiple buyers across multiple industries simultaneously also requires more flexible tactics to adapt to varying market conditions and buyer needs.

This kind of marketing strategy, one that is responsive, customer-centric, and flexible is known as agile marketing. This article will take a closer look at the evolving landscape of the B2B market today, how agile marketing can help B2B teams adapt more effectively, and offer insights into the best B2B digital marketing strategy, tools and techniques.

The Evolving Landscape of B2B Marketing

As buyer behaviors are shifting, we are seeing new trends shaping B2B marketing. Enterprise spending is shifting as the buyer journey has changed. Buyers take much longer to make decisions today as their journey now often involves visiting the website, attending webinars, conducting research, and evaluating peer reviews before even accepting a sales meeting.

Because the buying cycle is now much longer, marketers need to work harder to keep buyers engaged for longer periods. Doing this requires a more customer-centric strategy that involves carefully researching and understanding every enterprise buyer of the target audience. Marketing content frameworks must be thoughtfully designed to address each individual buyer or buyer team.

Those who make the buying decisions are not always the easiest to get a hold of as they are often on the go. This means marketing efforts need to be flexible and cater to buyers no matter where they are, which requires a strategy that engages buyers across the internet on all devices with omnichannel marketing.

Understanding Agile Marketing

As B2B companies face new challenges from shifting buyer behaviors, agile marketing will become the most effective counter-strategy. So what is agile marketing exactly?

While traditional B2B marketing focuses on rigid long-term plans, agile marketing is about speed, iteration, and flexibility that embraces team collaboration, customer prioritization, and openness and the ability to quickly change and adapt.

Agile marketing is more responsive and personalized to meet the very specific and often changing needs of enterprise buying teams. This means using the right set of tools, techniques, and technologies to keep teams nimble and buyers engaged to drive better results.

Tools and Techniques for Agile B2B Marketing

Below are the five key tools and techniques that comprise the most effective agile B2B marketing strategies:

1. Iterative Planning

Traditional marketing involves complex, long-term planning with elaborate roadmaps which are often rigid and don’t do well when change is needed. Agile marketing, on the other hand, is about short, more manageable tasks and projects that are often broken up into sprints or cycles. This allows for more flexibility and being able to adapt based on what was learned at the end of each sprint.

2. Process Transparency

A critical component of effective agile marketing is having transparent visibility of team processes. Traditional teamwork is often achieved through email communication and even face-to-face conversations, but this often leads to a lack of visibility into the overall project and who is doing what.

To combat this issue, agile teams use visualization tools to create more transparency so everyone can easily see and understand what is happening. The two primary types of tools that are used in these cases include Scrum and Kanban boards.

Scrum boards are divided into vertical columns or horizontal lanes and are used to track work in incremental sprints. Kanban boards are also used to visualize and track work but specifically focus on process flow to limit in-progress tasks and minimize idle time to maximize overall workflow.

Process transparency is also about agile documentation. This means ensuring everything from documents and diagrams to templates is highly visual and easy to understand. This can include UML diagrams, story maps, product backlogs, and burndown charts. When creating agile documents, it’s important to document continuously as you work, automate documentation as much as possible, use simple visual elements, and create documents collaboratively.

3. Cross-Functional Teamwork

Centralized leadership structures lead to highly controlled workflow silos that can hinder productivity. Instead, agile marketing focuses on cross-functionally and collaboration. This requires creating teams that consist of individuals with a range of skills across departments, which enables more effective completion of tasks while minimizing dependency on others outside of the core team.

4. Customer-Centricity

Every modern B2B marketing strategy must involve a deep understanding of the target customer or buyers. It is crucial to create customer-centric teams that are focused on giving the buyers what they want to avoid too much back and forth in endless meetings. Agile marketing needs to be quick, responsive, engaging, and pertinent to the client to keep the buyer decision-making process from extending longer than it already does.

5. Continuous Process Improvement

Finally, to get the most out of your agile marketing strategy, it’s important to focus on continuous improvement by measuring progress. Analytics tools are essential to track and measure performance, allowing teams to learn from their successes and failures and adapt as needed along the way. This allows for better data-driven decisions that can help optimize agile marketing strategies.

Wrapping Up

Agile marketing is fast becoming the most effective strategy to help B2B companies address the more complex challenges of today’s B2B market. As newer generations, such as millennials and Gen Z, start to fill key buyer roles, it will become increasingly necessary to adopt more agile strategies that cater to quickly changing trends in enterprise buyer behavior.

Ainsley Lawrence

BIO: Ainsley Lawrence is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest in the United States. She enjoys writing about better living through education and technology. She is frequently lost in a mystery podcast.

By Walter
Founder of Cooler Insights, I am a geek marketer with almost 24 years of senior management experience in marketing, public relations and strategic planning. Since becoming an entrepreneur 5 years ago, my team and I have helped 58 companies and over 2,200 trainees in digital marketing, focusing on content, social media and brand storytelling.

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