3 major challenges for CMOs and marketers in 2023
In 2023, CMOs and marketers will need to focus their attention on three major challenges to boost their company’s overall performance.
The First challenge: optimising revenue from existing customers in an economic climate that does not necessarily favour the acquisition of new customers. The second challenge: is to ‘speak the language’ of the CFO by measuring marketing success using more direct KPIs to release budgets. The third challenge: seizing the full potential of B2B influencer marketing to “speak” to millennials, who are now responsible for 75% of B2B purchasing decisions. Here’s how it works…
1- Optimise revenues from existing customers
In an uncertain economic climate, marketers and salespeople will need to devote more time to the customer portfolio, primarily with a view to building loyalty, but also above all to better identify and exploit up-selling and cross-selling opportunities.
According to HubSpot, more than 25% of B2B professionals will have given priority to existing customers over the acquisition of new accounts by 2022, with some success: 72% of sales managers who have relied on up-selling have generated up to 30% of their revenue through this technique. This percentage rises to 74% for sales professionals who have mobilised cross-selling.
To support this effort, B2B marketers will be expected to create relevant content aimed at existing customers, whether for “direct” distribution (newsletters, blogs, social networks) or to equip the teams in contact with these customers, particularly salespeople, account managers and Customer Success Managers (CSMs).
2- CMOs will have to speak the CFO’s language
The relatively uncertain environment will undoubtedly require CMOs to work tenfold to maintain existing budgets or strengthen them. According to a joint study by LinkedIn and YouGov, CMOs will have to :
- “Speak” the language of the CFO;
- Better demonstrate the impact of marketing actions on the revenue generated and, more broadly, on the company’s overall performance.
According to the survey, which was carried out at the end of 2022, the overwhelming majority of CMOs (98%) agree that a better understanding of marketing ROI by the CFO is essential if budgets are to be consolidated and strengthened. “It will be essential for marketing managers to go beyond indirect metrics and measure the impact of their work with sales-related KPIs such as revenue generated and the ROI of advertising campaigns,” reads the survey report.
This is not a new challenge, but it will be exacerbated by the imminent disappearance of third-party cookies, which is likely to further complicate the measurement of marketing attribution.
In a companion survey, LinkedIn explains that 77% of CMOs are “under pressure” to demonstrate the “business impact” of marketing actions before the B2B buying cycle has even reached its conclusion. “Unfortunately, many B2B marketers have had to force their results into B2C measurement frameworks that fail to capture their true impact,” explains the authors of the study.
3- Seizing the full potential of B2B influencer marketing
According to a survey conducted by PYMNTS and i2c, millennials are now responsible for 75% of B2B purchasing decisions.
According to a ground-breaking study by Heinze Marketing, these millennials are more likely to rely on the opinions and recommendations of their peers or external experts when making a purchasing decision, “unlike Generation X and baby boomers who still rely on salespeople to guide them”.
According to the study, 60% of millennials would even refuse to contact a sales rep in the first half of their buying journey. This conclusion is in line with a study by Accenture, which explains that “sales reps are no longer trusted partners” for 92% of B2B buyers. This “disconnect” between the buyer and the sales rep therefore argues in favour of integrating a new player into the buying process: the B2B influencer.
Another argument in favour of the recognised and respected expert is the turbulence in the AdTech sector. In addition to the “natural” increase in competitive intensity on the web, the world of advertising will soon be turned upside down by the disappearance of third-party cookies, with all the consequences that we know about: difficulties in measuring marketing attribution and tagging the browsing behaviour of web users, advertising platforms will be less and less supplied with signals on the quality of audiences, little visibility on the number of times an ad is displayed for the same web user (risk of spamming), etc.
For all these reasons, B2B marketers will need to find levers that complement the traditional marketing and sales approach, and influencer marketing is a viable and relevant option.