Top 5 Takeaways from SiriusDecisions Summit

SiriusDecisions is a leading B2B research and advisory firm. Founded in 2001, they’ve become the go-to for B2B companies looking to adjust their business and marketing strategies to grow in their space.

In 2006, they started hosting the SiriusDecisions Summit. The Summit is an annual event where B2B leaders from around the world gather to discuss market trends and ideas. This year, we at DemandZEN were able to attend. Here are our top 5 takeaways.

1. Account-Based Marketing isn’t going anywhere

SiriusDecisions - ABM

Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is hotter than ever. For those that don’t know, ABM is the practice of targeting contacts in specific accounts and tailoring your campaigns to the needs of those accounts versus general lead marketing.

At SiriusDecisions Summit this year, there was an entire track dedicated to ABM best practices, ABM technology, and ABM strategies. And, I have to be honest: with the data and technology at our fingertips, we’re now able to do some creepy (read: incredible) things in our marketing efforts.

Account-based marketing is here to stay. Companies across a wide variety of verticals are consistently reporting greater returns with smaller lead pools. That’s not to say traditional lead generation campaigns are not still important. You need to develop your ABM lists, and to see the best results you should work to do that organically, not through list buying.

2. Nurture programs need to evolve

SiriusDecisions - Nurture Evolution

These days, we can track every interaction that someone takes. We use tools that enable us to connect their online behavior (both on our web properties and off) to their offline behavior, and target them across various platforms (not just email).

On the SiriusDecisions marketplace floor, there were at least a dozen vendors offering innovative ways to personalize your marketing efforts.

The traditional email nurture is finally on its way out. It’s not just about your prospect’s inbox anymore. It’s about talking to them, wherever they are, and giving them the right message at the right stage. Instead of simple drip campaigns, you should combine action-based email flows with targeted ad campaigns across various applications and platforms, and cadence-based sales outreach that combines different touches with a variety of different delivery methods (i.e. phone, text, and social).

3. The SiriusDecisions “Demand Unit” is as important as ever

SiriusDecisions - Demand Unit

The Demand Unit is comprised of all of the people involved in the buying process. They may be made up of different departments who will be using the product or service, or various people in one department. Another way to put it is account based selling vs selling to a lead. The Demand Unit is a key piece of SiriusDecisions’ Demand Unit Waterfall.

As the Demand Unit suggests, B2B sales don’t occur between you and just one person. There are usually a few (or a mob) of people involved in the decision-making process who all come into play at some point. As technology continues to evolve, more people will be involved in the buying process, not fewer.

To be successful, your strategy must focus on the fact that you’re selling to a group of people with different pain points and needs, not just an individual. You must have messaging, content, and conversion support for each member of the unit at each stage.

4. Your tech stack needs an upgrade

SiriusDecisions - Martech Stack

There is a benefit to keeping your martech stack as lean as possible, but not at the expense of your marketing success. Martech (marketing technology) is on the rise. The new technology available to marketing teams today is advancing in leaps and bounds. With new SaaS (software as a service) programs, there’s virtually no limit to what you can do.

Third party data sources can augment your lead data and activity data by directly hooking into your CRM or marketing automation platform. You can run targeted campaigns across various platforms such as Adwords, Facebook, and Reddit based on this information. You can even run tactile marketing campaigns by hooking a SaaS platform into your current stack that will automatically include personalized offline touches with online behavior and activity in your CRM.

Marketers can now create highly customized videos by hooking tools like VidYard directly into your CRM or marketing automation platform. Done right, you’ll delight and intrigue prospects and customers in a way that standard still ads and videos just can’t do.

Less is usually more. But sometimes, more is more.

5. Content is still king

SiriusDecisions - Content is King

Content still reigns supreme. Why? People are consuming it faster than ever. Maximizing the efficiency of your content engine is, without fail, one of the most important pieces of marketing today. With the internet at our fingertips no matter where we are, you can’t continue to spoon-feed people content when they want to drink out of the fire house.

A core piece of your marketing efforts needs to be continuously creating —and actively promoting— a variety of content pieces from blogs to white papers to infographics, videos, and eBooks. Recycling content will help you get more mileage out of your work, but it’s also about producing a steady stream of new assets. Make sure you have both wheels of the content engine up and running smoothly.

If you want to talk about how to take your marketing strategy to the next level, reach out today. We’d love to help.