By Ricardo Rocha, Marketing & Communications Director at Noesis
The last two years represented, for Marketing, namely B2B, a radical change of paradigm and praxis. Digital Transformation definitely reached the Marketing departments of companies. Suddenly and quickly, in a mixed movement of innovation, adaptation, and survival. I'm not talking about "Digital Marketing," a category where everything fits. Generally speaking, Digital has long since entered the mix and strategy of any B2B marketer, and rightly so. I'm talking specifically about new channels or strategies that, already available in the marketers' "menu," had a residual level of adoption.
As we all know, the context we live in has forced organizations to close their offices, adapt ways of working, adjust processes, change business models, and Marketing was forced to follow. It was necessary to adopt new methods, channels, approaches, and tactics, heavily based on technology. Strategies based on physical channels, face-to-face approaches were abandoned. No more fairs, congresses, and events, no more trade visits, no more flyers, and brochures. New challenges faced all marketers: How to stay close to customers? How to remain relevant? How to reach the target audiences?
With this goal - not to lose touch and maintain brand awareness and visibility with their audiences - digital tools such as webinars, podcasts, and broadcasts began to gain greater prominence. It was time to adapt marketing plans, readjust budgets, try new strategies, and bet (even more) on content.
In this context, content has never made more sense than it does now. B2B Marketing must increasingly bet on the production of content. Relevant content, sharing information and knowledge, taking advantage of all the potential of these channels and tools.
The truth is that in less than a year, podcasts, webinars, and broadcasts started to be exponentially consumed and to be part of the daily life of many of us as content consumers. It's no longer just Millenials or Generation Z who consume YouTube and podcasts.
This is a window of opportunity for B2B Marketing.
Looking at the current organizational landscape, we see that some organizations have implemented these communication strategies in the last 12 months. There are more and more corporate podcasts, social media lives, talks, interviews, and webinars. Not to mention the virtual events recorded in television studios, which also represent a new opportunity and line of business for events companies and audiovisual production companies, are highly penalized with the interruption of physical events, concerts, and shows.
And we're not only talking about the business side of things but also in terms of internal communication and employer branding. These were tools that began to be used to enhance internal communication strategies in organizations. Companies that implemented live sessions for employees, with their CEOs or Top Management speaking directly to employees (confined in their homes), virtual internal events, with large almost "television" productions, talk show style, parties with bands and DJs streaming to everyone's homes, corporate kick-offs and even team buildings were held through the screen.
The most pioneering and disruptive organizations embraced these new channels by putting them at the center of their Marketing and Communication strategies, even taking advantage of the pandemic moment and empty offices to reconvert some of these spaces and create their own "studio."
Looking ahead to 2022, the big question is: will these new digital tools continue to be indispensable in a hybrid world? Absolutely!
We are living in one of the most transformational periods of our history, and it's time to look to the future and not to the models of the past.
We need to evolve to continue to capitalize on this digital transformation in Marketing. It's time to put all the analytics to work, analyze results, understand what worked and what didn't work, and, the "key factor" of success, manage to reconcile these two "worlds" in the best way possible.
Finding the right formula to, through these tools, create a context where face-to-face and remote can be complementary. Could the traditional face-to-face B2B event be broadcasted live-stream to a broader audience, for example?
Creativity is required! And, always, bet on rich and relevant content. This will be the key to success. Just like two years ago, we are entering a new phase, and those who cannot readapt again will inevitably be left behind.