With the new year comes loads of articles offering tips, tricks and trends you need to follow when executing your new marketing plan. (Or else!) It can be overwhelming.
Which is why we bring you our 4 Pillars of B2B Marketing for 2024. Read and digest these four guiding principles and you’ll be all but covered for the year. That is to say, these are your marketing meat and potatoes; everything else is garnish.
A quick note: IMA specializes in digital marketing for innovative B2B brands. This content is written for, and on behalf of, our clients. If you operate in the B2C world, the following will likely be less relevant to you. Apologies.
1. Harness the power of Employee Influencers
Employees are the body and soul of any company. If you’re part of a great company and brand, you know it; and your staff is likely proud to shout your praises from the rooftops. (Or, even better: from their LinkedIn pages.) Harness the exuberance — and subject-matter expertise — of your staff, and put it to work on your social channels. Employee Influencers are an underleveraged power in modern social. As David Ford, Global Chief Communications Officer at Ogilvy, puts it: “[In 2024] we’ll see more brands leveraging their employees’ influence, gaining consumer trust through their employees’ unique, insightful perspectives and genuine support for the brand and business.”
2. Choose quality over quantity
One of the early results of the Gen AI Era is brands producing more content, more quickly. But much of that content lacks originality and ingenuity (since AI’s essential function is to calculate data patterns in existing text and remix it into “new” material). Consumers are already growing weary of the onslaught. Ad fatigue is quickly increasing. The first lesson here? That there is no shortcut to great content. The second lesson? That relevance and personalization have never been more important to your audiences. The wise marketer will choose to spend 10 hours on one piece of compelling, relevant, meaningful content, rather than spend that same amount of time to push out two pieces of banal white noise. Quality matters.
3. Leverage AI to improve content performance
While we should avoid using Gen AI to create content from scratch (derivative drivel that annoys audiences and damages search strategy), certain Gen AI tools can support the back end of the process. LinkedIn’s “Rewrite with AI” tool, for example, can help deliver a performance boost to original content. The AI analyzes vast amounts of LinkedIn-specific data to make suggestions on how to improve audience engagement. Similarly, Meta’s “AI Sandbox” taps platform-specific data to make suggestions for both copy and image usage on Facebook and Instagram. But these tools are new. We recommend using them to generate “alternative” social messaging, and A/B split testing that against your original content.
4. Put your brand first
Another unfortunate side-effect of the Gen AI Era is an increasing lack of trust in marketing messages. Per Gartner: “As AI becomes more prevalent in marketing, addressing consumer trust and confidence issues will be a significant challenge. By 2027, 20% of brands will lean into positioning and differentiation.” That 20% number should be higher — since brand positioning and differentiation not only help you stand apart, but engender greater trust in your brand. As Neil Patel explains: “What makes Jordan shoes special isn’t the quality of the shoes. There are a lot of high-quality shoes. It’s the brand! Technology has made it easier to copy the competition. But the one thing that can separate you is your brand.” (Of course, properly evolving a brand in the modern era is harder than it sounds.)
At IMA, we coined the term “HOP,” which is an acronym for High-performing Organic Post. This refers to an organic LinkedIn post that performs at one- or two-standard deviations above the mean (for both reach and engagements). When this happens, you can boost that post to a relevant targeted audience and earn a very strong ROI. We’ve tested this countless times and it delivers at a near-100% rate. If you’d like to learn more about transforming your organic opportunities into high-performing LinkedIn campaigns, reach out to us via the form below.
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