11 B2B marketing trends to watch (or wish) for in 2012


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This isn’t exactly a list of predictions. Maybe it’s a wish list. In either case, here’s hoping that at least some of the 11 trends below are realized in B2B sales & marketing this year to help more companies accelerate their success.

11. B2B marketers will slowly get better at managing the full prospect pipeline, and operationalizing a pipeline discipline around how they generate and manage leads, as well as how they track their own success.

10. Marketers will increase the use of trial offers and “impulse buys” as a means of engaging prospects early in the sales process, and treating a superficial or entry product/service engagement as a lead.

9. Direct mail will make a comeback. The Realtors and credit card companies have retreated, and effective direct mail (for the right products) will once again take an active place in the marketing mix.

8. Partnering will increase, as companies look to work with complementary product and service providers to increase awareness, interest and penetration.

7. Bundling will increase as marketers get smarter about pre-packaging products and services based on customer needs and problem-solving opportunities.

6. Appointment-setting services will grow significantly, as more companies experiment with inside sales and early-pipeline lead generation beyond their own walls and with a higher-touch than tradition marketing-driven lead generation.

5. Marketers will accelerate the launch and testing of smarter, prospect-centric offers that more quickly provide value and create trust/credibility with the company.

4. Video usage among B2B companies will increase, with far more value-added content and fewer boring demos.

3. Mobile usage will increase, but B2B marketers will struggle to balance between advertising and value. Event-based mobile marketing will lead the charge for B2B.

2. Marketers will get smarter and better at creating content that engages and drives action among their prospective customers, especially early in the buying process.

1. Social selling will be the buzzword (or phrase) of the year, as B2B sales and marketing professionals alike jostle to find qualified leads from across the social Web.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Matt Heinz
Prolific author and nationally recognized, award-winning blogger, Matt Heinz is President and Founder of Heinz Marketing with 20 years of marketing, business development and sales experience from a variety of organizations and industries. He is a dynamic speaker, memorable not only for his keen insight and humor, but his actionable and motivating takeaways.Matt’s career focuses on consistently delivering measurable results with greater sales, revenue growth, product success and customer loyalty.


  1. Hi Matt, great article. I specificially wanted to comment on point 2: Marketers will get smarter and better at creating content that engages and drives action among their prospective customers, especially early in the buying process.

    Although marketers have made great strides when it comes to engaging and driving action among prospects, I agree, they need to go deeper. To create relationships with prospects, marketers need to focus on delivering content that is personalized and relevant to each individual prospect.

    They need to go beyond telling prospects about the latest and greatest products and deals, they must develop content that will make the customer understand how they might benefit from the product or how the product will make their lives easier. It's also important to continue to engage prospects after they become customers. Ongoing dialogue will turn prospects into customers and customers into long-term, loyal, advocates of your company and its products.

    Thanks for the post.
    Scott Zimmerman, president, http://www.televox.com

  2. In overview, B2B marketing trends has its always on the top of it, however even though it is a watch (or wish) for 2012 i will certainly bet for list #6, which is Appointment-setting service will grow. Lead generation companies will surely compete for being the one of the great. :tup


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