The B2B industry is constantly evolving. You can’t just start a business in 2020 and expect it to last 20 years without any changes. The world moves fast, and companies must keep up with the latest trends to stay relevant. This blog post will discuss 12 significant trends shaping the B2B industry over the next 5-10 years.!
1. Declining Baby Boomer Generation
One factor affecting the B2B industry in 2023 is the declining baby boomer generation (people born between 1946 and 1964). According to some predictions, by 2020, there will be 25% fewer people in this age group compared to 2015. The number of people aged 65+ worldwide is expected to double by 2060. This will significantly impact the B2B industry as some companies will fail because they rely too much on older workers who leave their jobs, for example, between 2023 and 2025.
2. The Proliferation of Virtual Assistants
In 2023, we expect the number of virtual assistants (like Siri, Alexa, etc.) to decline rapidly due to advancements in AI. By 2025, it is predicted that around 15% of all searches will be done without a screen using only voice commands. Companies relying on their website for sales will lose customers who prefer to use voice assistants instead of computers or mobile devices. In addition, virtual assistants are expected to become more advanced than they are today. The combined advances in AI and Virtual Reality will allow assistant companies to understand their users better than they do now. Companies will be able to track you based on your voice or appearance. For example, if you walk into a store while wearing Google Glass, the assistant will know that you are physically in the store and use that information to provide you with information relevant to your needs. Companies can also use virtual assistants for lead generation. The virtual assistant can carry on a conversation with potential clients and extract valuable data that is then passed on to marketers, who can use it to create customized campaigns for their target audience. According to predictions, by 2023, virtual assistants will be seamlessly integrated into almost every aspect of our lives.
3. The Rise of Chatbots
Chatbots are automated messengers who can help you automate your processes and carry out tasks without involving a human being. In the coming years, chatbots will become the standard communication channel between customers and businesses as it reduces human error and is an efficient way to automate processes. Additionally, Facebook Messenger has over 1 billion active users. This is the largest messaging platform on the planet. It makes sense for companies to use it as part of their lead generation campaign.
AI chatbots will take over marketing activities by 2023. By then, they will be able to carry out 90% of social media marketing tasks. It is also predicted that AI chatbots will be responsible for over 50% of eCommerce orders placed through Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, and Instagram. In addition, they will be more efficient than human marketers since AI chatbots can access the entire internet and monitor more conversations at once. AI chatbots will automate most of your social media marketing activities. Furthermore, they can be developed to complement your sales team by providing valuable information about the client, thus creating a win-win situation for both marketers and salespeople.
5. The Emergence of Virtual Reality in Marketing
As mentioned, virtual assistants are expected to use VR technology on their platforms to enable users to experience things before buying them. IKEA is an example of a business already using virtual reality to sell its products and services. They have created an “IKEA VR” platform where customers can experience what it would be like to sit on particular furniture before buying them. More companies will follow suit and use this technology to get ahead of their competitors in the next five years.
6. Video Marketing Will Gain Traction
By 2023, 80% of consumer internet traffic will be made up of video content. Most businesses are already using video marketing, but it will become even more dominant in the coming years as consumers are increasingly exposed to this type of content on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. This trend will also affect eCommerce companies expected to increase their video marketing efforts by 2020. In addition, the emergence of virtual assistants will push video marketing even further.
7. The Rise of Voice Search
By 2020, voice search will be dominant, and 60% of all searches will be made using voice. Businesses need to develop SEO strategies optimized for voice recognition software since Google’s algorithm already uses it to deliver search results. By 2020 most people will be using voice assistants like Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft Cortana to carry out search activities.
8. Augmented Reality Becomes Mainstream
Augmented reality is digital information overlaid in the real world, allowing you to interact with it. It has become essential to marketing strategies because it enables you to provide information about your products and services. An example is IKEA’s AR app, which lets customers experience how furniture would look in their homes before buying them. Augmented reality will become mainstream by 2020 as more companies invest heavily in this emerging technology.
9. Wearable Technology Will Grow Exponentially
Another technical advancement that is changing the way marketers operate is wearable technology. Wearable devices are small gadgets you can wear on your wrist, face, or neck. Some of these devices are “smartwatches,” with many functions other than telling time. These devices are expected to be big business by 2020 as they are faster, more accurate, and more secure than their predecessors. In addition, they allow for more processing power and better connectivity. These features will transform wearable gadgets into essential tools marketers use to carry out their activities. Some marketing companies are already using this technology to connect with consumers interested in their products and services.
10. Marketing Campaigns Will Get Personal
Marketing campaigns will become more immersive and personal in the coming years as marketers will create highly personalized customer experiences. Many businesses already use this trend worldwide, but it will evolve further in the next five years to make products and services stand out from their competitors. In addition, virtual assistants are expected to play a significant role in creating personalized communication strategies. Companies will spend more time analyzing their customers’ needs and preferences before developing highly targeted marketing campaigns. The internet of things (IoT) will also help marketers deliver targeted ads and promotions based on customer preferences. These changes in technology will make marketing much more personalized by 2020. In addition, due to faster and more affordable internet connections, marketers can streamline their marketing campaigns and make them more effective.
11. Data Security Becomes a Priority
The digital information business has made it necessary for companies to protect the data they collect from consumers. This has become an essential part of any business strategy because customers are more aware of the value of their information online. Many consumers are already wary about sharing their details with companies because privacy is a growing concern for millions worldwide. This has forced marketers to develop data security strategies to ensure that customer information remains secure even as it moves from its source to the company. Governments worldwide have also passed new laws that require companies to protect customer data from safeguarding individual rights and interests. Marketers will need to invest in security systems that guarantee transparency. All these changes are expected to result in more secure data management practices worldwide by 2023.
12. Businesses Will Follow Consumers to New Digital Platforms
Marketers who fail to keep up with the evolution of digital platforms will find it hard to connect with their customers in 2020. This is because most consumers regularly use social media and video streaming networks. In addition, many people use their mobile devices to communicate and connect with others online. This means marketers must pay close attention to digital trends to know where their customers are to deliver personalized content. Over the next five years, most consumers will continue shifting from traditional social and media networks to newer platforms such as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR). This will create new opportunities for marketers as they will have to promote products and services through these platforms. Some marketing companies have already started using virtual assistants to deliver relevant information to customers on demand.
These are some of the significant trends that digital marketers can expect in 2020. However, it is crucial to remember that all these changes will allow marketers to engage with customers personally. Companies will no longer need to put out generic adverts because they can tailor their marketing campaigns based on individual needs and wants.