As a busy B2B tech marketer, finding the time to expand your knowledge can be a challenge. So here, we’ve summarised 5 of the top research papers/thought-leadership pieces we’ve seen, and which have informed our thinking, in 2019. These include:
1. Gartner’s 2020 and beyond predictions
According to Gartner, we are entering an era in which technology is going to re-define what it is to be human. In this recent release, Gartner unveils its top predictions for IT organisations and users in 2020 and beyond. “Technology, and its applications, are poised to affect every aspect of what we call humanity,” it says. Gartner predicts that by 2023, 30% of IT organisations will extend BYOD policies with “bring your own enhancement” (BYOE) to address augmented humans in the workforce, and that in the same year, the number of people with disabilities employed will triple due to AI and emerging technologies reducing barriers to access.
2. The Challenger Customer
If you haven’t already done so, we highly suggest picking up a copy of The Challenger Customer, by Brent Adamson et al., which has very much underpinned our approach to B2B tech marketing this year.
The sequel to The Challenger Sale, this book explores the notion of ‘buying committees’, explaining that complex B2B deals increasingly require consensus among a wide range of players across the organisation. According to research by the authors, only a very specific type of customer stakeholder has the credibility, persuasive skill, and will to effectively challenge his or her colleagues to pursue anything more ambitious than the status quo – and this is who you should be targeting.
3. Forrester’s report on the importance of investing in customer experience
We all know the importance of investing in the customer experience – but this great report from Forrester, which was commissioned by Adobe earlier in the year, gives it some great financial context. It suggests that experience-driven businesses grew their revenue 1.4x faster and increased their customer lifetime value 1.6x more than other companies in the past year. It also suggests that less than a third of businesses can successfully claim to be “experience-driven” – which presents a great opportunity when it comes to tech B2B marketing.
4. KPMG’s report: Keeping us up at night: the big issues facing business leaders in 2019
Early this year, KPMG engaged a broad spectrum of C-level leaders from a diversity of industries to think about the main issues keeping them up at night. 220 leaders – some with fewer than 50 employees, and some running companies with revenues of over $1 billion a year – took time out to respond. Most were from the private sector, but the public sector is represented as well. The result is an objective, dispassionate, and interesting ‘Top 10’ of the most significant issues facing Australia’s leaders in 2019, and it’s a great read for us as B2B marketers.
5. Deloitte’s report: From employee experience to human experience: 2019 Human Capital Trends survey
The importance of focusing on improving the employee experience is no new thing – particularly given the impact which happy employees can have on a company’s overall productivity and effectiveness. One of the biggest challenges that Deloitte identified in this year’s Human Capital Trends survey in 2019 is the need to focus on and further improve this employee experience. 84% percent of survey respondents rated this issue important, and 28% identified it as one of the three most urgent issues facing their organisation in 2019. For us, as tech marketers, a particularly interesting finding was that only 38% of employees are satisfied with the tools and technology they use at work.