With new technology rolling out every single day and industries changing fast, it’s harder than ever for SMBs to stay ahead of the curve. Therefore, now as we round the corner on 2017, is the perfect time to take a look at planning your marketing strategy for next year.

Consider these proven growth oriented marketing tactics and what it takes to implement them for successful demand generation in 2018:

Customer Experience

For today’s customers, it’s the experience they crave and most want experiences that go beyond satisfaction to encompass every touch point in your buyer’s journey and extend throughout the lifecycle of your entire relationship. Knowing what your customers value most about your products and services is key to growth oriented marketing.

To gain edge, it’s critical to fully understand your customers. This makes creating “personas” or “ideal customer profiles” to use in marketing, important. It’s also important to remember that the profiles change over time so once created, set a calendar reminder to review and update your personas once a year.

Learn how to create buyer personas and use them to delight your customers.

Personal Brand

Similar to how reality TV made ordinary, non-actors and professions such as chefs into celebrities, social media has done the same for company executives and brand ambassadors. Now, there’s a driving need to create and maintain a personal brand. The c-suite in particular is in the limelight; people want to know the who behind your business. Marketers, be aware of this trend and help executives create a social media presence that works in conjunction with the overall growth oriented marketing plan to boost awareness and engagement with your brand.

This Inc. article, how to create a personal brand in five steps (and why everyone messes up on step number one), will help.

Visual Content Marketing

When people hear or read your messaging, they are likely to retain only 10%. However, if a relevant image is paired with the words, the average person will still retain 65% of your information three days later. That’s why visual content (images, videos, infographics etc) has always been on the A-list for B2C marketing tactics.

Now, according to Hubspot, B2B is fast catching the drift. The driver for this trend is the need to make every piece of content likable, shareable, and valuable to your audience. It also helps keep visitors on the page longer which delights Google and other search engines when it comes to SEO.

Here are all the stats you might ever need to know pertaining to the importance of visual content marketing!

Native Ads

Otherwise known as advertorials, native ads are pay-to-place content pieces. This strategy has been slowly gaining momentum and continues to prove worthy of consideration for B2B. The benefits lie in that the content you produce can add more value than traditional pay-per-click (PPC) or display banner ads which have only a tiny footprint to make a big impression.

Here are 12 thought provoking native ad ideas from Copyblogger to get you started.

Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing has been around for as long as we’ve worshiped sports heroes and movie starts. They talk we listen… and buy. For B2B marketing, the influencers aren’t necessarily celebrities, they’re simply experts in an industry who have developed thought leadership and an audience that heeds their advice. Some of them have relatively small followings but weld heavy influence and other have a much larger audience. It varies from industry to industry but finding befriending and partnering with one or two can significantly increase your reach and exposure.

To get started, read these tips to find influencers who already want to share and link to your content.

Using trending growth oriented marketing tactics such as these will help you gain an edge over your competition and extend your reach within an industry.  If you don’t have time to try all of these, it’s worth it to pick one or two and give it a shot. Happy marketing!

More business tips can be found on our blog. If you’re looking for copy and print solutions in the Athens, Cleburne, Belton, Tyler, Waco, Palestine or Corsicana areas, contact us, we’re here to help!