Even before the pandemic, consumers were looking for convenience across most facets of their shopping experiences, but after the COVID-19 outbreak, the need for convenient and safe ways to shop have become essential. B2C marketers are very much aware of this demand, per data [infographic] from Iterable, which looks at the primary business concerns of B2B marketers as well as their top priorities in the coming year.
The largest share (28.6%) of the 500 B2C marketers surveyed from the US and UK, representing companies with at least 250 employees, cited the growing demand for convenience and safety as their primary business concern going into 2021. Indeed, this business concern was chosen by almost twice as many respondents as the next most-cited concern — brand empathy perception (14.6%).
Some marketers expressed concern about the acceleration of e-commerce (12.8%). However, research from WARC does show that global marketers are taking action to accommodate this shift to online shopping.
New Customer Acquisition Is a Top Priority
Acquiring new customers is top-of-mind for the majority of the B2C marketers surveyed, with close to two-thirds (65%) listing increasing new customer acquisition as one of their top 3 priorities for the year. Some 44% also say they will prioritize improving data management, while 41% will focus on optimizing marketing automation workflows.
Also listed as some of marketers’ top 3 priorities are increasing engagement (32%), increasing customer retention/loyalty (31%), better mapping of the customer lifecycle (31%) and improving content personalization (30%).
Martech Budgets Set to Increase
One potentially positive thing that has come out of the pandemic has been an acceleration of martech innovation for many industries. Investment in marketing technology for B2C companies looks to be increasing, at least for half (49%) of those surveyed, 18% of which have reported an increase in budget of more than 25%.
And, while marketers anticipate adding an array of marketing technologies to their stack, the most popular technologies include marketing automation platforms (39%), data warehouses (37%), customer data platforms (37%) and data analytics platforms (34%).
- More than 8 in 10 marketers say they are extremely (37%) or somewhat (46%) likely to include artificial intelligence (AI) in their 2021 marketing strategy;
- Some 85% of companies have already developed or are planning to develop in-house AI capabilities in the next 12 months;
- Email remains the most popular messaging channel (69%), although an increasing number of marketers plan to use mobile options such as SMS (49%) and push notifications (48%); and
- More than three-quarters (78%) of respondents plan to use zero-party data (data provided proactively and deliberately shared by a customer) in 2021.
About the Data: Findings are based on a survey of 500 B2C marketers based in the US (250) and the UK (250) from companies with at least 250 employees.