If Forrester Research’s latest predictions for next year come true, B2B marketers will be facing continued technology disruption that will impact their roles. In its latest list of prognostications, Forrester identifies five areas of B2B marketing that will likely be impacted by martech.

More than 70% of B2B marketers will choose CDPs over data lakes

Marketers are frustrated with the current state of their customers data. It is siloed and inhibits effective multi-channel communications. Customer data platforms (CDPs) are gaining in popularity as a way to connect customer information across various systems.

More than 20% of marketing platforms will use AI to optimize midcycle engagement

Artificial intelligence (AI) is already aiding programmatic ad buying but will soon be incorporated into marketing automation and orchestration tools. This will dramatically improve marketers abilities to personalize and contextualize engagement across multiple channels at scale.

One-third of marketers will build ABM programs on their existing MAPs

As account-based marketing (ABM) becomes a standard component of B2B marketing plans, marketing automation platforms (MAPs) such as Eloqua, Marketo and Pardot will evolve to incorporate much of the functionality found in today’s stand-alone ABM tools.

Salesforce will dive into through-channel marketing

Many B2B companies sell through independent channel partners that need to be effectively integrated into the B2B marketers’ demand generation programs. There are at least 35 different tools available to address this need so the category is ripe for consolidation. According to Forrester, the most likely company to bring the pieces together for partner marketing team is Salesforce.

Customer advocacy momentum will revitalize gated communities

Business buyers who are used to using reviews on Amazon, Yelp and TripAdvisor for personal decisions are increasingly turning to platforms like TrustRadius and G2 Crowd to get unbiased input from their peers to reduce the risk of major purchasing decisions at work. B2B marketers must learn how to embrace customer advocacy in their programs.

Originally published at forbes.com

— Published in B2B MARKETING on October 25, 2018

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