Facing a need to engage B2B buyers with effective online content while also dealing with an uncertain economy and limited resources, B2B marketers are exploring the promises of generative AI.
But while Gen AI is a formidable tool, it also presents challenges that marketers must overcome, Forrester Research Inc. says in two new reports.
“Marketers need content to engage audiences across the customer lifecycle,” Forrester says in the report, “Generative AI Ignites Change in B2B Content,” by principal analyst Lisa Gately and other analysts. “However, changing buyer dynamics make this a complex undertaking. B2B buyers are exerting more control over their experience, with self-guided interactions making up 51% of the total types of buyer interaction.”
Generative AI in B2B marketing
Forrester also notes that 65% of B2B marketers say their companies are investigating, experimenting with, or already using AI to plan and produce content. The plethora of available AI tools, however, requires them to test multiple versions while capabilities and features “change at lightning speed,” Forrester says.
Those tools provide many advantages, Forrester notes in the report, “Generative AI: What It Means For B2B Marketing,” including:
- Generative AI tools help marketers think beyond personalizing to verticalizing, repurposing, repackaging, and refreshing content to meet customers’ needs. Marketers can move faster to create variations of content, and leverage real-time, AI-powered search to find assets or content components by querying a model fine-tuned on their internal data.
- Generative AI expands access to data, allowing non-technical marketers to perform analysis and generate insights using natural language. Gen AI can extract information from massive amounts of unstructured data — such as customers’ digital and recorded human interactions — that often hasn’t been used by marketers to understand buying behavior.
- From helping marketers move past the blank page or conveying ideas when language is a challenge, to automating and scaling content production processes, Gen AI opens new possibilities.
Building effective AI strategies
To build effective AI strategies for developing content, Forrester advises B2B companies to align content strategy and use the same AI tools among product, marketing and sales teams.
“Organizations with low content maturity or a fragmented approach won’t achieve the intended impact when using Generative AI,” it says.
Forrester advises companies to “develop a clear view of your marketing organization’s content competencies and data management capabilities before adopting generative AI. Like any other form of automation, generative AI will amplify and accelerate what is happening now.”
Forrester also advises businesses to engage senior executives and content team members by identifying how generative AI can solve business problems. For example: using AI across multiple stages of the content lifecycle repurpose, refresh and personalize it.
B2B marketers should also use AI to differentiate from the competition with content unique to their organization.
“Stories about customer, expert, or partner experiences … and unique perspectives based on a company’s data or offerings will make content stand out by being specific and authentic,” Forrester says.
Paul Demery is a freelance writer specializing in ecommerce trends. He is based in Savannah, Georgia. Follow him on Twitter @pdemery.
Sign up for a complimentary subscription to Digital Commerce 360 B2B News, published 4x/week. It covers technology and business trends in the growing B2B ecommerce industry.
Follow us on LinkedIn and be the first to know when we publish Digital Commerce 360 B2B News content.Favorite