B2B Tech Tuesday is our weekly check-in here at Spreckley, where we share all the most interesting and useful B2B and enterprise technology news, innovations and trends.
This week, we look at the latest thoughts on B2B tech and the “Human Enterprise”, the value of AI to B2B tech companies, the struggle in the B2B marketing community to produce enough good content amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the flourishing B2B startup scene over in India right now.
B2B Technology and the “Human Enterprise”
Business and enterprise technology is all too often discussed in the context of it ‘driving’ digital transformation in companies. However, a salient piece over on the Harvard Business Review this month points out that B2B tech should ‘enable’ change, not drive it.
Authors Dan Higgins and Nicola Morini Bianzino argue that, while “most organizations are voraciously evaluating existing and future technologies to see if they’ll be able to deliver the innovation at scale that they’ll need to survive and thrive” it is always people and not technology itself that should be central to such transformation efforts.
Their approach – which is one of people-led transformation aided by technology – is a hugely appealing reminder to any B2B tech marketeer that: “Businesses that want to continue to deliver value and help ensure enterprise resiliency in this time of rapid change should aim to become Human Enterprises — putting humans and their needs at the center of their strategies, values, processes, and operations, with technology serving as an enabler rather than a driver of change.”
How AI is Boosting B2B Tech
Artificial Intelligence, or AI, is perhaps one of the biggest B2B tech buzzwords in circulation right now, yet all too often phrases such as ‘powered by AI’ are used without a very clear explanation.
Forbes writer Bernard Marr makes a very clear case that “AI is as relevant to a B2B company as it is to a B2C company” and that it is “important for every B2B company to evaluate the ways AI can help them produce better products, provide better services, and improve business processes.”
Not only that, Marr backs up his argument with a clear range of concrete and powerful examples of the ways in which AI is currently helping B2B companies, from producing better products, services and business processes through to some great examples of the use of AI in manufacturing, marketing, HR, finance and more.
Those readers wanting a deeper dive would be well advised to check out Marr’s new book, The Intelligence Revolution: Transforming Your Business With AI.
B2B Content and Brand Storytelling
Next up, we know at Spreckley that ‘content is king’, as we never tire of reminding our B2B tech clients of the value of engaging, informative brand storytelling. Yet it seems that many B2B marketers are struggling to produce enough content amid the pandemic, according to this latest article by reporter John Glenday over at The Drum.
“The pandemic has pushed the B2B content pipeline to the limit, a new study has found,” Glenday reports, adding that: “content marketing remains a challenge to many business-to-business (B2B) marketers.”
This is according to a new survey by Finite – a body representing the global B2B technology marketing community – that claims “35% of B2B marketers struggled to produce enough content to reach and engage with audiences in 2020.”
Of course, the answer is not always just about producing more content, but about producing the right kind of content that meets the business objectives of your client. On which point, we strongly agree with Dataquest’s recent assertion that, while “some B2B tech brands think storytelling is for B2C companies… without a single consistent story to tell, it is nearly impossible to stand out.”
Finding and telling that story for any B2B tech brand is vital, and that story “should be the same across every method of communication, from ads, email, and social media to trade shows, fine print, and even business cards (or email signatures in today’s world). People buy from people and relate to emotions, values, and ethics – same for a food processing company as for a processor making giant!”
B2B Tech Startups Flourishing in India
Finally, in what has been (to put it mildly) something of a challenging year for business, it’s great to read over on CXO Today that B2B tech startups are noticeably on the rise in India.
There are over 4,200 B2B tech startups in India, 63% of which are working on enterprise technology in the BFSI, healthcare, retail and automotive verticals according to a recent report by NetApp and Zinnov.
“B2B tech startups are now taking the country by storm,” writes editor Sohini Bagchi. “Despite the pandemic, there has been a lot of momentum in the country’s tech startup ecosystem in recent months.”
Here at Spreckley, we certainly look forward to hearing much more about the innovation and growing B2B tech scene in India over the coming months.