The past decade has seen a massive scale of transformation for China’s B2B marketing industry. With the spur of changes to traditional marketing methods previously aimed at B2C audiences, B2B marketers now harness the power of strategic digital marketing that helps amplify their brand to their core audiences, all while maintaining lead generation and conversion goals. While these approaches to digital marketing both gain their ground for their specific audiences, they require different strategies. These new strategies will directly address the needs of today’s growing digital markets and tech-savvy consumers.
What is digital transformation and why is it important for enterprises?
At the onset of 2010, what has been variably called the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0 went on to become a global trend. With the emergence of technologies and trends such as the Internet of Things, big data, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, virtual reality, non-digital or manual processes have increasingly been replaced with newer digital technologies which streamline user experiences and create more efficient production workflows for enterprises.
Digital transformation is the strategic integration of digital technologies into all aspects of a business: from operations to expenditures, to integrated solutions and product management. With these changes, opportunities in various industries have grown exponentially. Enterprises have begun to realise the importance of transforming their business models through solutions that will enhance their core competencies in the new digital economy.
Digital Transformation in China
Through effective digital strategies, businesses in China have brought about a phase of digital transformation that has been touted as the single largest contribution for its national economy’s growth, with projections running the scale of its impact to hit a plateau at around 2025. China has been at the forefront of transforming its businesses and maximising the potential of the adopted technologies by integrating a cohesive consumer experience across their production and delivery processes.
With the rise of China as the world’s second-largest economy, everything from products and services to supply-chain management systems had to become more streamlined to sustain the demand. These transformations in China have also paved the way for the rapid growth of online shopping and advertising. Online advertising in China, for example, has become the primary platform for sales and marketing. Mobile focused advertising is scaling up, and Chinese consumer behaviours have also evolved, with heightened expectations when it comes to user experience and a seamless customer journey.
B2B Digital Marketing
Out of the B2B digital transformation strategies that most enterprises adopt, let’s zoom into digital marketing and the focus on the marketing funnel. Most digital marketers are aware of the importance of building branding awareness among their prospective customers and driving these prospects down the marketing funnel, leveraging on various digital marketing strategies and tactics. One of the most important elements of digital marketing is to be able to produce content that resonates with their prospective customers at the respective stage of the marketing funnel.
In today’s world where content marketing is key in driving leads down the marketing funnel, studies have shown that only less than half of B2B enterprises are producing content that directly resonates with the consumer. An estimated 52% of companies are doing digital marketing without a calculated process to lead the prospective consumer to an intended call-to-action. Only 48% of B2B companies prioritise on producing quality content and assets aiming to drive the conversion rate of their prospective customers.
Additionally, to succeed in China, businesses need to leverage fully on in-market social media platforms such as WeChat, Weibo, Douyin. These highly popular super apps like WeChat are not simply “China’s Facebook”. They have a more complex ecosystem, demanding a strategy that is rooted in the values of the global Chinese consumer. WeChat has become so intrinsic in China’s society, that it is now key for brands to build solid customer relationships in the Chinese market.
Opportunities for the enterprise
With digital transformation being a national strategy, and industrial policies promoting the adoption of advancements in areas such as intelligent manufacturing, new energy, big data, and 5G, there is no way to go but up for China’s trillion-dollar economy.
At the moment, the global crisis brought about by the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic has fuelled the growth of digital marketing around the world and more so in China, with a substantial increase in technology adoption and usage rates. This continued growth and scale in the adoption of digital technologies is a crucial opportunity for enterprises to channel and process the conditions and create better products and services for a changing world.
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