Survey Finds Market Service Providers Are Heavy Supporters of BTB Customers

Eighty-eight percent of marketing service providers support business-to-business customers.

This was key finding from a recent survey of MSPs attending the Alterian Annual Think Tank Summit that was held last month in Chicago. More than 120 executives from leading MSPs attended the event and spoke their minds on the rise of BTB marketing, the challenges of integrating e-mail with offline marketing and how they are expanding their opportunity within the financial services market.

According to the survey, 88 percent of 33 MSP executives polled stated they have expanded their services to include BTB marketing. Approximately 76 percent of this group plan to increase their emphasis on BTB services.

MSPs also cited several challenges limiting the success of BTB marketing. Topping the list is analytics. Data acquisition, database management, lead management and tracking ROI also present major obstacles, the survey found.

The Chicago-based Alterian survey also focused on broader issues facing MSPs and their clients.

While 90 percent of 29 MSP representatives surveyed said their clients use e-mail for customer retention and cross-selling, 72 percent stated their clients do so for customer acquisition, and 48 percent reported their clients use e-mail for transactional communications. About 50 percent confirmed that e-mail is part of a combined online and offline tactical mix, while only 14 percent of marketers said they use e-mail as a stand-alone effort.

But while e-mail use is growing, nearly half of MSPs surveyed said their clients face significant challenges. These include making online channels targeted and addressable at the individual level, integrating online marketing together with the customer database and offline channels, complying with privacy and regulatory concerns and managing individual communication preferences.

A third poll of 46 MSP representatives focused on the financial services market. Approximately 72 percent of MSPs surveyed said they intend to increase their emphasis on financial services clients within the next 12 to 24 months. The largest market being served is insurance, with 67 percent of MSPs confirming clients in this segment. Insurance was followed closely by retail banking, bank cards and consumer lending.

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