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Nordic b2b report

The state of B2B sales and marketing in the Nordic countries and the Baltics

Introduction to the study of B2B marketing and sales in the region

The B2B markets are undergoing a transformation. Digital transformation, accelerated globalization, and changes in customer behavior are all drivers reshaping market dynamics and imposing new demands on businesses.

Changes in purchasing behavior, especially the growing significance of digital channels and social media, have made customers more demanding and shifted their expectations for service and value.
 

The Nordic and Baltic countries, known for their high levels of education, technological advancement, and innovation, play a crucial role in this transformation. Companies in the region face increasing competition from both local and global players, driving them to seek new ways to differentiate themselves, create value, and build sustainable competitive advantages.

This competitive landscape presents not only challenges but also opportunities. It drives companies to innovate, develop new business models and strategies, and leverage new technologies and tools in sales and marketing. The opportunity lies not only in survival but in building a hub for scalable growth in the Nordics and Baltics and advancing the region's economic prosperity.

Amidst this transformation and growing competition, there arose a need to better understand how B2B companies in the region are responding to these challenges and opportunities. How do they integrate their marketing and sales? How do they leverage CRM systems and automation? How do they use data in decision-making? And how do they strive to establish thought leadership in their markets?

This study was conducted in response to these questions. Its aim is to provide unique insights and valuable insights into the current state and future prospects of the Nordic and Baltic B2B markets. It seeks to identify key trends, challenges, and opportunities that will help us collectively develop the region's B2B markets and support its resilient companies in their efforts towards growth and success.

The findings and conclusions of this study are an important tool for companies looking to navigate this dynamic environment, build sustainable competitive advantages, and shape their futures.

The state of B2B sales and marketing in the Nordic and Baltic countries

How do business leaders in the Nordic countries and the Baltics comment on the state of B2B marketing and sales?

The first objective of the study is to provide a clear overview of the distribution of responses from participating companies regarding the prevailing states and objectives of B2B sales and marketing, as well as to outline how demographic factors such as country, company size, and role influence them.
 

This provides an interesting overview of the state of B2B marketing and sales in the Nordic countries and the Baltics, laying the groundwork for deeper analysis and helping to understand which themes emerge in the region's B2B companies.

How do leaders perceive the use of marketing, sales, and technology?

The change in purchasing behavior, especially the increasing significance of digital channels and social media, has made customers more demanding and altered their expectations for service and value.
 

The Nordic and Baltic countries, known for their high level of education, technological advancement, and innovation, are at the forefront of this change. Companies in the region face growing competition from both local and global players, driving them to seek new ways to differentiate themselves, create value, and build sustainable competitive advantages.
 

This competitive landscape is not only a challenge but also an opportunity. It drives companies to innovate, develop new business models and strategies, and leverage new technologies and tools in sales and marketing. The opportunity is not just to survive but to build a hub for scalable growth in the Nordics and Baltics and advance the region's economic prosperity.
 

Amidst this transformation and growing competition, there arose a need to better understand how B2B companies in the region are responding to these challenges and opportunities. How do they integrate their marketing and sales? How do they leverage CRM systems and automation? How do they use data in decision-making? And how do they strive to establish thought leadership in their markets?
 

This study was conducted in response to these questions. Its goal is to provide unique insights and valuable insights into the current state and future prospects of the Nordic and Baltic B2B markets. It aims to identify key trends, challenges, and opportunities that will enable us to collectively develop the region's B2B markets and support its resilient companies in their efforts towards growth and success.
 

The findings and conclusions of the study are an important tool for companies that want to navigate this dynamic environment, build sustainable competitive advantages, and shape their futures.

How integrated is marketing and sales?

Let's first examine the responses to the first question of the study, "How integrated are marketing and sales in your company?

How integrated are marketing and sales

How integrated are marketing and sales in your company?
 

  • Very integrated: 40.1%

  • Completely integrated: 38%

  • Somewhat integrated: 18.4%

  • Aware of each other: 3%

  • Don't get along: 0.6%
     

Nearly 80% of respondents feel that marketing and sales in their company are either "Very integrated" or "Completely integrated".

This highlights how many companies recognize the importance of close collaboration. However, 18.4% of companies perceive integration to be only "Somewhat" integrated, and a small percentage, 3.6%, report that either marketing and sales are only aware of each other or do not get along. This indicates that while many companies have taken steps towards closer collaboration, there is still room for improvement.
 

Let's quickly examine how the responses differ based on demographic factors: country, company size, and respondent's role.

How integrated are marketing and sales?

From the graph, we can see that the distribution of responses to the question "How integrated are marketing and sales in your company?" varies by country. Some countries show higher integration between sales and marketing, while respondents in other countries perceived integration to be lower.

Next, we will examine how the responses to the question "How integrated are marketing and sales in your company?" vary based on company size. We will analyze the distribution of responses and see if the company size affects how integrated sales and marketing are perceived to be.

How integrated are marketing and sales

From the graph, we can see that company size affects how integrated sales and marketing are perceived to be. Respondents from different company sizes assess the integration of sales and marketing differently, which may indicate that company size and resources impact the level of collaboration between sales and marketing.

Finally, let's examine how the distribution of responses varies based on the respondent's role. This will give us an understanding of whether individuals in different roles perceive the integration of sales and marketing differently.

How integrated is marketing and sales

From the graph, we can see that company size affects how integrated sales and marketing are perceived to be. Respondents from different company sizes assess the integration of sales and marketing differently, which may indicate that company size and resources impact the level of collaboration between sales and marketing.

Finally, let's examine how the distribution of responses varies based on the respondent's role. This will give us an understanding of whether individuals in different roles perceive the integration of sales and marketing differently.

Question 2: How is CRM utilized in the company?

Next, let's examine the question: "How is CRM used in your company?"

How is CRM used in the company

How is CRM used in your company?
 

  • Sales uses CRM well: 33.8%

  • CRM is not utilized as it could be: 25.4%

  • Both sales and marketing utilize CRM to the maximum: 21.3%

  • We do not have CRM: 11.7% (39 responses)

  • Sales uses CRM to the maximum: 7.8%


 

33.8% of companies feel that their sales team uses CRM well, but not necessarily to its maximum potential.
25.4% of companies have identified that their CRM system is not being utilized as effectively as it could be, leaving room for improvement.
 

21.3% of companies feel that both sales and marketing are utilizing CRM to its maximum potential, which is excellent.

A surprisingly large percentage, 11.7%, report that they do not have CRM at all, which could be a significant barrier to efficiency and growth.
 

Finally, 7.8% of companies feel that only sales utilizes CRM to its maximum potential.

This analysis demonstrates the importance of CRM systems for B2B companies and underscores the importance of effective utilization. Many companies still have opportunities to improve the usage of their CRM systems and leverage them more effectively.

Let's continue the analysis of how the responses to the question "How is CRM used in your company?" vary across different countries. This will give us an understanding of whether geographical factors influence the usage patterns of CRM systems in companies.

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B2B - Sales and Marketing Research

The usage patterns of CRM systems also vary according to the size of the company. Particularly, larger companies seem to have different usage patterns compared to smaller companies, which may be due to larger resources and different business needs.

Finally, let's examine how the responses vary based on the respondent's role.

How is CRM used in the company

From the responses, we can see that the distribution of answers to the question "How is CRM used in your company?" varies by country. Companies operating in different countries report different usage patterns of CRM systems, indicating that geographical and cultural factors influence the usage of CRM in companies.

Next, let's examine how the responses vary based on company size. This will help us understand if company size is related to the usage patterns of CRM.

How is CRM used in the company

Also, individuals in different roles have varying perspectives on how CRM is used in their companies.

Question 3: How are automations utilized in sales and marketing?

Question: "How are automations used for sales and marketing activities?" gives us an insight into how automations are utilized in sales and marketing operations across different companies.

How are automations used in sales and marketing

Question: How are automations used in sales and marketing activities?
 

  • Sales uses some automations and marketing uses some, but not much: 25.9%

  • We have tried some automations: 25.6%

  • We have not tried automations: 23.2%

  • Automations are crucial in sales and marketing: 17.5%

  • We do not want automated sales or marketing functions: 7.8%
     

The significance of automation is increasing in modern sales and marketing. 25.9% of respondents report that their company uses some automations, but not extensively yet. This may indicate that companies recognize the potential of automation but have not fully implemented it. 25.6% have tried some automations, showing interest and willingness to experiment.
 

On the other hand, it is concerning that 23.2% of companies have not tried automations at all. This may be a sign that these companies could fall behind in the competition as other companies effectively adopt automation.

Positively, 17.5% of companies consider automation to be crucial. These companies likely have already achieved significant benefits through automation, including improved efficiency and scalability.
 

Effective utilization of automation is essential for the success of modern B2B companies. It is important for companies that have not yet integrated automation into their operations to recognize its potential and invest in its adoption. Companies that have already adopted automation should evaluate how they can leverage it more effectively. Ignoring automation can put a company at a competitive disadvantage, while its effective adoption can unlock new growth opportunities.
 

Let's continue by analyzing how the responses to the question "How are automations used for sales and marketing activities?" vary across different countries. This will help us see if there are geographical differences in the use of automation in sales and marketing.

How are automations used in sales and marketing

As we can see from the graph, the use of automation in sales and marketing activities varies according to company size. Larger companies have more automation in use compared to smaller companies.
 

Finally, let's examine how the responses vary based on the respondent's role.

How are automations used in sales and marketing

From the graph, we can see that the distribution of responses to the question "How are automations used for sales and marketing activities?" varies by country. This may indicate that companies operating in different countries have different practices and capabilities in utilizing automation in sales and marketing activities.

Next, let's examine how the responses vary based on company size. This will give us an understanding of how company size is related to the usage of automation and provide further insights into how a company's resources and structure can affect the use of automation in sales and marketing.

How are automations used in sales and marketing

Respondents in different roles have varying perspectives on how automations are used in sales and marketing activities. This highlights the diversity of internal perspectives within the organization and can help understand how different departments perceive and utilize automation.

How do data and reporting guide decision-making?

Let's move on to the next question: "How do data and dashboards drive decision making?". This question helps us understand how data and dashboards influence decision-making in companies.
 

Let's begin by examining the distribution of responses to this question and then analyze how the responses vary based on different demographic factors such as country, company size, and the respondent's role.

How does data and reporting guide decision-making

Question: How do data and dashboards drive decision-making?
 

  • We collect data and use dashboards for specific projects and operations: 30.7%

  • We do not utilize data or dashboards enough: 25.2%

  • Different teams have their own dashboards and KPIs: 22.5%

  • Transparent real-time dashboards and KPIs guide all our operations: 13.4%

  • We hardly use data in decision-making and do not use dashboards: 8.2%
     

The importance of data and dashboards is increasing in the modern business environment. 30.7% of respondents report collecting data and using dashboards for specific projects and operations. This indicates that many companies recognize the value of data but still utilize it selectively.
 

25.2% of companies acknowledge that they do not utilize data or dashboards enough. This indicates that there is a lot of potential to enhance decision-making through data.
 

It is positive that 22.5% of companies mention that different teams have their own dashboards and KPIs, indicating the central role of data in these organizations. However, only 13.4% of companies report that transparent real-time dashboards and KPIs guide all their operations.
 

Effective utilization of data is crucial for the success of modern B2B companies. It is important for companies that have not yet integrated data-driven decision-making into their operations to recognize its potential and invest in its implementation.

For companies that have already adopted data-driven decision-making, it is important to evaluate how they can utilize it more effectively. Ignoring data can put a company at a competitive disadvantage, while its effective implementation can open up new growth opportunities.
 

Let's continue by analyzing how the responses to the question "How data and dashboards drive decision-making?" vary across different countries. This will give us an understanding of whether geographical differences influence how companies utilize data and dashboards in their decision-making.

How does data and reporting guide decision-making

The size of the company influences how data and dashboards are used in decision-making. Companies of different sizes have different perspectives and practices regarding the utilization of data.
 

Finally, let's examine how the responses vary based on the role of the respondent. This will give us an insight into whether individuals in different roles perceive the use of data and dashboards in decision-making differently.

How does data and reporting guide decision-making

We see that the distribution of responses to the question "How data and dashboards drive decision making?" varies by country. This suggests that geographical and potentially cultural differences may influence how companies use data and dashboards in their decision-making.
 

Now, let's examine how the responses vary based on the size of the company. This will help us understand if there is a correlation between the company size and the use of data and dashboards in decision-making.

How does data and reporting guide decision-making

Individuals in different roles have different perspectives on how data and dashboards drive decision-making. This information is valuable as it helps understand how various departments and roles within the organization perceive the utilization of data in decision-making.

Question 5: Are sales pipeline velocity, win rate, CAC, and CLTV measured in the company?

This question provides us with information on whether key sales and customer value metrics such as sales velocity, win rate, customer acquisition cost (CAC), and customer lifetime value (CLTV) are measured in the companies.
 

We will start by examining the distribution of responses to this question and then proceed to analyze how the responses vary based on different demographic factors such as country, company size, and the respondent's role.

Is the company measuring sales pipeline velocity, win rate, CAC, and CLTV?

Question: Are Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV measured in your company?
 

  • We measure some of these metrics, but not all: 33%

  • We have different sales and marketing KPIs: 24.9%

  • We don't have clear sales and marketing KPIs: 23.1%

  • We measure only one of these metrics: 9.9% (33 responses)

  • Yes, we measure all of them: 9% (30 responses)
     

Sales velocity, win rate, customer acquisition cost, and customer lifetime value are key metrics for B2B companies, and effectively tracking them can provide significant benefits.
 

33% of respondents report measuring some of these metrics, but not all. This suggests that many companies recognize the value of these metrics but do not yet fully utilize them.
 

24.9% of companies report having different sales and marketing KPIs, which may indicate that they measure other metrics essential to their business. However, 23.1% of companies do not have clear sales and marketing KPIs, which is concerning as it may indicate inadequate performance tracking and potential missed opportunities.
 

Effectively measuring sales velocity, win rate, customer acquisition cost, and customer lifetime value is crucial for the success of modern B2B companies. Companies that do not actively track these metrics may miss valuable insights and opportunities to improve their business. It is important for companies to recognize the potential of these metrics and integrate them into their daily decision-making.

Let's continue by analyzing how responses to the question "Are Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV measured?" vary across different countries. This will give us an understanding of whether geographical factors influence how companies measure key sales and customer value metrics.

Is the company measuring sales pipeline velocity, win rate, CAC, and CLTV

The distribution of responses according to the company's size indicates that companies of different sizes measure sales and customer value metrics differently. This information can help understand which company sizes are more inclined to track these metrics and where there may be opportunities for improvement.
 

Let's continue by examining how responses to the question "Are Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV measured?" vary according to the respondent's role. This will provide us with insights into how individuals in different roles perceive the importance of these sales and customer value metrics.

Is the company measuring sales pipeline velocity, win rate, CAC, and CLTV

We continue by analyzing how responses to the question "Are Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV measured?" vary based on the company's size. This will provide us with information on whether the company's size influences the measurement of these key sales and customer value metrics.

Mitataanko yrityksessä myyntiputken nopeutta, voittoprosenttia, CAC:ia ja CLTV:tä

This provides us with valuable information about how individuals in different roles approach the tracking of these metrics and can give insights into which roles have more awareness and emphasis on the use of these metrics.

Question 6: Is the company working to achieve a market leader position?

We move on to the last question, "Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?".
 

Let's first examine the distribution of responses to this question and then proceed to analyze how the responses vary based on different demographic factors such as country, company size, and the respondent's role.

Is the company working to achieve market leadership position

Question: Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?
 

Responses and percentages:

  • We need to work on it more: 35.7%

  • Yes, and we are on our way: 32.4%

  • Yes, and we have it: 14.7%

  • We do not actively pursue it: 9%

  • We should start working on it: 8.1%
     

Thought leadership is on the rise in the modern B2B business environment. It can provide companies with the opportunity to differentiate themselves from competitors, build trust, and strengthen their brand.
 

35.7% of respondents report that their company needs to work more on achieving thought leadership. This indicates that many companies recognize the importance of thought leadership but have not yet achieved their desired position.
 

32.4% of companies report that they are on their way to achieving thought leadership, and 14.7% feel they have already achieved it. Together, these figures indicate that a significant portion of companies are actively striving for thought leadership.
 

Thought leadership is valuable, and achieving it can be a long-term endeavor. However, it is important for companies to recognize its significance and invest in it. The absence of thought leadership may indicate that a company is not up to date with the latest industry trends and innovations. On the other hand, achieving thought leadership can open up new growth opportunities for a company and strengthen its position in the market.
 

Let's continue by examining how responses to the question "Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?" vary across different countries. This will give us an understanding of whether certain countries are more active in pursuing thought leadership.

Is the company working to achieve market leadership position

The distribution of responses according to the company's size indicates that companies of different sizes approach the pursuit of thought leadership differently. Therefore, certain company sizes are more inclined to pursue thought leadership.
 

We will continue by examining how the responses to the question "Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?" vary according to the respondent's role.

Does the company work to achieve a market leader position

Responses to the question "Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?" clearly vary across different countries.
 

Responses to the question "Does your company work to achieve thought leadership?" also vary based on the company's size.

Is the company working to achieve market leadership position

This gives us insights into how individuals in different roles perceive the pursuit of thought leadership within their company.

Thought Leadership vs. Metrics

Next, we will examine another combination analysis: "Thought Leadership vs. Metrics." This analysis focuses on whether companies that measure key sales and customer metrics such as Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV are also more committed to pursuing thought leadership.
 

Here, we conducted a cross-tabulation of responses to these two questions and visualized the results on a heat map. This will help us understand how these two factors are related within companies.

Thought Leadership vs. Metrics

This heat map illustrates the percentage distribution of responses between the pursuit of thought leadership and the measurement of key sales and customer metrics. Each cell represents the percentage of companies that have provided a specific combination of responses to these two questions.
 

This visualization helps understand how the pursuit of thought leadership correlates with the measurement of key sales and customer metrics.
 

The analysis revealed that companies that measure key sales and customer metrics are also more committed to pursuing thought leadership.

Conclusions from the combination analysis "Thought Leadership vs. Metrics":

  1. Use of Metrics and Thought Leadership: The analysis indicates that companies actively measuring key sales and customer metrics such as Sales Velocity, Win rate, CAC, and CLTV also appear to be more committed to pursuing thought leadership. This suggests that a strategic framework of metrics and goal orientation may be associated with the pursuit of thought leadership.
     

  2. Importance of Strategic Focus: Companies investing in metric tracking and thought leadership may demonstrate stronger strategic focus and market orientation, potentially providing a competitive advantage.
     

  3. Opportunities for Development: Companies not yet measuring these key metrics and not pursuing thought leadership may find significant opportunities for development. Norders Ltd. can offer consulting services to support these companies.
     

  4. Innovation and Leadership: Pursuing thought leadership and using metrics can both be signs of a company's innovativeness and desire to be a leader in its field.
     

These conclusions provide further insights into how companies integrate a strategic framework of metrics and thought leadership.

Conclusions and Strategic Recommendations

In this B2B study of the Nordic and Baltic regions, we analyzed companies' responses to various questions regarding marketing and sales integration, CRM and automation usage, the utilization of metrics in decision-making, and the pursuit of thought leadership. We also examined how these responses varied based on demographic factors such as country, company size, and respondent role.
 

Additionally, we conducted combination analyses to understand how different factors relate to each other and the significance of these connections for companies' strategies and operations.
 

The study revealed significant connections between marketing and sales integration, the pursuit of thought leadership, and the use of metrics. Demographic factors such as country, company size, and role influenced companies' responses and perspectives.

Summary:

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Marketing and Sales Integration vs. Thought Leadership

Lastly, let's examine whether companies where marketing and sales are closely integrated are more inclined to pursue thought leadership.
 

We conducted a cross-tabulation between the responses to these two questions and visualized the results in a heatmap. This way, we obtain a clear picture of how the responses to these two questions are related to each other.

Marketing and Sales Integration vs. Thought Leadership

The heatmap illustrates the percentage distribution of responses between marketing and sales integration and the pursuit of thought leadership. Each cell corresponds to the percentage of companies that have provided a specific combination of responses to these two questions.
 

This visualization helps understand how the integration of marketing and sales relates to companies' efforts to achieve thought leadership.
 

The combination analysis indicated that more tightly integrated marketing and sales functions correlate with the pursuit of thought leadership.

Based on the combination analysis, we can draw the following conclusions:

  1. Integration and Thought Leadership: The analysis indicates that companies reporting tight integration between marketing and sales also appear to be more committed to pursuing thought leadership. This may suggest that collaboration between marketing and sales lays the groundwork for achieving thought leadership and is pivotal in the company's strategy.
     

  2. No Integration, No Thought Leadership: Similarly, companies that have not tightly integrated marketing and sales seem to be less interested in pursuing thought leadership. This may indicate that in these companies, strategic focus and resources may be directed elsewhere.
     

  3. Strategic Significance: The combination analysis highlights the strategic significance of integration and thought leadership for companies. Companies investing in these areas may be better equipped to address market challenges and capitalize on opportunities.

How do different questions influence each other?

  • Integration and Strategy: Tight integration between marketing and sales appears to be associated with the pursuit of thought leadership and active use of metrics. Companies that invest in these areas may be better equipped to handle market challenges and growth.
     

  • Demographic Differences: Different countries, company sizes, and roles within companies seem to have varying attitudes toward the topics in question. This provides an opportunity for a tailored approach and service offering to different segments.
     

  • Opportunities for Development: Companies that have not yet adopted advanced practices and strategies may benefit from consulting and support services. Norders Oy has the opportunity to help these companies develop and gain a competitive advantage.
     

  • Innovation and Competitive Advantage: Pursuing thought leadership and using metrics are signs of a company's innovativeness and desire to be a leader in its field. Understanding and leveraging these factors can help Norders Oy provide value and stand out in the market.

Conclusions:

1. Identifying Your Own Goals and Challenges:
 

To begin developing a continuously iterating and real-time data-updated go-to-market strategy, it is crucial to identify your own business goals and challenges. This can be achieved by deepening the analysis of customers, markets, and your own strengths and weaknesses. Discussions with the team and stakeholders, SWOT analysis, and benchmarking are good tools to start with.
 

2. Refined Customer Segmentation:
 

To identify potential customer groups and develop specific strategies and services for these segments, we recommend leveraging data from market research, customer feedback, and analytics. Customer journey mapping and persona workshops can help understand customer needs and expectations more deeply.
 

3. Content Strategy:
 

The results and conclusions of the research provide valuable insights into which topics are relevant to your target audience. This information can be used to create a content strategy that addresses customer needs at different stages of the purchasing journey. To build thought leadership, focus on creating in-depth and knowledgeable content that highlights your company's expertise and insights.
 

4. Further Research:
 

To deepen understanding of specific topics and issues, consider conducting your own further research. For example, you could conduct in-depth interviews or surveys with specific segments. The research questions and their answers can serve as a good basis for refining your own market research. Analyze the responses and identify topics that generated the most interest or had the most disagreements. These topics can be good starting points for further research.

The recommended steps for companies in the region based on the research are as follows:

For growth and SME sector B2B companies in the Nordic and Baltic region, the following recommendations are suggested:
 

  • Investment in Integration and Metric Utilization: Close integration between marketing and sales, along with active utilization of key metrics, correlates with the pursuit of thought leadership and can provide a competitive advantage.
     

  • Focus on Thought Leadership: Pursuing thought leadership correlates with innovation and strategic focus. Companies should develop and communicate their expertise in their respective fields.
     

  • Tailored Approach: There are differences in perspectives and practices among countries and companies of different sizes. Tailoring services and communication to different segments is crucial.

Strategic Recommendations:

1. Evaluate and Improve Practices: Companies should assess their current marketing and sales practices, identify areas for improvement, and invest in enhancements.
 

2. Identify and Exploit Opportunities: Companies should identify opportunities within their area of operation and develop strategies and actions to capitalize on them.
 

3. Invest in Though Leadership and Metrics: Building thought leadership and utilizing metrics are crucial factors for success.

B2B companies should:

This research was conducted by Norders Oy.
 

Norders is the #1 RevOps agency in the Nordics, with a mission to be the most effective B2B sales and marketing partner in the Nordics.
 

Learn more about Norders at norders.fi
 

How can your company start its own RevOps revolution? Schedule a free consultation with a Norders RevOps specialist at norders.fi/demo

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