83% of B2B marketers admit their biggest challenge is creating personalized content that resonates with individual prospects.
But what’s the big deal? Is personalization really that important?
The answer is yes.
Personalizing the B2B buying experience not only transforms a usually cold, robotic transaction into a human exchange, but it also speeds up what tends to be a longer-than-average sales cycle.
However, it’s easy for B2B sellers to think that their prospects don’t buy with the same emotional gusto that B2C consumers do, therefore making personalization somewhat redundant.
Surely having a website where dozens of prospects can land at any moment means it’s better to have a generic approach and create a “one-size-fits-all” strategy?
But, while B2B buyers are more logical and goal-oriented than consumers as a whole, they still seek out personalized experiences.
Thankfully, B2B tech companies are beginning to wise up to this.
Before we dig in, let’s quickly recap what personalization means.
It’s essentially meeting a prospect’s needs more effectively and efficiently by serving them content based on their previous behaviors and interactions with a brand. As a result, B2B tech companies will see an increase in customer satisfaction levels and a boost in repeat visits.
The Benefits of Personalization in B2B Tech Marketing
- Relevant messaging – personalization helps you to send the right message and the right content to the right customer (for example, someone who has just learned about your product is less likely to be in a buying mindset than someone who is well aware that they need what you’re offering but are now deciding between you and your competitors)
- Perfect timing – not only does personalization help you send the right message, it also helps you to send it at the exact moment a prospect needs it the most
- The right place – finding out where your prospects prefer to be reached is difficult. Some prefer to receive emails, while others might favor social media or good old fashioned talking on the phone. Personalization lets you know where each individual prefers to interact
Personalization Helps You Segment Your Audience
One of the key problems with a scattergun approach is that you end up not resonating with anyone.
However, by using personalization strategies, you can quickly and easily segment your audience to ensure they’re getting the right information at the right time.
This will not only build trust and loyalty, but it will help speed up the sales funnel when you are able to serve content the customer needs at exactly the right time they need it.
When you can identify your different buyer personas (which might include CEOs of small businesses who’ve just begun searching for a tech solution as well as large corporations that have their wallet out ready to buy a solution), you can segment them into strategic groups and create personalized content that serves their specific needs.
You might choose to segment buyers using:
- Firmographics, which includes things like their business size, what industry they’re in, what level they’re at, their job title, and their location
- Tiering, which includes segmenting targets based on concrete expectations. For example, instead of targeting every company in a certain industry, you can instead focus on companies that have the potential to generate a certain amount of profit
- Needs, which means segmenting your prospects based on what they want from you and where they are at in the sales cycle
Video production company Vyond does this. They use personalization to segment their audience and serve different solutions to each group.
On one hand, they offer a self-service options for SMBs and, on the other, they provide a more service-oriented approach for larger enterprises.
Each one is framed in a different way and guides the target through the sales funnel differently (the enterprises are encouraged to speak with a salesperson, while the SMBs are led straight to a purchase form on the site).
Personalization Simplifies the Sales Funnel
One of the biggest issues B2B tech brands face is grappling with long sales cycles. Usually, purchasing decisions have to go through several different gatekeepers, and the costly price tag often means it takes buyers longer to make a decision.
But personalization can change this.
If you can provide the right content for the right people at the right time, you’ll be able to push them through the sales cycle quicker.
For example, someone who has their wallet out and is ready to buy is more likely to convert from a case study that shows how a previous buyer benefitted from your product than a generic piece of content aimed at top-of-the-funnel prospects.
Evergage, a customer data platform, works this in their favor.
The brand creates a ton of content for a range of different audiences, which means there’s something for everyone. Content is created with different use cases in mind, as well as different industries and different stages of the funnel.
Instead of promoting that content to everyone, Evergage segments its audience and uses their data to provide personalized content recommendations.
Basically, each website visitor gets served a different content asset depending on who they are, what they’ve already downloaded, and whether they’re already a customer or not.
Personalization is Worth It
It might seem like an overwhelming task, but when you can start breaking up your audiences based on their behaviors and characteristics and serve them the right content at the right time, you’re putting yourself at a significant advantage.
Not only will you shorten and simplify the sales funnel (which means more customers in a shorter space of time), but you’ll build trust and relationships with buyers who’ll keep coming back for more.