People are overwhelmed by the onslaught of generic ads presented to them every moment of every day. Even though B2B interactions are “business to business,” human beings are on both ends, making choices and recommendations, asking and answering questions, and exchanging information. As the world continues to become numb to nonstop, impersonal advertisements, B2B marketers must develop new ways to engage the right audiences with useful, relevant, and welcome content. The 2020 B2B Marketing Mix Report shows that digital is going to be at the top of marketing spending, and personalization is going to be the key to connecting with your digital customers.
Digital personalization is a powerful tool for connecting with professionals, making sales, and building brand loyalty. It allows marketers to present relevant content to the most receptive viewers, understand their preferences and wants, and offer solutions to their unique needs.
It’s important to note that there’s a fine line between welcome and intrusive advertising, and there’s not a one-size-fits-all formula for achieving the perfect balance.
In this blog, we’ll look at how digital personalization can be used effectively in B2B marketing, and touch on the pitfalls marketers like you should be aware of.
Enhance Personalization Through Data Gathering
Digital data collection allows businesses to analyze customer preferences in incredible detail. Data collected through social media activity, blog interactions, searches, location information, and general website usage, shows us who our audience is, how they use our products or services, and how they might change or customize our products and services to better suit their needs. Using that data, we can understand our customers and hone advertising and selling strategies based on their needs and expectations.
By analyzing the data collected from our customers, we can take the first steps towards digital personalization through segmentation. Market segmentation is the activity of dividing your market beyond customers and non-customers. It lets you take a closer look at what different groups of people want from your products and services, and how you can best provide solutions to those needs.
B2B service providers often have a massive impact on the operating processes and capabilities of their customers. Successful sales of B2B products often involve communicating with and convincing high-level officers and executives. By segmenting your audience to serve content that resonates specifically with decisionmakers, you can better address their unique pain points with effective solutions. Personalization in the form of segmentation will be relevant in most areas discussed here.
Give Users a Better Experience With Web Personalization
Website and app personalization are about creating customized experiences for individual visitors. If you’ve ever used a service like Grubhub a few times, you have some clear examples of how individual personalization on a website can work. When you sign in, they show you what’s open in your area, your previous orders, frequent orders, and anything else they can to make it as tempting and convenient for you to place an order through the app or website. Amazon provides on-site personalization throughout its store by advertising replenishable items you’ve ordered in the past, such as cleaning supplies or coffee.
Think about what people want from your website and how they use the content you have available. Are there ways to make their experiences easier or save them some time by streamlining a reordering process? Consider these website personalization methods to enhance the customer experience:
- Recommendations based on frequent or related searches
- Predictive searching
- Updates or addons for products and services already in use
- Geographically relevant content
- Device or operating system specific recommendations
Provide One-to-One Interactions With AI Chatbots
With artificial intelligence (AI), you can potentially achieve one-to-one personalization with every customer that’s willing to participate. Chatbots communicate with users in real-time to provide accurate, useful responses to questions and queries. AI chatbots are available 24/7 and can support limitless unique customers at once. These features make for better user experiences with minimal wait times, fast and consistent responses, and no chances of a negative human interaction. Think about how AI could be integrated into your sales and support processes to enhance customer experiences, such as:
- Process and manage online orders and sales
- Provide technical support
- Book appointments
- Answer general questions
Make Direct Connections to Individuals and Groups With Email Personalization
Personalized emails stand out to readers and have a better chance of being opened, read, and explored. Simply including the recipient’s name in the subject line increases the probability of the email being opened by 20%. That translates into a 31% increase in sales leads and a reduction in unsubscribes.2
Beyond addressing each recipient by name, email campaigns can also be personalized through segmentation. Using what we know about our customers from the data we’ve gathered, we can divide them into smaller, like-minded groups. Segmentation allows us to serve relevant content to specific groups. Personalizing an email campaign can be as simple as segmenting your customer lists so that specific offers or optional services only get sent to the most relevant users.
Speak to Decisionmakers Through Account-Based Marketing
Personalization makes it possible to get the most out of account-based marketing (ABM). Looking ahead, more than 60% of companies are planning to launch their own ABM-based campaign in the next year.1
With ABM, the focus is on creating content that resonates with a particular group of people or even a single person. It makes a great supplement to a larger marketing plan. Most often, ABM strategies involve talking to the people who have a direct say in the decisions made by a company. This way, you can treat individuals as an entire market, and focus your content directly at those people, rather than a whole industry. By connecting with the stakeholders on a personal level, you can address the needs of an entire organization.
Is It Possible to be Too Intrusive?
Of course, we always want our users to be comfortable and respected during their interactions with our content. Even in a B2B personalization context, it’s possible to gather and share too much information. Personalize content respectfully and responsibly for appropriate reasons. Irrelevant content and sensitive details such as age, gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or mortality can make people adverse to using your products or services. Design your advertisements and interactions to delight users with relevant resources, helpful recommendations, and convenience to get the most out of your digital personalization efforts.
Ponder the Power of Digital Personalization
Personalization in digital B2B marketing is a fascinating concept that’s being applied to all types of marketing strategies. From attracting new prospects to improving existing customer experiences to adapting to the changing needs of your customers as the market evolves, personalization should have a place at some level of your digital marketing campaign. Explore personalization and other B2B marketing strategies and tactics that are going to provide the best ROI next year.
Going forward, digital marketing personalization will be an enormous part of maintaining connections with customers and evolving along with them. Are you ready to offer your clients the personalized solutions they expect in 2020 and beyond? Let us help ensure yours is the first name that comes to mind. Explore personalization and other B2B marketing strategies and tactics in the B2B Marketing Mix Report to maximize the return on your investments throughout the year.