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If you are lucky, you have had the experience of seeing a graceful swan glide along the surface of a crystal clear pond with barely any surface ripple. It’s so beautiful that you probably don’t think of the unglamorous churning of webbed feet below the surface.
When you look at the fantastical creature, you only care about its graceful beauty and the sense of peace it evokes.
Your customers are a bit like that. They don’t care about the internal structure of the marketing and sales efforts you use to deliver the goods. But if you don’t have the right strategy or the right tools, and your left and right feet, embodied by your sales and marketing teams, aren’t working together, you risk sinking the whole swan metaphor.
Your customers want a great experience, and your job is to deliver it. To do this, you need to pay close attention to every movement of a webbed toe throughout the customer’s buying journey to ensure it goes smoothly, from first contact… to deal. … and beyond.
But if you’re like most tech companies, you’re not delivering that experience as well as you could. In fact, 74% of B2B technology buyers face complexities in the buyer’s journey that impact their ability to secure quality deals, Gartner found.
Here are three recommendations for creating great customer experiences to engage buyers and move them through the funnel.
1. Use a buying group marketing strategy
If you’re like most B2B tech companies, you’ve probably implemented some form of account-based marketing (ABM) strategy that identifies valuable target accounts and personas, then uses specific data-enrichment technology. to ABM to individualize marketing content. ABM personalizes outreach and helps you synchronize your sales and marketing teams; however, while ABM is a definite step forward, challenges remain.
Relying solely on traditional ABM misses a critical factor: Purchasing decisions in modern organizations are made by teams. “When purchasing a solution that cost more than $5,000, it was a group of three or more people who made that decision 84% of the time,” Forrester found.
The goal of buying group marketing (BGM) is to engage the entire buying group on target accounts. The approach lets you design context-aware content for every step of the journey and for every person involved in the decision-making process, whether in IT, legal, marketing, or another function.
BGM is personalization at a granular and relevance level. Your content, creation, and delivery should be designed around the different pain points and needs of buying group members, thus closing the era of generic content.
2. Personalize with custom advertising tools
Implementing a solid BGM strategy depends on the tools you use to execute and measure it. A personalized advertising (PBA) tool can help you create and deliver personalization based on contextual relevance, and it also gives you insight into the performance of your internal platforms and channels.
For example, Influ2’s PBA offers attribution reports that show granular person-based information. Instead of numbers and figures, reports show a holistic view of contact activity in your buying groups, giving sales and marketing a clear idea of what buyers are interested in. The data is based on the specific buying group involved in the decision making, not the entire account.
PBA helps you refine your work by providing meaningful data to measure and improve campaigns and better analyze your distribution channels.
3. Align your sales and marketing commitments
Alignment between sales and marketing is vital to a BGM approach. Poor communication and organizational silos are the enemy, creating inaccurate data and unpleasant, disjointed customer experiences.
Aligning sales and marketing teams requires a fundamental paradigm shift that is part of a good BGM strategy: a unification of the funnel. After this change, there is no longer a transfer from marketing to sales; instead, the two teams work together from first contact to last, sharing common data, coordinating messaging, and using common technology and metrics.
Keep the waters calm and carry on
The goal of the tips in this article is to organize and validate a premium customer experience and achieve measurable results.
At the top of the funnel, any activity should create awareness for your brand or product. In the middle of the funnel, you work to educate your buying group, and this phase depends on marketing and sales working together to map buying groups within your target accounts. Once these have been defined and they begin to engage, you can distribute activities between marketing and sales departments with messages that are personalized but choreographed to each persona.
BGM requires a certain degree of organizational maturity, but the benefit of this level of strategic precision – when successfully implemented – is that it not only helps close more deals, but also serves as a market differentiator. that will help your swan take flight.
Written by Nirosha Methananda, VP of Marketing for Influ2.