Humanize your B2B brand with personalization

July 27, 2022

| #DigitalMedia

For so long, B2B marketing has been associated with data, logic, and rationality. These days, it’s almost an identical twin of B2C marketing. Traditionally, B2B campaigns are targeted at clients In B2B campaigns, most clients have extensive buying cycles and multiple decision-makers, which is why retention and engagement strategies are thought to be needed. It still holds for a handful of businesses today; however, we need to be aware that B2B buyers are also people with personal needs and preferences.

With the world being driven by data, it is expected of B2C marketers to tailor personalized experiences to consumers. To keep up, B2B marketers have adapted their strategies to meet prospects where they are with what they want. As with B2C, personalization is equally important since B2B buyers have also become conditioned to expect it. Ultimately, people prefer personalized digital experiences and marketers need to indulge them and prepare campaigns that fit these needs. Here is an introduction to B2B personalization, followed by a few helpful tips to get you started.

Photo by Antenna on Unsplash

B2B personalization is important

Personalization can be defined simply as the process of making something suitable for a particular person’s needs. In a marketing sense, this means making customer interactions faster and easier, providing more effective and efficient solutions to customers’ needs, thus increasing customer satisfaction, and returning customers. It is an interaction between 2 people, where a brand acts like a human in an engaging conversation. Is this important for your business? Allow us to mention 3 important reasons why we think so:

• Right message: B2B personalization strategies helps you to send the right message to the right client.

• Right timing: Not only can you tailor messages to your client’s needs, but you can also deliver them at the right time.

• Right channel: Personalized services enable you to find potential clients. Some B2B clients prefer email marketing, while others put more emphasis on paid search/PPC or outbound calling.

These improvements may seem insignificant, yet they have a big impact on your company. Business personalization studies have proved the benefits of B2B personalization:

• 94% of customer insights and marketing professionals across various industries said personalization is “important,” “very important,” or “extremely important” for matching their existing marketing objectives.

• 79% of organizations that surpassed revenue targets have a documented personalization tactic.

• Customer expectations are that companies should understand their unique needs and expectations, according to Salesforce research.

Useful personalization practices

You’ve now seen the logic behind B2B personalization and the benefits it could provide you. Now it is time to find out what the most useful practices in this area are. Here are some approaches you can implement to get the most out of your personalization efforts.

Gather and analyse data to enable personalization

A B2B sales cycle is complicated and requires multiple touchpoints. Unfortunately, the client may leave at any stage of the process. That is why the user experience should not just focus on your product or service’s features but should adapt to inform and educate the client. The first step is to remember your returning customers’ information. Next, you need to recognize their behaviour to serve the right content. Finally, you should assist your B2B clients with relevant suggestions and recommendations, which will make them happy to interact with you.

Manage the B2B customer segmentation

There are 3 frequently used models for customer segmentation:

1. Segmentation based on firmographics: B2B clients are categorized by their firmographic traits. These include features such as locations, business size, industries, managerial levels, titles, functions, etc.

2. Segmentation based on tiering: This is a practical method that targets prospects based on concrete expectations. Rather than looking at industry-wide clients, you will look for B2B customers who have the potential to generate a firm amount of profit or cooperate with you for a good period.

3. Segmentation based on needs: This segmentation based on needs considers what your clients want from you. You can micro-segment but beware of total diversification.

Do note that each industry has its distinctiveness, so you need to amend segmentation practices to match your requirements.

Multiple touchpoints for B2B clients

People often forget that B2B prospects can reach you in more places than just on the official company website. There are many other touchpoints, some examples include mobile apps, social media, live webinars and physical or virtual exhibitions. You risk losing too many customers along the way when you neglect these channels. Develop multiple touchpoints to improve user experience and allow your marketing team to create customized content. Each touchpoint, in such circumstances, would present something new to your prospects, which would increase upselling, cross-selling, and repeat purchases.

Lead your customers through experiences

A company can best help B2B customers by demonstrating in real-time how its products and services work. The user experience is entirely different when such a tactic is used. However, in today’s environment, it may not be possible for everyone. Fortunately, with today’s rapid progression of technology, we can provide clients with virtual experiences. Any physical experience you can think of, there would be a possibility that there is a virtual counterpart. Now, you can create a personalized experience that is physical, virtual or hybrid!

How you can improve your personalization strategy

Today, B2B buyers look out for leaders, who inspire, challenge and are knowledgeable. Many B2B buyers are millennials (aged 26 -41), and this age group is very familiar with social networking. Now if you’re a business that is looking for ways to improve your existing personalization strategy to reach out to this group of B2B buyers, here are some tips that we think can help you get started:

1. Use storytelling in your communication

Storytelling helps appeal to people’s attention and evokes emotions and empathy. Through stories, business organizations can be directed to take action. Stories are powerful because they make abstract ideas tangible. Businesses with complex offerings can use real-life stories to simplify and relate the benefits of products to users. Build connections and involve your customers by placing them at the heart of it.

2. Be engaging and sociable

Social media marketing makes use of 2-way communication between the brand and its audience. Instead of pushing your product and offerings to them, participate in conversations that your target audience is interested in. Focus on what your audience has to say and listen to them, this will naturally build their trust and confidence. B2B brands tend to use corporate jargon and overly fluffed-up language in their communication. As a result, the conversation takes on a formal and distant tone, while communicating in a genuine, engaging, and informative way builds credibility and loyalty with the audience.

3. Be the embodiment of your brand personality

A brand’s personality is mirrored by the way it communicates and resonates with its audience. A brand’s personality is an embodiment of its values and vision. When a brand showcases traits like creativeness or inventiveness or ambition or wittiness, it humanizes it extensively. Creating a brand personality supplies consistency to its voice and tone. This familiarity motivates a deeper relationship with your audience.

Conclusion

Personalization is becoming a more noticeable capability for marketing and will become an essential driver for B2B marketing. Understanding the demands of customers should be an ongoing practice. This will require experimentation and interaction, but it will offer a more human experience in the long run. Dedicating a team who can develop this in an organization can assist customers at the right time and the right place. People want to communicate with people. Although technology can offer this, it won’t always be perfect and personal.

If you’re looking for a dedicated team to develop brand personalization for you or your clients, look no further than Convergence Concepts. We have the skills you need to humanize a B2B brand when it comes to experience design, strategy, creative and digital media. Feel free to reach out to us at marketing@convergenceconcepts.com.sg with your inquiries.