Deep Srivastav, Senior Vice President and Head of Client Strategies & Analytics at Franklin Templeton, offered insights into the use of personalization technologies in the business-to-business (B2B) marketing space during his keynote presentation at the 2018 CMO Financial Services Forum: Marketing & Technology Innovation in San Francisco on October 30. In his presentation, “Personalization in the B2B Marketing Space,” Srivastav provided tips to help B2B marketers effectively leverage personalization technologies.
Personalization is a key tenet of business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing. Yet B2B marketers often struggle to provide personalized experiences to a brand’s target audience.
Ultimately, data and analytics are paramount for B2B marketers that want to provide personalized customer experiences. If B2B marketers retrieve unstructured and structured customer data from a variety of sources, they can use this information to learn about a brand’s target audience. Then, B2B marketers can obtain actionable insights to provide personalized experiences that match or exceed customers’ expectations.
“There is a need for high accuracy, and there is a much more complex relationship between [B2B] clients,” Srivastav pointed out. “This often leads to highly unstructured data … and you are trying to [use this information] to figure out how to have a personalized conversation.”
Furthermore, B2B marketers must evaluate data across a wide range of business segments.
If B2B marketers retrieve data from myriad sources, they can understand market dynamics. Plus, these marketers can keep pace with market patterns and trends and tailor their personalization efforts accordingly. And as a result, B2B marketers can transform market data into meaningful insights that lead to unprecedented customer experiences.
“The performance of the markets changes every day, and the cycles of asset classes that come in keep changing,” Srivastav stated. “The level of complexity to figure out what an individual investor wants … involves very different dynamics that we try [to figure out].”
Building customer personas can have far-flung effects on B2B marketers as well.
Delivering a personalized experience to each customer time and time again may prove to be virtually impossible. Thankfully, various technologies empower B2B marketers to understand market patterns and trends and develop customer personas. With these personas in hand, B2B marketers are better equipped than ever before to engage consumers across different channels and platforms.
“Marketing tends to become much more persona-based, because you cannot create content for every individual,” Srivastav noted. “The more personas you have, the easier it becomes for people to come together.”
Oftentimes, marketing automation platforms can help B2B marketers speed up customer data collection and analysis. But these platforms must be customized based on an organization and its target audience.
By deploying a custom marketing automation platform, B2B marketers can retrieve and organize customer data. B2B marketers then can review this information, gain actionable insights from it and continue to update their data warehouse regularly. As such, these marketers can streamline their data collection and analysis and get the most out of the information at their disposal.
“You’ve got to have a marketing automation platform connected to one data warehouse that serves as a hub to link [information] together,” Srivastav said.
Text data may be critical for B2B marketers, too. Meanwhile, a marketing automation platform allows B2B marketers to collect text data and other information and generate insights as needed.
“There is a lot of text data that comes in … and taking all of this information together, we can create a curated data stack,” Srivastav indicated. “You need to take all of this information and make it meaningful for each individual client.”
Customer data and insights must be shared between B2B marketing and sales teams. If both of these teams analyze customer and market information, they can consistently brainstorm solutions to engage consumers.
Implementing data collection and analysis technologies across marketing and sales teams is pivotal. These technologies foster collaboration among both teams – something that may help an organization optimize the value of its customer data.
Customer data collection and analysis are ongoing processes for B2B marketers. As data accumulates over time, marketers must take steps to use this information to provide meaningful business results.
If B2B marketers regularly assess data, they can use this information to make data-driven strategic decisions. They next can establish marketing campaigns and goals and monitor their day-to-day results. Best of all, marketers can use data to find the best ways to connect with consumers, as well as help an organization accomplish its revenue and customer engagement goals.
“[B2B marketers] have to deliver,” Srivastav stated. “You need to go through the data stack not bottom-up, but top-down. You need to pick an area … and start to see real, tangible impact [of data], and then the conversation will change.”