Your customers aren't all one and the same -- they're one of a kind. With today's technology, you can ensure your marketing approaches them that way, too. Identifying your buyer personas is one of the first steps you can take to formulate a fruitful relationship with your audience.
NetProspex is nestled at the crux of its clients' marketing efforts. This data management company helps B2Bs grow marketing data whether it's within the heart of marketing automation or through lead generation solutions.
Of course, NetProspex is a business in itself — with its very own marketing needs and wants. In 2013, the team sought out a solution to drive more traffic to the website.
The company also needed to adjust its SEO strategy due to an organizational transformation, explained Tamara Graves, Senior Director of Demand Generation, NetProspex.
"We had an evolution in our business," she said. "We had been primarily a data services company and not so much data management. Most of our website SEO was based around our actual data, about the records within our reference database. We wanted to evolve to be a data management company."
Graves added the transformation wasn't so much about how many records NetPropex had, but more that the company could help people standardize, normalize and add business insight to the records that people already have.
Due to this, the website needed a complete overhaul to both increase conversions and the value of its traffic. Because NetProspex is a marketing industry vendor, it could apply its own service of data management to accomplish this.
The team put the creation of a customized website experience as the core of the website overhaul. The idea was to use behavior marketing capabilities to provide relevant content to garner more conversions on the site, Graves said. The new website would build identities for each visitor, offering more relevant and dynamic resources.
The site achieved this customization by marketing to NetProspex's different buyer personas with carefully targeted content through progressive profiling, which allows visitors to provide data over time in exchange for resources such as product guides and webinars.
The effort would also encompass the alignment of email marketing automation with buyer behavior to build a better relationship with visitors as they move along their purchase journey. The company's site structure was fairly basic, relating to visitors based on guesses rather than facts.
"We dropped you into a nurture program based on some assumptions that we made about what you might be interested in, rather than what you were actually clicking on," Graves said.
The first piece to reworking the NetProspex website was to take a deeper dive into its buyer personas. NetProspex identified three main personas to target.
These were the leaders in the following departments:
To discover more about these three personas, the team recruited customers who matched those persona prospects. The team then conducted interviews and held focus groups to obtain answers to questions such as:
"We took that information and used it to help us formulate messaging," Graves explained. "We used that [information] to view all the content that we had developed and weed out what we thought was still working, what needed to be tweaked and what needed to be updated."
Next, the team needed to both create and tailor content to each of the personas based on customer preferences. This was achieved mainly through messaging.
"Sales folks tend to not have a big attention span, so you really have to give them more snackable pieces of content, very action oriented," Graves explained. "Demand is more about generation revenue or leads — really best practice around that type of thing. And [data management] is a little bit more technically focused."
She explained NetProspex's former website revolved around "we" messaging.
"We" as NetProspex can do this, "we" as NetProspex can do that. But for the new site, the team created 100 pieces of targeted content geared specifically toward its buyer personas.
This encompassed a mix of completely new pieces as well as some that were revamped and refreshed. The targeted content that visitors would experience would be determined by page visit behavior.
Prospects' initial conversations with NetProspex often ooze of the same questions: "What's so great about your data? What makes you an expert?"
The company wanted to seize this opportunity to work these answers into its framework. The team did this through the implementation of its "Smarter Data" tab, affixed to the top of the website alongside key sections such as products, customers, partners and resources.
"We wanted to show that we are thought leaders in the data management space, and to talk a lot about what makes our data smarter," Graves said.
This area of the site details NetProspex's processes, complimented by infographics and detailed insights into topics including best-in-class demand generation and marketing data management (MDM).
The redesigned NetProspex website works for its visitors as follows:
From there, NetProspex can email prospects customized content as they go through the website.
If a visitor doesn't return to the website within a certain time period, they will receive push email reminders.
Visitors are also given the opportunity to reset their preferences at the bottom of the Resource Center.
"We create and manage our content based on buyer personas but also phase in the buying journey," Graves explained.
With this in mind, the team tags NetProspex content by both persona and stage in the buyer cycle.
By shifting its customers' needs at the forefront, NetProspex noticed positive results as soon as its new-and-improved website launched in April of 2013. As of late, the site has experienced:
One of the most inspiring characteristics of this campaign was that it was implemented with a team of just four individuals.
Graves added that running this campaign was perhaps easier with a concentrated team than it would've been in a larger organization.
Due to the speedy approval process of a smaller group, the team was able to move forward and dive right into the effort. She acknowledged that this type of project doesn't have to be strenuous to be successful.
"I think every marketer is trying to get to that one conversation, but it sounds very complex and daunting," she said. "You don't have to have 100 pieces of content. Just start out with a few, even if it's just three pieces, and give it a try. Don't be overwhelmed by thinking you have to [exercise] a whole lot of effort."
NetProspex's website overhaul and email automation effort kept the customers' needs central throughout the effort. Consistency across all channels is something the company strives for, Graves explained.
Whether it's email, Web, social or at trade shows, she said NetProspex works to integrate its message across its various channels and "talk the same talk."
Tamara Graves, Senior Director of Demand Generation
Chris Pape, Executive Creative Director
Ellen Valentine, Product Evangelist
Peter Bergen, Senior Project Manager
Search Marketing: Can your marketing team identify your buyer personas?
B2B Email Marketing: How a publishing company used marketing automation to increase CTR 1,112%
Marketing Automation: Key challenges a global information company overcame to transform from batch and blast to persona-driven email marketing
Email Marketing: 133% ROI for B2B's first-ever lead nurturing program
Increase Mobile Conversion Rates
These five free micro classes (each under 12 minutes) apply 25 years of research to help you maximize the impact of your messages in a mobile environment.Get the Course >
Test Discovery Tool
Show business leaders all the results of your testing efforts with this free tool.Get the Tool >
A Model of Your Customer's Mind
These 21 tools and concepts have helped capture more than $500 million in test wins.Download the File >
Research-based Lead Generation Swipe File
22 valid marketing experiments to give you ideas for your next A/B test.Download the File >
Free A/B Test Planning Scenario Tool
This simple tool helps you visualize factors that affect the ROI implications of test sequencing.Get the Tool >
Receive the latest case studies and data on email, lead gen, and social media along with MarketingSherpa updates and promotions.