Here's How to Create Personalized, Customer Focused Content
Personalized marketing is a hot topic right now, with many in the digital B2B space looking for ways to make their content speak directly to individual customers or groups.
We've all had that feeling when we've unwrapped a generic gift which has had little or no thought put into it - socks, ties, shower gel, deodorant sets, etc. Now compare that to the feeling you get when you receive a gift from a friend or family member who really knows you well?
It's like apples and oranges, no comparison. That's the feeling you are trying to recreate, albeit on a smaller emotional scale, with a personalized content strategy.
Personalized content is all about making your prospect feel special. There's a reason why most dating websites give the advice to avoid generic messages, such as, "Hey," or "Hi, there," because people are more likely to respond if they feel you are interested in talking to them specifically, rather than taking a scattergun approach. Research by Seismic found that 80% of participants placed a higher value on personalized content versus non-personalized.
How then can you recreate that personalized feeling with your content marketing? Well, there are a few different methods.
Audience segmenting is one of the more popular and less labor-intensive methods of personalizing content for your audience. You can segment your audience by any number of factors, including job title, industry, geography, politics, education, and more.
Segment-specific content makes life easy by allowing you to create base blogs or articles. 80% of this content will be identical regardless of the audience, but then you personalize the other 20% to make it speak directly to the chosen segment. This allows you to efficiently create different content tracks for each segment, without the need to create 100% unique material for each.
Buyer-personas should be a core part of any marketing strategy. If you're not familiar with that term, then you should stop what you're doing with your marketing and start creating them straight away.
Once you have your personas documented and ready to use, you can refine them over time as you acquire more data on your demographics. The best way to do this is to start distributing content based on your personas and seeing what performs well, and which pieces could do with rethinking.
Make each piece of content 100% customized for each target persona and ensure there's a steady and even schedule. You don't want to produce too much content targeting one persona only to neglect the others.
Another key part of creating personas is to map out the buyer's journey, from the moment they first become aware of your company to when they decide to purchase your product or service. The trick is in trying to predict the kinds of questions prospects may be asking themselves at each stage of the journey.
Stage-specific content, therefore, is designed to target the prospect at each point in the buyer's journey and answer these questions for them - perhaps before they've even realized they're asking them. By targeting them with this kind of content, you take the initiative and allay any fears or concerns they may have about progressing to the next stage.
Account-based marketing is a big deal right now. With this kind of marketing, you target the specific accounts you'd like to sell to as opposed to the market/industry as a whole.
You can, therefore, create content which speaks directly to the accounts you wish to target. With a little research, you can find out the specific issues that the company is dealing with and create content which explains why your product or service is the ideal solution for them.
Similar to account-specific content, the lead-specific variety is a piece you create for one particular generated lead. Obviously, depending on the size of your company, this could be quite a labor-intensive endeavor, but you can make life easier for your content creators by identifying common pain-points across your leads and producing general material which can then be customized.
Lead-specific content is a great way to target those prospects in the middle of the sales funnel who have already engaged with your brand.
As you can see, there are lots of different methods of personalizing content for your audience. With a little imagination and effort, you can create amazing content, designed to invoke those feelings of receiving a thoughtful gift in the minds of your prospects.
As a major industry driver, personalization is set to be a hot topic at B2B Online 2018, in November, at Turnberry Isle, Miami, FL.
Please download the agenda today for more information and insights.