B2B Marketing

Providing Vital Insights into Niche Customer Groups

One of the biggest challenges in B2B marketing is breaking down your audience to ensure you address the entirety of your buyer persona. Why? First off, it’s easier to engage and build value with the highest quality groups of customers. Second, niche customer groups tend to be indirectly motivated by your marketing efforts. Therefore, to really drive conversions from these types of buyers, you’ll need to market to their peers within the same decision-making group.

You may be surprised to know that the type of insight you provide your more challenging customer personas with isn’t as important as how you distribute it. Yes, the content itself is key towards converting those buyers through the funnel, but you also need to create meaningful interactions using data and research. Diving into a niche customer profile isn’t easy, but it is possible—so, let’s look at how to approach these types of buyers.

Using Marketing Intent Data

If you’re like most B2B marketers, you’ve probably been tasked with building out your intent data profile at some point in your career. Rightfully so, because 98% of companies found intent data improves the effectiveness of their sales and marketing campaigns. Intent data is a worthwhile endeavor enabling you to better understand not only your high-quality buyers, but also the more niche ones. Intent data comes in many forms and testing each one gets expensive. You must understand your goals and what you need intent data to do for you before investing in a solution. In this instance, there are a couple of approaches to help you build value with a more needs-heavy client base.

Predictive Analytics

Predictive analytics sits at the forefront of current intent data algorithms due to its ability to provide key decision-making insights. As a marketer this information is extremely precious. With a group of niche customers, you have to be one step ahead of their research and the best way to do that is to understand what information they’re going to seek, and when. You can then present your content and products at an opportune time while addressing the challenges your customers are facing.

Keep in mind that when onboarding data from a predictive analytics initiative the information you acquire is time sensitive. It’s crucial to have a marketing campaign plan in place that you can quickly pivot to make the most of the data. One of the biggest benefits of predictive analytics for your demand generation efforts is the consistent prioritization of customer engagement, so layering it on top of active or future campaigns can really make a difference in your conversion metrics overall.

Behavioral Intent

The other facet to niche customer marketing is the use of behavioral intent. At first glance, behavioral data may seem similar to predictive analytics as its main goal is also to help direct your marketing efforts. However, the major value that behavioral intent can bring your team is the understanding of how and where your buyers are receiving information about products or solutions. Again, if we look at why niche customer groups are so hard to generate leads from, we find the biggest challenge is the abundance of information gathering due to their specific needs. As a marketer, using behavioral intent data helps to provide your potential customers with the most valuable information at the right time.

Acquiring B2B intent data can help engage segmented groups of buyers.
Acquiring B2B intent data can help engage segmented groups of buyers.

Tracking Content Engagement

If B2B marketing can be defined as a push-pull method of buyer engagement, then it’s safe to say that same mentality applies to B2B data. Third-party data (such as the types mentioned above) are some of the most valuable sources of buyer information that you can get hold of. Yet first-party intent data is often forgotten about or taken for granted. It’s easy to forget that hosting and sharing content enables you to learn a lot about your buyers. All you need to do is figure out how to capture and analyze that information.

Content analytics platforms like Parsley and Seismic are great solutions to help you gather data on what even the most niche buyer cares about. You can then take that information and apply it across your marketing campaigns to provide useful information to the smaller personas you’re targeting. In doing so, you enable easy engagement with your content throughout the buyer’s journey as you’re constantly sharing up-to-date and relevant insights with your niche customers.

Creating a Content Narrative

Tracking content engagement is the first step toward creating a fleshed-out story for your buyers to follow. As mentioned previously, the actual content itself isn’t the most important part of engaging a niche prospect base, however the narrative you craft with the content you share is extremely important. If the goal is to increase the quality of the insights you provide to your buyers—resulting in more MQLs in the pipeline—then it’s safe to assume you’ll need to make the most of every outbound and inbound marketing initiative.

Creating narrative cohesion isn’t easy, but it is attainable. A great place to start is to work backwards from the result your product or service delivers, identifying the top needs that would trigger product-driven research. You can then speak to those needs with direct and indirect marketing insights centered around data you’ve acquired (see above) and the persona of the buyer you’re marketing to. According to CMI, the top three results marketers achieve through content marketing are increased brand awareness, trust equity with current and prospective customers, especially niche customers, and education based on their solutions.

Effective multi-channel content marketing is key to building value with your customers.
Effective multi-channel content marketing is key to building value with your customers.

Engaging Buyers Where They Are

Everything said in this article can only take you as far as your strategic marketing campaigns allow. You won’t see increased engagement with your niche customers if you don’t take steps to be proactive in your marketing. The best way to do that is to simply engage your buyers in their most familiar spaces. If you’ve spent time building a strong intent data profile on your segmented audience, and successfully tracked the type of content that audience consumes, then you’re primed to create a campaign that speaks directly to your customers.

When creating a content campaign for your niche audiences, try and remember that they’ll need more actionable insights than what might be achieved through your email marketing list. Keeping that in mind, here are some of the best channels to engage your niche buyers:

  • Social media sites like LinkedIn and Facebook
  • Aggregate review sites
  • Paid search keywords based on targeted product functions
  • Advocacy marketing through case studies and research

There are definitely more outlets for effective content marketing and demand generation. As long as you’re thinking about the actionable next steps your buyer can take to enable further research, then you’re more than likely in a good spot.

Generating Leads from Niche Customers

The more insights you can provide your harder customer segments with, the better. This will only have a positive impact on the leads you generate. The accuracy and personalization of the insights you share is also just as important. Bad data or non-relevant information can make your prospective buyers question the legitimacy of your products and brand. If you’re interested in learning more about how to increase the quality of the data you can provide your customers with and how to generate higher quality leads from that data, check out our benchmark report, “Eliminating Bad Data: How Content Syndication Enriches Your Database.”