Gartner says: Sales and marketing influences just 32% of B2B buyer’s journey

buyers journeyI am fascinated by a recent Gartner study about the journey of 700 enterprise buyers across the U.S., EMEA, Brazil, India and China. According to a recent interview with Hank Barnes, Research Vice President at Gartner, the study focused on four areas:

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Topics: B2B, B2B marketing, buyer interviews, buyer journey, buyer persona, Buyer Personas, Buying Criteria, competitive marketing, competitive strategy, Good Use of Personas, Market Research, market research, marketing plans, sales enablement, Sales people, Technology Buyers

It's a buyer's market, so why do marketers think like sellers?

Knowing your buyer isn't exactly a new idea. I first learned to interview buyers in the 80's when I was with Regis McKenna, the PR firm that represented Apple, Intel and many other technology leaders at the time.

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Topics: B2B, B2B marketing, buyer persona, Buyer Personas, content marketing, Good Use of Personas, Technology Buyers, Uncategorized

Marketers need to find a premium-price position for mature products

James’ email question was logical – “This is a solution that hasn’t changed much in years, and the market is really mature. So we know a lot about how our buyers think. Is there a simplified way to make sure that our messaging is on target?”

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Topics: B2B, B2B marketing, buyer insights, buyer journey, Buyer Personas, Buying Criteria, buying process, discounting, Good Use of Personas, Market Research, persona marketing, positioning, Positioning & Messaging, premium pricing, product marketing, Product Marketing Redefined, research, Sales people, Technology Buyers, win loss, Win/Loss

Persona marketing ebook available . . . please pass it around

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Topics: B2B, Buyer Personas, Good Use of Personas, Market Research, persona ebook, persona marketing, Positioning & Messaging, Product Marketing Redefined, product marketing training, Technology Buyers, Uncategorized

A new year, a new decade, a new chance to help buyers find answers to their problems

Judging by the current interest in buyer personas, 2010 could be the decade when companies realize the competitive advantage that belongs to those companies that have the deepest insight into their target buyers.

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Topics: B2B marketing, buyer persona, Buyer Personas, Buying Criteria, Positioning & Messaging, product marketing, Product Marketing Redefined, Sales people, Technology Buyers, Writing

CIO buyer persona needs new messaging

Just about everyone I know is working feverishly to update their messaging strategies. The abrupt downturn in the economy has caused most prospects to rethink their priorities and "buying criteria"-- the capabilities that a buyer ranks highest during the purchase process. For most of us, this means that any messaging we developed prior to September 2008 needs to be rewritten.

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Topics: B2B, Buyer Personas, Buying Criteria, Good Use of Personas, Positioning & Messaging, Technology Buyers

Buyer personas get personal

Working on a buyer persona for a chief information officer last week, my client listed the predictable pain points on the flip chart -- shrinking budgets, conflicting priorities, legacy solutions that are difficult to integrate but costly to replace.

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Topics: Advertising, B2B, Buyer Personas, Buying Criteria, Positioning & Messaging, Public Relations, Technology Buyers

Demo on the first date, anyone?

I’ve been asked to talk about a narrow but controversial topic – whether products should be demonstrated at tradeshows. Some of my colleagues say that this is a bad idea, but I “never say never” when it comes to any marketing tactic. Instead, I evaluate the buying process for the products the company is marketing, outlining steps in a sensitive vendor/buyer dance that is a lot like the intricacies of dating. The best steps will differ greatly depending on the characteristics of the partners in the dance.

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Topics: Good Use of Personas, Technology Buyers

Right-brained or left-brained marketing

I grew up thinking I’d be a fashion designer. My foray into the computer industry was accidental and (I thought) temporary. There’s a long story here, but the short version is that I came to appreciate the brilliant people and fascinating products in this industry. Tech marketing seemed like the perfect solution – keep my great paying job, work with interesting people, and if I went into marketing, I could spend my time being really creative.

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Topics: B2B, Buyer Personas, Good Use of Personas, Positioning & Messaging, Product Marketing Redefined, Technology Buyers

Blogging for buyer persona input

Kudos to Tim Buntel at Adobe for a series of blog posts about the buyer personas he needs to influence. After attending the Effective Product Marketing seminar, he developed a persona for a developer he named Chris and posted a description of the guy on his blog, Not Too Fluffy (love the Teddy Bear, Tim). The first of dozens of comments said that the post was "creepy" in its accuracy. More people chimed in with comments to confirm and build on Tim's original thesis. Tim's added a couple of new posts in the last few days to keep the conversation going and gain more input. This is a great example of leveraging the blogosphere to develop persona insights and engage buyers in a favorite pastime -- talking about themselves.

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Topics: Buyer Personas, Good Use of Personas, Technology Buyers

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