B2B Marketing: Combining Online & Offline Buyer Behavior
In order to motivate buyer behavior, you have to understand your buyer. And in addition to studying buyer behavior offline, you can examine your prospect’s online behavior in order to create a more complete persona of whom you are targeting.
Field research is an integral method for understanding your prospect and his/her buyer behavior, and I have written numerous blogs about ways to do qualitative research in B2Bmarketing. (Search our site for B2B Marketing Research for blogs that range from selling research to your c-suite to the actual research process.)
In addition to offline research, also do online research. Tony Zambito presented a webinar for MarketingProfs that discussed this idea of combining offline and online research. He suggested to ask the following questions:
-What sites do your prospects visit? Visit these sites frequently and see what your prospects are saying.
-Are you prospects voicing any issues online? Listen to them and document these to try and find trends and similarities.
-What are your prospects trying to accomplish online? Take note of these and look for patterns for patterns.
-Become a part of their online communities to see what you learn through your firsthand experience.
And as I say constantly, it isn’t enough to just do this work; you then have to use it. Combine your offline and online research in order to create a more complete understanding of who your buyer is, and let this drive your strategy and communicate outreach.
Many marketers assume they know their target audience and never do any research to confirm or refute their assumptions. Still others do all their research, and then never even use it! The key to motivating buyer behavior is understanding your buyer in order to frame your content accordingly – so remember to not only do your research – but also to use your research!
Vann Morris is the Director of Buying Behavior Studies with the Atlanta B2B advertising agency, MLT Creative. She is a Social and Behavioral Scientist who is currently working on her PhD in Communications, and uses her strong theoretical background in order to show how scientific theory should be used to develop strategy and effective B2B marketing campaigns.