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How To Expand Your Digital Audiences

Episode Summary

Digital marketing has opened the door to a new world of potential customers who were once off most B2B sellers’ radar. But with these new audiences comes the challenge of quickly engaging them with information that’s relevant to their daily work. A customer service manager might become a great advocate for your ticketing solution, but they aren’t likely to make it to page 15 of that C-Suite whitepaper to see what’s in it for them.

Kathi Gray, Digital Marketing Manager at OpenText, says expanding her target audiences to include influencers and other Buying Group personas has been a key challenge in the information management giant’s push to digital-first marketing. A relationship with OpenText represents a major investment for most customers, and so the focus has always been on the C-Suite and their need for the big picture, Gray says. But channels like social and programmatic display are driven by quick-but-powerful messaging that starts a conversation – or sometimes lets a smart marketer edge into an ongoing discourse.

Gray says intent data is more important now than ever in identifying what prospects really want to talk about. Marketers have to be eager to listen and adapt, she says, and they need to regularly revisit their increasingly complex digital campaigns to optimize for what’s working.

Episode Insights

  • Insight #1: This whole digital-only thing is going to work itself out. Gray is obviously an advocate for digital-FIRST marketing, but she also concedes that the pandemic accelerated the digital revolution to an extreme that will probably level itself off a bit once the world returns to some sense of normalcy. She definitely sees the return of in-person sales calls, but with a strong foundation laid in advance with highly personalized digital outreach. Intent will play an increasingly important role here, she says, as sales will need to get its bearing in the ongoing digital conversation not only with their own marketing team, but the competition, as well.

  • Insight #2. First-person and zero-person data will become even more critical as the gold standard for marketing intelligence. As digital marketing becomes more personalized – and the impending death of the third-party cookie becomes a reality – surveys, structured feedback loops and focus panels with prospects will become increasingly important in tailoring content for key Buying Group roles. “We're having to really dig deeper and make them think about it, and they tell us, ‘What I really need is software that can do this,” Gray says. “And it's like, oh, we can help with that.”

  • Insight #3: Reporting in a challenge for everybody. Data and systems integration, particularly between the CRM and marketing email platform, is a critical component for any marketing team. But Grays also stresses that having all the data in one place is not enough – you also need to be able to access critical campaign and customer metrics in real-time. Even at a multi-million company like OpenText, Gray says marketers often find themselves scrambling to piece together data points. An up-front investment in robust reporting dashboards is essential to effective multi-channel digital optimization.

Key Takeaways

What you will learn from Kathi Gray’s episode?

  • How optimizing multi-channel digital strategies is a continuous process of reviewing performance metrics and finding the best ways to engage key Buying Group members.
  • Why digital marketing is moving away from its classic mission to “educate” andis focusing on “engaging” prospects around quick, compelling messages.
  • Why digital-first communication has actually led to building stronger relationships with customers and co-workers.

Guest Profile