I have seen people go crazy on this exercise, but I recommend keeping it simple. While it’s ideal to have specific personas for every person involved in the buying process – it is fine to start with two or three key personas, and work through the process.
For example, for if you are selling technical software - you will have the user, the influencer and the buyer.
This is a really important step to go through is the exercise to really get to know your buyers.
Step 2: Map out what the journey of your buyer persona looks like
This is a very important exercise and as you can see from this image, the process can be complex --- but boil it down to something manageable:
Awareness Consideration Purchase
Step 3: Once you have the stages for your personas –ask, what do they need at that stage?? Put yourself in their shoes and think about what information you would need.
Step 4: Map your content to the right buying stage.
I really like thinking of the dating analogy for this exercise. You would not ask someone to marry you on your first date.
Think about what you are asking your buyers. The majority are probably not ready to sign up for an online trial if they are unfamiliar with your company.
Step 5 – Lastly, - Understand what you ALREADY have. Perform a content audit. You may find you have a lot of great early stage content, but maybe you have less for late stage.
Also, make sure to be honest – if an asset is very out dated – you may need to retire it.
>>At this point a lot of people freak out because it can feel like you need a lot of new assets for lead gen Many of us are faced with limited resources, time, etc. and the thought of developing a lot of great content is overwhelming.
How do you plan what content you need for your programs? How should you think about content per channel? How do you optimize it?
That’s where lean content creation comes in…..
Let’s go over a few tips!
Keep in mind, content is not just white papers or eBooks!
Can be simple and short blog posts, 4 minute videos, infographics, etc.
1. Subject line – from convince and convert 33% open on subject line alone
2. We know emails do better if they are personal, human, and timely – so think how your content offer fits into that framework
Relevant and vetted offer for the audience - have an understanding of what your buyer has done and where they are in the buying cycle Test! A/B split – offer one and offer two - A/B Testing isn’t about what YOU like, it’s about what your audience responds to
Think about your blog. Do you have a good methodology for collecting names? By adding the sign up for email updates we saw a nice lift.
From average 14 a week to 145/week - 10X growth!
Demand Generation Engagement with database Keep Marketo top of mind
Specifically – content: Strategies and tips from thought leaders, partners, and industry veterans Exposure to new marketing paradigms and practices Interactive networking with similar companies in the marketing community
Lastly, I will touch on content syndication. Content syndication is another popular channel used to generate leads online. Content syndication is a method by which pieces of content, they can be articles, white papers, ebooks, are shared with permission from the writer.
Here are some tips for consideration: 1. Use mid-stage content – this way you are selecting leads that are further along in the buying cycle. 2. Gate content – using forms 3. Have system integration. I set up all Content Syndication programs this way to names instantly are updated in Marketo – versus waiting for a vendor to send you and Excel doc. 4. Get credit. What I mean by this, is just make sure your content is branded so there is no confusion about who it is coming from. 5. Double check your names to make sure they are new. You do not want to pay for names you already have. 6. And lastly, check in with your vendors to see how often they get fresh prospects so your content is not circling the drain with the same folks.
Here we see what works for Marketo over the last 12 months to generate prospects. (great place to start – need to then dive in further and understand where content is performing or underperforming)
Website+Blog = 38% of all opps
But I’d be a bad stock picker if I put all my money in one stock, and I’d be a bad marketer if I bet all my prospect generation on one source.
The reality is you need a portfolio of prospects and channels to achieve the best results. In fact, Marketo runs an average of 40 different Prospect generating programs each and every month across all these sources.