Article | by Alan Cooper

Personalisation in the Non-Sexy, Non-Ecommerce World of B2B Manufacturing

Originally published on Digital Doughnut on 23 November 2018

 

  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. The challenge facing non-transactional B2B websites
  3. 3. Understanding the audience is key to applying the right technology
  4. 4. Bring on the smart technology
  5. 5. Key takeaways and summary

 

  

Remember the 1980s, 90s, Noughties? There was this thing called “marketing nirvana,” which was also coined “1:1 marketing.” Marketers were anticipating the day when they could deliver a targeted message directly to a potential customer, delivering an experience completely tailored to them.

 

Fast forward a few connectivity, bandwidth, device and Moore’s law cycles and lo and behold we have “personalisation” deeply ingrained into customer or user experience (CX/UX).

 

There’s absolutely no doubt that we’re closer to the 1:1 zenith. Buying a pair of trainers has never been more me.

It’s still the marketer’s nirvana, but now it feels within reach. As consumers, we can set our own preferences and identify what we like – and not just on Tinder. As marketers, we can personalise through data, neuroscience, behavioural analysis and, of course, through direct application of artificial intelligence (AI) technology in all its guises.

There’s absolutely no doubt that we’re closer to the 1:1 zenith. Buying a pair of trainers has never been more me.

Still, let’s look across the divide to a different world where a company is in the business of – let’s say – building and servicing oil rigs. I’m no expert in the subject, but I suspect there are tens of people involved in the selling and buying process – probably hundreds throughout the supply chain. That’s a whole lot of personalisation.  

There are similarities with the B2C or B2B commerce model, but even Amazon would struggle to make deliveries for “people who specified a North Sea oil rig, went on to specify an offshore rig in the Gulf of Mexico” and their colleagues exhibiting similar behaviour two months later.

 

The challenge facing non-transactional B2B websites

B2B organizations who have no online transactional model; particularly in manufacturing, technology and service, are faced with this challenge. Despite huge digital transformation projects happening internally, which are streamlining their businesses, it’s still a massive challenge to serve digital content to all the required audiences at the right time. These transformations often have customer experience as a driver but delivering that experience via the website is just plain tough.

Often these businesses are limited to communicating through owned channels of their website and social handles. To the best of our knowledge there’s no “rate my oil rig” on Trustpilot. You need to place much more emphasis on quality and range of content to engage with these hyper-niche audiences, even before considering the technology needed.

“B2B organizations who have no online transactional model; particularly in manufacturing, technology and service will often have customer experience as a driver but delivering that experience via the website is just plain tough.”

 

Written in partnership with Episerver

✅Read the rest of the article on Digital Doughnut.

Work with us.

Alan
Cooper

New Business Director

Alan is Freestyle’s Founder and New Business Director. Get in touch with him for more information on the work we do, Freestyle Partners (DAM) and your upcoming project.

01926 652060

alan.cooper@freestyle.agency

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