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Three Trends in B2B Buyer Behavior and How to Generate Quality Leads by Addressing Them

by Markus Linder  |  
January 4, 2018
  |  3,943 views

Generating qualified leads remains a top challenges for B2B marketers: 77% of B2B marketers said improving lead quality was their top priority in 2017—more important than increasing the quantity of leads (41%) or reducing costs (24%)—according to a survey by Ascend2.

In turn, DemandGenReport's 2017 B2B survey highlighted three trends that vendors need to consider to earn the attention and gain the trust of modern B2B buyers:

  1. Relevant content is the key: 75% of B2B buyers said it is very important that the vendor's website present relevant content that speaks directly to their company; 66% said it is very important that the website address the needs of their industry.
  2. Buyers expect customized content relevant to their needs regardless of whether the supplier has access to their personal information: 71% of buyers expect an experience tailored to their individual interests and needs even if they conduct an anonymous search.
  3. Buyers become more risk-averse: They focus more on risk mitigation, especially as the number of stakeholders involved in buying decisions increases along with the length and complexity of the buying journeys.

This article will discuss how B2B businesses can address those key trends to improve the quality of their lead-generation efforts.

1. Buyer Personas: Key to Personalization

B2B suppliers that use personalized content in the marketing and sales process reap great benefits. According to a survey conducted by Seismic and Demand Metric, over 60% of B2B businesses that use a content personalization strategy consider it more effective than non-personalized content.


Seismic and Demand Metric define five types of personalization strategies:

  1. Segment-specific: personalized by industry vertical or segment criteria
  2. Persona-specific: personalized for specific buyer types
  3. Stage-specific: personalized for a stage of the buying process
  4. Account-specific: personalized for a specific prospect organization
  5. Lead-specific: personalized for an individual lead

The data suggest that persona-specific personalization is typically more efficient than personalizing content for an individual company or lead. Referral SaaS Squatch defines five components of building a successful buyer persona:

  • Role in the buying process
  • Fears and challenges
  • Drivers and motivators
  • Organizational goal and priorities
  • Problems and issues


Example of a buyer persona that you can use in your personalization strategy (Source: Mycustomer.com)


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Markus Linder is the chief executive officer and a co-founder of SMARTASSISTANT, provider of digital advice and guided selling technologies for retailers, brands, telcos, and other service providers.

LinkedIn: Markus Linder

Twitter: @markuslinder

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