3 years ago I led a panel on demand generation. When I asked everyone on the panel to provide one tip, my friend Tom Scearce said: “In honor of Peter Tosh, my advice to b2b marketers is ‘humanize it’”. Brilliant. Number one, he found a way to weave Peter Tosh into a b2b marketing conversation (of course, his song/mantra was “legalize it” but this is a family-friendly blog). Number 2, it’s a great point: humanizing your interactions with buyers should be a priority across all customer-facing practices (sales, marketing, customer service). Make your interactions about them not about you. I know you have heard it before, but it’s true. As you look at all the touches you make to a prospect, ask yourself where you can humanize it by personalizing it. From the immortal words of the Cheers theme song: “You want to go where everybody knows your name”.
Personally, I give points to anyone who personalizes their communications with me. Point blank. If you can’t relate to this, let me just tell you — it makes a difference. A big one. Let me give you an example, we interviewed a number of buyers for an enterprise software company to understand their experience with this vendor. We asked them for the most important piece of content they received during the buying process. The buyers identified the personalized demo. (They didn’t read whitepapers, etc) When we dug, they all mentioned the fact that the vendor used their name, their numbers, and their process when showing them the product. One buyer demo’d 14 different solutions and gave this vendor the advantage because of the demo. She said: “It showed they knew us intimately.” This is the kind of reaction you want across the entire buying experience.
Let’s look at three examples of personalization that makes a difference:
The Personalized Web Experience
FYI, I decided to write this post after I went to the Demandbase user conference a couple weeks ago. #inspiration. First of all, it was a great conference. Secondly, if they want to channel their inner-Peter Tosh, they could go with “personalize it”. I love their ability to personalize the web experience. I jump off websites in seconds..but if you channel my “inner-me”, I gotta stay.
The Personalized Webinar Follow-up
For the Funnelholic Sales Summit, Switch Video leveraged their Switch Merge technology to send personalized video as webinar reminders to our participants. We saw 10-15% increase in attendance. Why? It was about them, for them, and sent in a completely differentiated format. #personalizeit
The Personalized Email
Email is the voicemail of the modern outbound prospecting era. Armed with tools such as YesWare, Toutapp, and MyDocket, sales is sending emails to prospects at record rates. The emails that win are customized to the person they are sending to. (If you haven’t heard that before, you have been living in a cave). These emails are critical part of the humanized buying experience. Step one is to make sure you use their name. Step two is to find 1-3 tidbits about the recipient and connects you back to what’s happening in their business. I grabbed this great email from the Vorsight blog. #humanizeit
It’s actually pretty fun when you start to think of the possibilities. So if you can, you should — Humanize it.
Peter Tosh pic came from this web page which also has a tribute to the man