Hello, fellow B2B marketing nerds! Today, I’d like to share some of the cool things the PathFactory marketing team is doing in the B2B digital marketing space. (And trust me, only a true nerd would call these things cool.) In this post, I specifically address the love/hate relationship marketing teams typically have with their sales counterparts–and how to make it more of a love/love one by enabling content bingeing. The word ‘bingeing’ may sound familiar from your B2C lives (“I totally binged on Season 2 of Stranger Things on Netflix last night!”), but it’s not often used to describe B2B experiences… until now. Let me explain.
The importance of enabling content bingeing in B2B
Think about why we binge-watch our favorite Netflix shows; We have a genuine interest. An appetite to consume another episode and then another. And Netflix makes it oh-so-easy to easily spend hours consuming. With each consecutive episode served up immediately and personalized, spot-on recommendations, a binge-fest often ensues.
Netflix binge-watching and B2B content bingeing aren’t all that different from each other. Think about it: If a B2B buyer has a genuine interest in your brand, a hunger to learn and self-educate, and a burning problem that you can help solve, they will consume more of your content in one session if given the opportunity. The problem is, they often aren’t given that opportunity. The ‘next best asset’ is often buried in a content hub, hiding behind a gate, or queued up in an email nurture touch for the following week. In short, not a very binge-able experience for truly interested prospects.
And if B2B buyers binge on content like we binge-watch Netflix (and trust me, they do!), the timing of the follow-up is essential. You have to catch engaged prospects in the act of self-educating when they are highly motivated to learn more and your brand is top-of-mind. This concept is supported by numerous reports that have shown that connect rates are highest when you follow up on hot leads immediately after they interact.
The power of the binge: Empowering BDRs and Sales
PathFactory recently revamped our lead-to-revenue process and now operate like a well-oiled machine: MQLing leads and passing them to our squad of Business Development Reps who, in turn, pass SQLs over to Sales to close things out. This is an industry-standard process but, here at PathFactory, we level-up the process by offering our BDR and Sales teams real Content Insight mined from content bingeing experiences. Offering them real engagement data, like how long an individual spent on which assets. This empowers them to have more productive conversations and move leads through the funnel faster.
As marketers, our collective definition of the marketing qualified lead (MQL) is an important one. Yet most lead qualification models don’t allocate scores based on a person’s actual level of self-education or interest. What if a prospect is bingeing on your content, spending several minutes consuming an eBook for example, but they haven’t done enough separate activities cumulatively to be flagged as an MQL? On the flip side, say they mindlessly clicked on a few things but didn’t actually spend any meaningful time with any one piece of content, yet MQLd anyway? Traditional lead scoring models don’t take time into account. And that’s a big problem.
It wasn’t long ago that the term digital body language was coined by Paul Teshima and Steve Woods, co-founders of Eloqua and Nudge.ai. At its core, digital body language is about tracking all digital activities–like clicks and downloads–that someone makes on their journey.
Considering “time spent” takes it a step further. What happens after a buyer clicks on your content offers? How they engage with your content assets on the destination side of that click allows major blanks to be filled – think of it like a new and improved 2.0 version of digital body language. Taking a critical look at exactly how long people are spending on your content has a profound impact on the funnel. PathFactory customer data proves this: prospects who show signs of content bingeing are 2x more likely to convert from MQL to SQL. Food for thought.
How PathFactory handles content bingers
So, the first step is identifying your content bingers. But then what? At PathFactory we call content bingers “Fast Moving Buyers” (FMB)–anyone who spends over 90 seconds on at least 3 content assets. An FMB is someone who is blowing through content like it’s going out of style, but whose behavior hasn’t necessarily met your MQL threshold yet. Because we track the actual amount of time people spent reading or watching content, and not simply clicks as proxies for engagement, we’re able to get a clearer picture of how engaged someone actually is.
When a prospect becomes an FMB, we’ll send an alert like this to our sales teams to let them know we’ve caught someone in the act of content bingeing.
At that point, the rep can make a judgment call about whether it makes sense to follow-up with the person (but in the majority of cases, they’ll call.) And because they’re alerted in real time, they are able to do a few important things:
- They can connect in a more timely way than they would have been able to otherwise because they’re catching people in that moment of self-education
- They can have very specific, productive conversations since they already know what topics the individual is interested in
- They can tailor the conversation based on the prospect’s firmographic, demographic, and technographic profile
Identifying fast-moving buyers has proven to be an effective strategy to communicate content bingeing to our sales team:
- Our primary top-of-funnel nurture responses who also FMB’d were 1.6x more likely to be accepted by the sales team than the baseline
- Across all of our inbound marketing in 2017, 32% of those who agreed to a first meeting FMB’d.
Clearly, people are way more likely to agree to a call when they’ve been using your brand’s content to self-educate.
Taking it a step further with automation
FMB alerts are cool and all, but us Pathies like to take things a step further. We want to put meaningful content insights in the hands of anyone who has CRM access. At PathFactory, we utilize an integration between our platform and Marketo to do this. This way, when a rep is looking at a prospect they can see, at-a-glance, the person’s recent engagement activity – what they’ve been reading and how much time they’re spending on it– so they can tailor their follow-ups.
Using strategies like this help us crush our marketing goals every quarter. We consistently end up way ahead of our Marketing-driven SQO goals. Regardless of what technology you use today, it’s important to pay attention to your prospects’ content consumption behavior to identify who is bingeing and who is not. Because people who binge are more likely to be sales-ready. And you gotta catch ‘em while they’re hot and actively engaging with your content.
Until next time fellow marketing geeks! Now go forth and continue your campaign construction, dashboard daydreams, and process perfecting.