Content Avalanche! How to Enrich — Not Engulf — Your Customers With Information

4 minutes
Nov 04, 2021
Account-Based ExperienceDigital Marketing

According to a recent Gartner study, more than two-thirds of B2B buyers feel a bit overwhelmed by the amount of high-quality research material available to them — especially on the...

ContentAvalanche

According to a recent Gartner study, more than two-thirds of B2B buyers feel a bit overwhelmed by the amount of high-quality research material available to them — especially on the internet.

Interestingly, Gartner also found that 77% of B2B buyers rate their purchase experiences as extremely complex or difficult. The content’s great, but the journey is challenging. What’s with the disconnect?

Our own research indicates that, in a way, great content takes its toll on buyers. As they uncover layer upon layer of information — all presented through the unique lenses of competing solutions —buyers’ understanding of what actually matters often gets lost in the weeds.

Rational decision-making withers into gut feelings. Deals can stall … or vanish altogether. That’s a lose-lose for everyone involved.

We recently surveyed our own customers, keen to identify the pain points they experienced when they began to seriously consider revenue technology platforms like 6sense. Their top pain? An overwhelming amount of information.

It’s Not Necessarily Your Content. It’s All Content

The problem isn’t content quality. It’s content quantity. The amount of educational material available to buyers is staggering. For instance:

Large Buying Groups Amplify the Dilemma

Gartner says that about 11 people are involved in a typical B2B purchase. This jibes with our own research. In a recent 500-person survey we co-conducted, 65% of buyers said their sales cycles were getting longer, included more decision makers, or both.

This often brings confusion to the sales process. Some stakeholders might reel from the sheer volume of information available to them. Others could be overwhelmed by the challenge of reaching a consensus. It goes on.

It’s important to understand that, as B2B marketers and sellers, the content we’re providing prospects isn’t being seen through a single lens. It’s being viewed through a kaleidoscope, often informed by competing interests.

Changing a certain sales message may bring clarity to one part of the prism, but distort another.

So What’s the Answer?

Solving the content-relevancy question isn’t about “How much content do we create?” It’s much more about “who” and “when” — identifying your ideal prospects and finding the right time to engage them with the proper content.

This means you gotta know a lot about your buyers. This is the kind of knowledge that hails from deep, specific, data-backed insights. This information is impossible to obtain firsthand. It requires a savvy combination of historical and as-it-happens buyer information, available in a database for immediate and ongoing analysis.

Armed with this kind of intent data, your revenue team can answer vital questions such as:

  • Which specific roles within specific target accounts could influence the buying process?
  • What did their process consist of for recent, similar purchases?
  • What answers do they seek based on what’s known about their company size, job title, buying stage, and search history?
  • And more

The Value of Anticipating Buyers’ Needs

Account-Based Marketing has become a go-to strategy to help mitigate these ever-growing buying teams and buying timelines. ABM empowers sellers to hyper-target individual stakeholders within an account and deliver ultra-focused, relevant content — predicated on useful data — that can aid a group-based buying decision.

Some folks squirm when they read phrases like hyper-target and ultra-focused, but don’t worry. Most buyers don’t see these activities as prying. According to Salesforce, two-thirds of B2B buyers expect companies to anticipate and address their needs.

This practice helps revenue teams, too. When you can serve the right kind of content to the right prospects at the precisely the right time, you minimize (or downright eliminate) junk leads, time-wasting tire kickers, and other distractions.

Once you’ve embraced that more productive — and to be honest, more humane —  ethos, your organization immediately stands out as a provider of high-value signal in an internet filled with confusing, wrongheaded noise.

That’s the kind of brand credibility that attracts the right kind of prospects and quickly closes deals.