It’s been defined as “getting to know your audience”, “better understanding your target”, among other things. No matter what you call it, micro-targeting as a growing trend has been generating attention lately in B2B marketing circles.

Broadly defined, micro-targeting basically means getting rid of your “one-to-many playbook” in order to customize and personalize marketing strategies for specific potential buyers. Micro-targeting for B2B business is:

  • Relevant
  • One-on-one
  • Individualized
  • Responsive
  • Targeted
  • Personal

What is Micro-Targeting?

The unique culture of the B2B industry requires marketers to know and understand the needs of both the individual buyer and the company as a whole. Serving more than one single audience requires a strong marketing approach that includes micro-targeting.

Micro-targeting is an approach traditionally used in politics as parties work to direct their messages at specific areas of the population in order to secure the win. By combining statistics and research with data on purchasing habits, political parties set out to understand their intended audience.

B2C companies are ahead of the B2B industry when it comes to practicing personalization. If you have shopped any big name website, it probably remembers your buying habits and makes suggestions to you about a particular product you may like to purchase next. These companies are focused on individual customers and their needs-and they want to make the sale. Of course, the B2B buying process is different in that there is more than just one person making the decision, which make personalization even more of a challenge.

How to Increase Personalization

  1. Emails: Working to make emails more relevant can increase click-through rates by as much as 14 percent. How personal do your emails sound? Does the address have your name in it, or does it contain a generic company title? We love to hear our names used, and email is no exception.
  2. Landing pages: Of course you want interested leads to leave information, but asking for too much or asking for repeat information can turn prospects off. As an example, asking for a phone number can decrease conversion rates by 6 percent, asking for a street address can lower rates by 4 percent, and asking a potential lead for his or her age can decrease conversion rates by 3 percent. Stick to what you need.
  3. Blog content: Web posts should be geared toward problem-solving and addressing the needs of your intended audience. Focus on keyword and phrases your customers use in order to understand their needs.
  4. Social media: Your business’s presence on social media is a great way to interact with potential customers, allowing you to tailor content and marketing to them. Read comments, take advantage of forums, and be present. You may be surprised at what you find.

Prospects will trust you with information in order to receive a personalized experience, but there has to be a relationship built on trust.

When you eat at a restaurant, you want your food to arrive in a certain order, not dessert, appetizer, dinner. B2B marketing must serve up the right content when the time is right. Your meal in a restaurant is personalized because the server listens, writes it down, tells the cook, and brings it to you. The food is personalized-cooked how you want and modified how you want.  Micro-targeting in B2B marketing means you know when to bring the content, what to bring, and how to present it to the customer.

Micro-targeting may be just a fancy word to describe personalization, but the idea is the same: get to know your audience, serve them well, and reap the results.