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UNDERSTANDING BUYING BEHAVIOR IN THE NEW DIGITAL AGE

Customer-Centric

Confusing Customer Segmentation, Buyer Profiling, and Buyer Personas Harms Marketing

In the 15 years since originating the concept of buyer personas in 2001, there has been one issue that continues to plague fully understanding exactly where, how, and why buyer personas can be beneficial.  Compounding the issue today is the prevalent use of the term buyer persona to describe customer segmentation and buyer profiling efforts.   The issue I am referring to is the confusion that can surround distinguishing between customer segmentation, buyer profiling, and buyer personas today. If you are a CMO or a marketer and you find yourself having a sudden realization that perhaps you are not quite sure…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

Are Your Buyer Personas Data Overkill?

As the concept of buyer personas has crept into the conscious of both B2C and B2B Marketing, so has misguided representations of buyer personas become prevalent.  With many touted frameworks and processes being representative of buyer personas in name only.  These misrepresentations have also led to a tendency to throw everything, including the kitchen sink, into crafting buyer personas. For example, an organization I helped recently had previously utilized a framework, labeled buyer persona in name only, which consisted of a matrix of 15 plus categories.  Why do I say labeled in name only?  This approach of having 15 plus…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

How B2B CMOs Can Achieve Customer-Centric Marketing With Buyer Personas

A recent survey by B2B Marketing, in conjunction with the UK-based agency Tomorrow People, indicated only 38% of marketers considered their content to be “very customer-centric.”  This mirrors findings of other surveys related to content marketing and customer-centric marketing, which consistently hovers in the 35- 40% range of “very customer-centric” or “very effective content marketing.” In this same survey mentioned above, it was found 50% or more of marketers surveyed have not engaged in researching and creating buyer personas for their marketing efforts.  Although the concept of buyer personas were founded nearly 14 years ago, the maturity of buyer persona…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

What CMOs Need To Know About Listening To The Customer

It is a generally accepted notion that listening is vital to having positive and healthy interpersonal relationships. Listening is an essential skill for leaders in business, politics, sports, and in many different aspects of culture and society.  As a country, we have had many leaders rise to the occasion upon their ability to listen and connect with people and their causes. For CMOs today, listening to customers has become one of the key ingredients shaping their success in connecting brands with customers.  Expanding the growth of their customer base is predicated, to a high degree, on having listening be an active…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

Intervention: Buyer Personas Are Not A Product Requirements Document

Product centricity is still kicking dust up in the perfect storm of changing buyer behaviors and transforming digital technologies. The dust up so thick, most organizations believe they may be responding to this perfect storm, yet, everything they do does scream products. A good case in point is what organizations believe they need to do or are told what to do with developing buyer personas. Unfortunately, companies are being misguided on the intent and methodology behind buyer persona development. Where the end game is still about pushing the product onto a target buyer. Let me illustrate with a couple of…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

The Missing Link Between Business, Marketing, And Customer Strategy: Buyer Personas

One significant change in the past few years is the top of mind presence of the customer on the part of CEOs. The mandate of “getting closer to the customer” has never been stronger. Various surveys point to CEOs linking business growth to increasing customer engagement efforts, growing their customer base, and improving customer retention. With existing customers and prospective buyers metamorphosing into more digitally inclined buyers, organizations are faced with uncertainty about who represents their buyers. Causing CEOs and the C-Suite to ponder how they should align their overall business strategies with customer strategies.   Linking business growth strategies to…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

Stop Business Speak And Simplify Insights To Achieve Customer Centricity

Many executives today are struggling in two areas.  One is in formulating strategies designed to help their organization stand out in a crowded field.  The second is in creating an enterprise adept with deep customer insights and understanding, which translates into obsessed customer focus.  When struggling in these two areas, executives and their organizations can find themselves in a turbulent whirlpool dragging them and their customers into further states of confusion. Wrapped In A State Of Business Speak Depending on the circumstances and the people involved, you sometimes wonder if people are wired with a switch in their brains to…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

7 Big Questions For B2B Marketing Leaders in 2015

Another year and more questions facing B2B Marketing Leaders. We are faced with a rapidly changing digital economy and evolving buyer behaviors. Challenging the best plans and intentions drawn up for 2015.  Each year begets a new set of questions, which confront B2B organizations and B2B Marketing Leaders. Let us take a look at 7 very pressing questions: Do we really know our buyers and customers? A few decades ago, the famed management guru Peter Drucker stated one of the most important question a business has to answer is: Who is our customer? For CMO’s and marketing leaders, this remains…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

4 B2B Marketing Trends To Plan For In 2015

The classic novel A Tale Of Two Cities by Charles Dickens begins with these most famous words and phrases: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness……… it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair…we had everything before us, we had nothing before us… These famous words and phrases may very well describe how many B2B organizations as well as marketers and sellers felt in 2014. The year 2014 displayed unabated rapid changes in buying behaviors and in how B2B…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito

Radical Openness And Transparency: A Mandate For B2B Organizations

November 2014 marked the twenty-fifth (25th) anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The tearing down of the barrier separating West Germany from East Germany remains as one of the world’s most momentous events.   The fall of the Berlin Wall continues to send out tremors touching many parts of the globe. What many in the world assumed would be a smoothed unification of West and East Germany has not occurred. For example, the former East Germany continues to suffer from rampant high unemployment, less educational opportunities, and poorer healthcare systems. In the same twenty-five years, we have seen the advent…

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Tony
Article by Tony Zambito
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