Product Marketing Rule #3: Learn from Your Customers’ Digital Body Language

42 Rules of Product Marketing Facebook

Product Marketing Rule #3 from the best-selling book, 42 Rules of Product Marketing, was written by Steven Woods, Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder, Eloqua

Each of these actions, the user’s “digital body language”, can give you insight into who is just kicking the tires, and who is likely to take a step forward and upgrade.

Today’s buyers are different than buyers a decade ago.  Everything they need to learn about your company, your product, and your team, they can learn online.  They are not out there learning by having your sales team educating them, they are learning by sharing perspectives with their peers, or getting hands on experiences with your product itself.

This change leads to an interesting challenge and a great opportunity for today’s product marketers.

The product itself is a key part of the education cycle.  From free trials, to entry level products, to active usage of your main product, every experience a user has with your product is an opportunity to help you understand where they are in considering your offering so that you can guide your messaging strategy accordingly.

The challenge for product marketers is to rethink a communication strategy around the buyer’s online experience.  Buyers should no longer be segmented by demographics or firmographics, and communicated with in large outbound campaigns.  Buyers must be understood in terms of the activity indicators and psychographics that tell you where that person is in their own unique consideration cycle.

The data we now have on buyers is as broad as it is insightful.

Have they logged in for the first time?  Have they configured their account?   Have they taken the first action that you want them to in the product?  Have they tried to use a feature that was disabled because it was only available in a higher level version of the product?  Each of these actions, the user’s “digital body language”, can give you insight into who is just kicking the tires, and who is likely to take a step forward and upgrade.

Each communication path you have with potential buyers should leverage this insight by helping that individual buyer try more, learn more or consider purchasing your product.  Without this insight, using only the broad market segments that define industries and roles, you are left with undifferentiated mass communication and are merely hoping to connect the right message with a buyer at the right point of consideration.

Taken one level further, the insights that the sales and marketing team gain on each person and organization who is considering your product could easily be fed back into the product experience itself and used to focus messaging, offers, and education within the product.  It is also vital to the sales team, who can establish a strong working relationship by referencing the prospect’s activities such as whitepapers or free demos instead of having to make a blind inquiry and trying to extract information that the prospect has already provided to your company.

For today’s buyer, the product itself is the core of the buying process.

As a product marketer, understanding this point and building a messaging plan that leverages an understanding of where a buyer is in their consideration cycle, based on their actions, is core to product marketing that successfully guides potential buyers from the earliest stages of awareness and education through to consideration, purchase, and continued growth as a client.

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