Introducing Sitecore CDP in a B2B context

Personalization has always been a defining aspect of the B2B experience. However, before the dawn of the (modern) internet, most B2B buying happened face-to-face through visits to offices, warehouses, and showrooms. And of course, there was the chief piece of collateral that, literally, put sellers and buyers on the same page: an endless supply of catalogs, catalogs, and yet more catalogs.

However, the emergence of online shopping, online banking, and a growing roster of B2C disrupters (e.g., Uber, Airbnb) has dramatically shifted expectations among consumers — and by extension, changed the paradigm of the B2B landscape.

Today’s B2B buyers — whether they are in the market for software, hardware, equipment, professional services, or anything else — now want the same frictionless, digitally-driven experience as their B2C counterparts; but without sacrificing personalization. And that is why they are turning to, and putting their trust in, Sitecore CDP.

Sitecore CDP is built with three layers — segmentation, decisioning, and optimization — that enable B2B sellers to turn unforgettable personalization at scale from a conceptual aspiration into a pragmatic reality:

  • The segmentation layer can be called the “engine” of Sitecore CDP. It tracks each click, search, and buying signal from both known and anonymous customer profiles. It also consolidates and connects all customer data in one place, builds customer profiles and segments with real-time data, and integrates data seamlessly from across the organization.
  • The decisioning layer can be called the “brain” of Sitecore CDP. It uses predictive analytics, AI, and machine learning to drive positive interactions across the customer journey. In addition, the decisioning layer leverages customer and business data alongside real-time context, uses decisioning technology for data-driven decisions and supports A/B testing for any digital channel.
  • The optimization layer can be called the “hub” of Sitecore CDP. It orchestrates all interactions across all channels, delivers hyper-relevant experiences for every customer, and triggers personalized messaging to persuade and motivate customers to take desired actions (including micro conversions that ultimately culminate in a transaction).

Working together, these three layers provide B2B sellers with a 360-degree view of their customers at every point in their journey, which opens the door to offering content and experiences that make them feel seen, valued, and understood. That makes all the difference in cultivating robust, long-term relationships.

Leveraging Sitecore CDP for account-based marketing (ABM)

In essence, ABM is a framework and strategy in which sales and marketing teams collaborate to identify, target, and optimize high-value accounts through the delivery of highly relevant, personalized, and streamlined sales cycles.

This latter advantage of ABM is especially vital and valuable, because it means accelerating the early stages of the sales cycle (attract and nurture), which can dramatically increase the likelihood of conversions.

Simply put: sales teams spend less time, money, and effort to onboard more profitable and engaged customers, and marketing teams optimize resources and maximize results. The potential impact is more than just positive, it can be completely game-changing: 97% of marketers say that ABM delivers higher ROI than other marketing activities.

Sitecore CDP takes ABM to the next level by unleashing account-based experience (ABX). This is a next-generation go-to-market strategy that leverages a combination of Sitecore CDP and other tools and platforms in the ecosystem — such as those that drive and govern conversational marketing, sales outreach, marketing automation, and more — to automate and orchestrate account-based experiences.

For customers, the power of ABX is the seamless combination of personalization, relevance, and responsiveness. Customers get the most useful information at the right time, and without having to click repeatedly or fill out multiple forms.

For sellers, the power of ABX is that it enables a “zero waste” approach: marketing and sales teams can focus with laser-like precision on accounts that are in-market for their solutions, and therefore represent the greatest immediate revenue potential.

Ultimately, ABX enables a unified and personalized experience for customers throughout the buyer’s journey and lifecycle: from the moment they first interact with a brand, to after they become satisfied customers and loyal advocates.

Data-driven insights for B2B sales and marketing

Historically, marketing and sales organizations face many obstacles to working seamlessly together — especially in an efficient and effective way — due to the proliferation of data siloes that block rather than enhance collaboration. Basically, any tool can trigger or enlarge a data silo. Over time, these obstacles become part of the environment itself, and can even become the dominant characteristic.

Sitecore CDP leverages data orchestration to eliminate data silos, and establish less-fragmented, easy-to-access data streams. Getting rid of data silos also means that engineers and data scientists no longer have to deal with tedious, complex, and time-consuming overnight manual batch data processes that often clog workflows, and lead to mutually-unpleasant early morning calls to IT (is that cheering and celebrating we hear in the background?).

Sitecore CDP breaks down the process of building a cohesive and streamlined data orchestration workflow into five steps:

  1. Connecting multiple data sources, which could include data from engagements happening on a website, with customer service, on ad platforms, etc. The data is checked for integrity, correctness, and labeling, and as necessary can enhance new third-party data with existing database information.
  2. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning to consolidate cross-channel and cross-device data into a real-time view of each customer.
  3. Cleansing data and ensuring that it is reliable by removing old leads, purging duplicate and corrupt records, and updating outdated information.
  4. Creating deeper insights into each customer by aggregating all data, including information housed by third-party systems.
  5. Analyzing customer actions and trends by processing data from social media, the web, and other sources to determine which products appeal to specific segments.

Sitecore CDP combines the core data management capabilities of an advanced CDP with intelligent decisioning and data orchestration. Instead of crashing into data silos, marketing, and sales teams generate reliable and robust data-driven insights that enable them to communicate, collaborate, and cooperate on what matters most: making decisions that support the delivery of unforgettable, hyper-relevant personalized content and experiences across all channels and touchpoints, throughout the end-to-end customer journey.

Measuring B2B success with Sitecore CDP

What does B2B success with Sitecore CDP look like in the real world? Naturally, each organization faces specific challenges, objectives, and priorities, and these will ultimately define and drive results that are unique to them and their scenarios.

However, generally speaking, all organizations can expect to see measurable gains — and in many cases to a dramatic extent — in the following areas:

  • More accurate customer profiles that help eliminate guesswork and gaps in understanding customer needs.
  • Precise customer segmentation that drives new and better ways to understand the audience.
  • Real-time decisioning that increases conversion rates and drives campaign performance.
  • A more consistent customer experience that builds long-term loyalty, and turns satisfied customers into advocates and brand ambassadors.
  • More efficient data science and marketing operations that accelerate time-to-value of the organization’s digital transformation initiative.
  • Stronger governance through discovering and documenting which customers have given their consent to receive marketing messages.
  • Improved customer service efforts thanks to a clear understanding of each customer’s history with the brand, and all the relevant details of the present situation.
  • More accurate calculations and predictions of customer lifetime value (CLV) in key segments, so that marketing and sales teams can prioritize the most valuable audiences.
  • Gathering customer insights to guide future product development decisions.

Again, it is important to point out that each organization will see improvements in areas that are most important to them, and are therefore targeted accordingly. However, it is typical for organizations that implement Sitecore CDP (in some cases along with other Sitecore solutions) to check all of these boxes, and establish a new standard and era of high-performance B2B marketing and sales.

The final word

Forrester analysts correctly point out that being customer-obsessed cannot simply be a motivational slogan. Rather, it must be an active, energized, and ceaseless “call to action for B2B marketers to reexamine and redefine how they’re using personalization not to increase tactic conversion rates, but to put the customer first.”

Sitecore CDP enables and empowers marketers to join forces with sales teams, so they can consistently and seamlessly deliver customers the most relevant and personalized content and experiences in-the-moment across devices, channels, and touchpoints, throughout the end-to-end customer journey.

Indeed, putting customers first and establishing them at the heart of an organization’s B2B strategy is not just vital for success in the short term. Considering that competitors are just a click or tap away, it is essential for survival in the long run.

Schedule a personalized demo to discover how Sitecore CDP transforms data silos into winning customer experiences for some of the world’s largest and most successful B2B organizations.