#INBOUND1 
4 
Optimizing Engagement with 
Persona-Based Marketing 
Elle Woulfe 
Director of Demand Gen, Lattice Engines
ELLE 
WOULFE 
@ellehwoulfe 
Gratuitous use of a 
cute kid in my 
presentation or highly 
relevant visual?
AGENDA 
1 Putting the Person in Personas 
2 The Persona Venn Diagram 
3 Relevancy Breeds Engagement 
4 Mistakes I Made For...
Putting the Person in Personas 
#INBOUND14
#INBOUND14 
Some of us sell to businesses…
#INBOUND14 
But we all market to people.
Buyers are People. 
We have hobbies. We 
have families. We have 
personalities. We laugh. 
We joke. We are 
human. 
#INBOU...
#INBOUND14 
So Why Does That Get Lost?
#INBOUND14 
Just Your Typical HR Team…
#INBOUND14 
Think again.
#INBOUND14 
Your fairytale… 
My nightmare.
B2B Doesn’t Have to 
Be Boring. 
#INBOUND14
#INBOUND14 
2 Why Personas Matter
#INBOUND14 
Two Buyers - One Goal 
I hope we hit our opportunity 
target this quarter. 
Jenna Keegan 
Marketing Ops 
Manag...
#INBOUND14 
The “Purchase”
#INBOUND14 
Very Different Buying Considerations 
Will this 
make my 
life harder? 
Will this 
keep sales 
off my 
back? 
...
#INBOUND14 
The “Committee Chairman” 
How much does it cost? 
Will we crush the 
competition? 
Will it make me look good?
#INBOUND14 
Never underestimate 
the power of a 
committee member.
#INBOUND14 
3 Make it Relevant
#INBOUND14 
Find the Sweet Spot 
Will this 
make us look 
smart?
For Marketers 
#INBOUND14
#INBOUND14 
For Sales
#INBOUND14 
Persona Based Positioning 
CMO: 
The New Technology Every B2B 
Marketing Exec Must Have 
Marketing Ops: 
Why Y...
#INBOUND14 
TOFU Default Personas
#INBOUND14 
When in Doubt… Be Funny
#INBOUND14 
Find & Exploit the Universal Motivators…
#INBOUND14 
4 Mistakes I Made For You
#INBOUND14 
Just Don’t Fall in Love
#INBOUND14 
Sometimes Channel = Persona
#INBOUND14 
5 Hacks, Tips & Ideas
#INBOUND14 
5 Tips for Maintaining Personas 
1. Always validate your assumptions 
2. Don’t try to fake it 
3. Don’t assume...
#INBOUND14 
5 Hacks & Lessons 
1 Remember the Venn diagram 
2 A single data point isn’t a trend 
3 Death by a thousand pap...
#INBOUND14 
THANK YOU!
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Optimizing Engagement with Persona-Based Marketing - Inbound 2014

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Marketers are all looking for ways to make marketing more meaningful for their audiences. We've all heard of persona-based marketing, but how do we make implement it in a way that delivers a real impact?

Here are the slides that Elle Woulfe, Lattice Engines' director of demand generation, presented at Hubspot's INBOUND 2014 event.

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  • The real goal of personas is to create marketing that is relevant, engaging and that makes an impact. In order to connect with buyers, we need to deeply understand what matters to them… what keeps them up at night, etc.

    And that brings me to Parker. We’ve all been there – at the grocery store, or Target or in line at Starbucks. And there is the screaming child, throwing themselves on the ground and freaking out because they want the candy, the toy, the coffee… no, not the coffee, the cupcake. And now that I’m a parent, I’m allowed to judge. Kidding. But it’s shocking to me how often parents engage in a very irrelevant connversation with these screaming kids. Most often, they respond with anger. Now… if Parker is really upset, me getting angry with her won’t help. To get through to Parker, I need to connect with her in a relevant way. You can’t have the cupcake for breakfast, but what if we buy it and have it after lunch? Or, we’re not here to buy you a toy but we do need a birthday present for your cousin, would you like to pick one out?

    So in some ways, marketing to your buyers is a little like communicating with toddlers.
  • Start with something super foundational.
  • In fact, I bet most of us do.
  • And yet when we’re talking about targeting at the top of the funnel, the people feel abstract. They aren’t people but representations of people and I think that’s why we sometimes lose sight of the people themselves and default to broader based, one-size fits all messages. This is true for B2C as much as B2B. A million 35 year old, single women are still a million people and so the things that make that group very unique might get glossed over in our mass marketing messages.
  • Explain who these people are…
  • They don’t treat us like people. They treat us like corporate cliches.
    How many times have you been targeted with an ad or gotten an email with this kind of boring stock photography? Even companies that do a great job of getting to know their buyer… still resort to very generic, one size fits all messages. At the heart of a great persona is a marketing strategy that connects with buyers… that drives engagement. If you resort to generic marketing tactics, you’re not using your personas the way you should.

    How am I as a buyer supossed to relate to this? It’s kind of lazy. Just because we all get the crystal ball analogy, it doesn’t mean it speaks to buyers on an emotional level. Tell the moneyball story – I like it because it works, but it’s still a little lazy. Pick on some B2C brands or industries that also resort to generic imagery – (pregnant anecdote… didn’t relate to some of the mass marketing) – it’s harder to be clever. It’s harder to find something that people can relate to.
  • Held this assumption… but didn’t spend the time to really get to know the buyer. We understood what drove them, sure. But not some of the more personal or human aspects of their personas. Come to find out, there was more lurking beneath the surface. Our marketing was conservative and a bit buttoned up.
  • And then we learned this and it forced us to rethink our personas. So we interviewed some of them again… and come to find out, they all had this sort of double life. They knew people thought of them as the serious, rule enforcers.
  • Maybe this should say, marketing doesn’t have to be boring. Think about marketing you love and why you love it. Does it tug at your emotions? Does it make you laugh? Chances are, it resonates with you on a personal level.
  • I’m not here to tell you how to create personas… there are a million resources that can show you how to do that. Google it. There are tons of templates and ideas out there if that’s your problem. Going to try to show where the nuances matter and how to actually use them instead of letting them collect dust in dropbox
  • Laser like focus on one goal and one goal only.
  • Talk about what it actually does. And you may be saying, wow – that’s lucky, your target persona is actually yourself? It is but it’s also very deliberate. I have gotten spoiled.
  • Whole bunch of other stuff… where and how I consume information, associations and groups, values, goals, problems, etc.
  • Execs don’t care how easy your life is.
  • Even in B2B… if you sell to Dad, the purchase probably has to get cleared by Mom. If you sell to brides, there is the bride’s mom and bridesmaids and mother-in-law and in some cases, the fiance even has a voice.
  • Fear and personal advancement are always good motivators and they are fairly universal.
  • Personal advancement and fear are great motivators and are fairly universal.
  • But make sure you pay it off within the content too.
  • This works for all our personas because we either are a CMO or care about pleasing one. But we can’t always be targeted at the top of the funnel – you prioritize your most important persona and where you can’t be super targeted, use the message that will resonate most with that audience.
  • This is just about engagement.
  • Didn’t work at DF – don’t force fit just cause it’s a good idea.
  • Square Peg, round hole.
    Didn’t work at DF – don’t force fit just cause it’s a good idea.
  • Sometimes when it’s hard to be targeted (like TOFU or big events) you should focus on the biggest persona opps.
  • 1 Review past purchase data – look for big trends; Stay close to your lead and opportunity data – know who you attract; Interview sales, customers & the ones that got away
    2. You need to walk in their shoes. You need to truly understand what makes them tick, what keeps them up at night. Interview them, lean on VCs for intro, go to meetups, join groups… personas aren’t just for marketing – the most successful sales reps deeply understand their buyers and there is an authenticity to their communications that can’t be faked.
    3. New info will emerge, new buyers will emerge, your company will evolve and grow. Don’t be complacent and assume you have it all figured out. -
    Talk about the marketing associate anecdote at Eloqua
    4. With that said – it’s not rocket surgery. Don’t feel the need to revise just for the sake of revising. Keep it simple.
    5. Stay close to your deals, review opp data to know who was part of a deal.

  • I’ve made these mistakes so you don’t have to!

    #2 – this buyer showed up in this deal. You need more data.

    Personas aren’t just for marketing – they must inform the sales process and sales interactions. The best reps know what makes their buyers tick and they know how to reach them without being annoying. Write three emails for sales targeted at different buyers. Help them speak the language. Dumb down the persona into a battlecard.
  • Optimizing Engagement with Persona-Based Marketing - Inbound 2014

    1. 1. #INBOUND1 4 Optimizing Engagement with Persona-Based Marketing Elle Woulfe Director of Demand Gen, Lattice Engines
    2. 2. ELLE WOULFE @ellehwoulfe Gratuitous use of a cute kid in my presentation or highly relevant visual?
    3. 3. AGENDA 1 Putting the Person in Personas 2 The Persona Venn Diagram 3 Relevancy Breeds Engagement 4 Mistakes I Made For You 5 Five Hacks
    4. 4. Putting the Person in Personas #INBOUND14
    5. 5. #INBOUND14 Some of us sell to businesses…
    6. 6. #INBOUND14 But we all market to people.
    7. 7. Buyers are People. We have hobbies. We have families. We have personalities. We laugh. We joke. We are human. #INBOUND14
    8. 8. #INBOUND14 So Why Does That Get Lost?
    9. 9. #INBOUND14 Just Your Typical HR Team…
    10. 10. #INBOUND14 Think again.
    11. 11. #INBOUND14 Your fairytale… My nightmare.
    12. 12. B2B Doesn’t Have to Be Boring. #INBOUND14
    13. 13. #INBOUND14 2 Why Personas Matter
    14. 14. #INBOUND14 Two Buyers - One Goal I hope we hit our opportunity target this quarter. Jenna Keegan Marketing Ops Manager Elle Woulfe Director of Demand Gen
    15. 15. #INBOUND14 The “Purchase”
    16. 16. #INBOUND14 Very Different Buying Considerations Will this make my life harder? Will this keep sales off my back? Key Initiatives: Success Factors: Perceived Barriers: Buyer’s Journey: Decision Criteria: Optimization & Efficiency Ease of Implementation Time, Complexity, Integration Documentation, Demos Will it really work? Alignment & Volume Increased Conversion Change Management & Adoption Peers, References, Research How soon will it make an impact?
    17. 17. #INBOUND14 The “Committee Chairman” How much does it cost? Will we crush the competition? Will it make me look good?
    18. 18. #INBOUND14 Never underestimate the power of a committee member.
    19. 19. #INBOUND14 3 Make it Relevant
    20. 20. #INBOUND14 Find the Sweet Spot Will this make us look smart?
    21. 21. For Marketers #INBOUND14
    22. 22. #INBOUND14 For Sales
    23. 23. #INBOUND14 Persona Based Positioning CMO: The New Technology Every B2B Marketing Exec Must Have Marketing Ops: Why You Need Predictive Analytics in Your Marketing Technology Stack Demand Gen: The Must-Have Demand Technology to Crush Conversion Rates Sales: How the Best Sales Teams Predict Their Next Customer & Win More Deals
    24. 24. #INBOUND14 TOFU Default Personas
    25. 25. #INBOUND14 When in Doubt… Be Funny
    26. 26. #INBOUND14 Find & Exploit the Universal Motivators…
    27. 27. #INBOUND14 4 Mistakes I Made For You
    28. 28. #INBOUND14 Just Don’t Fall in Love
    29. 29. #INBOUND14 Sometimes Channel = Persona
    30. 30. #INBOUND14 5 Hacks, Tips & Ideas
    31. 31. #INBOUND14 5 Tips for Maintaining Personas 1. Always validate your assumptions 2. Don’t try to fake it 3. Don’t assume you know it all 4. Resist the urge to over-engineer 5. Revisit regularly
    32. 32. #INBOUND14 5 Hacks & Lessons 1 Remember the Venn diagram 2 A single data point isn’t a trend 3 Death by a thousand paper cuts still hurts 4 Don’t let vanity guide you 5 Your job is to help sales sell
    33. 33. #INBOUND14 THANK YOU!

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