Press "Enter" to Search, or "Esc" to Cancel

How can brands get more bang for their buck in their programmatic campaigns, using B2B audience data

As more B2B brands and agencies turn to social media for dynamic programmatic campaigns, standing out in an overwhelmingly noisy digital landscape can be challenging. One way to increase the effectiveness of social media campaigns is to leverage audience data.

But more than just any audience data…

Audience data driven by intent-powered insights. 

Using demographic and firmographic data, B2B brands can create targeted campaigns that deliver more value and drive better results by accessing deep insights across a broad range of B2B areas in real time. In this article, we’ll explore the role of audience data in B2B social media campaigns and share tips on using Intent-powered data to drive more effective media buys and get more bang for your buck.

Understanding the importance of audience data in B2B social media campaigns

The role of audience data is critical to the success of any social media campaign. When you understand your audience’s intent, research journey, and critical needs, you can create relevant content and messaging that resonates with their interests to help them make the best purchase decision that points to your brand’s value. This approach is essential for B2B marketing, where the buyer journey can be complex, nuanced and decision-makers need to be convinced it’s the right choice for achieving their future campaign goals.

Agencies - Bombora

Source: Data values may have changed since this article was published.

The role of audience data in B2B marketing

For B2B companies, audience data helps identify target accounts and decision-makers within those accounts. By analyzing audience demographics, behavior, and interests, you can create buyer personas that inform your marketing messages and the campaign metrics that matter the most to your media buying team. Audience data also helps B2B companies identify where their target audience is spending time online, which allows them to invest in the social media platforms that will deliver the best results, especially for nuanced industries like manufacturing, banking, and healthcare.

Additionally, brands and agencies may opt to use a variety of distribution channels and networks to serve their ads at scale cost-efficiently, making integrations a key component in the effectiveness of the audience solutions used. Built for modern-media buyers today, Bombora’s GDPR-compliant data integrates into all major ad platforms to support paid media across digital, including programmatic display/video, social, advanced TV, and more.

Managing brand risk and mitigating campaign fraud

Complex audience journeys and fickle buyer behavior has made data an essential commodity for the success of programmatic campaigns to keep prospects engaged and delighted. However, it is crucial to recognize that not all data sources are created equal or adhere to stringent privacy regulations such as GDPR or CCPA.

Bidstream data, a widely-used third-party data source, is generated by an advertising network when a user visits a webpage with ads. This data encompasses information about the website, the displayed ad, and personally identifiable information collected from the user. The inherent risk lies in that bidstream data cannot ensure compliance with the growing array of user privacy laws and regulations. Users consenting to share their data with a specific website do not simultaneously consent to share their data with the highest bidder on an ad. This distinction is crucial for adhering to privacy regulations.

Moreover, bidstream vendors often share user data with businesses that did not win the ad bid, violating the guidelines set forth by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Any reliance on third-party bidstream data for your programmatic campaigns places your business at legal risk of infringing on user privacy laws. That’s why embracing alternative data sources that allow you to connect to the needs of your buyers faster and prioritize compliance with privacy regulations is vital to safeguarding the integrity of your campaigns and protecting the performance (and budget!) of your media buying plan.

Flowchart illustrating the process of bidstream data collection, from user interaction to data aggregation and analysis

Identifying and segmenting your B2B audience

Using buyer personas for targeted, cost-efficient programmatic marketing

The first step in leveraging intent-powered audience solutions is to create buyer personas. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer profile (ICP) based on actual data about customer demographics, behavior, and interests. By creating buyer personas, you can tailor your marketing messages to the specific needs and interests of your target accounts to maximize your spending on the audiences actively looking for your products and services.

When creating buyer personas, it’s essential to consider factors such as job responsibilities, pain points, and goals. For example, if you’re targeting IT professionals, you may want to create a persona for a network administrator responsible for maintaining the company’s infrastructure. This persona may have pain points, such as network downtime and security breaches, and goals, such as reducing costs and improving efficiency.

Understanding the specific needs and pain points drives your campaign to connect faster with qualified accounts and spend your CPC (cost-per-click) where there is the highest potential for conversion, and ultimately reduce marketing waste by allocating resources more strategically, ensuring that every dollar spent on your programmatic media buying delivers the best possible return on investment (ROI). As an example, check out the predictive signals you can tap into with Bombora’s audience data below.

Predictive signals from Bombora's audience data solutions

Predictive signals

Analyzing audience demographics and behavior

To create accurate buyer personas, you need the ability to dig deep into the types of tools they’re leveraging, the industries they operate in, and where they sit in their respective enterprise organizations. This data can come from various sources, including social media analytics, website analytics, and customer surveys.

When analyzing audience data, B2B companies should look at factors such as age, gender, job title, company size, and industry. They should also consider how their audience interacts with their websites and social media channels, such as what pages they visit, what content they engage with, and how often they convert into leads or customers.

For example, if you’re a software company targeting small businesses, you may find that your audience is primarily male, between the ages of 25-44, and located in urban areas. You may also find that your audience is interested in topics such as cloud computing and cybersecurity and frequently engages with content related to these topics on your website and social media channels.

Furthermore, Bombora’s audience solutions enable media buyers to efficiently build audiences to meet their needs for RFPs or pitches, either independently or with the support of our Audience Desk team. This allows programmatic teams to discover and tap into new addressable markets using Bombora’s comprehensive demographic, firmographic, and B2B Intent audience data.

Bombora's audience segments for their audience solutions suite

Leveraging audience data to optimize content performance

Tailoring content to audience preferences

Creating accurate buyer personas is the first step in optimizing your programmatic media strategy for efficient budget spend. Once you have a clear understanding of who your target audience is, you can use audience data to tailor your campaign’s marketing mix to their behavioral preferences.

For instance, if your target audience is interested in thought leadership content, you might create blog posts or whitepapers that showcase your company’s expertise in a particular area. Alternatively, if your audience is more visually oriented, you might focus on creating infographics or videos that can be shared on social media. This approach will not only increase engagement rates but also drive more leads and conversions.

Another way to tailor your content strategy to your audience’s preferences is by analyzing the types of content that generate the most engagement. For example, if your audience engages more with user-generated content (UGC), you might create more opportunities for your customers to share their experiences with your brand. This approach not only increases engagement but also builds trust and credibility with your audience.

Graphic showing how agencies can use Bombora's data to build client audiences

Utilizing first-party insights to measure campaign engagement

Creating content that resonates with your audience is critical to driving results. By analyzing which types of content perform best with your target audience, you can create more effective campaigns that drive results.

For instance, if your audience engages more with shorter videos on social media, you might create more of these types of videos to increase engagement rates. Similarly, if your audience is more likely to convert after reading a long-form blog post, you might invest in creating more detailed content on your website.

With Bombora’s Visitor Insights tag, you can prove the effectiveness of your programmatic efforts by measuring your target account reach and the B2B segments being led to your site. Bombora provides deep insights into the composition, engagement behavior, and buying journey of your audience so you can assess how much you’ve grown over your previous baseline.

How Bombora uses their Audience Solutions product to support Agencies in their ABM programs

Customizing ad targeting for exceptional results

One way to use audience data, especially in social media campaigns, is to dig deep into customizing your ad targeting strategies. By analyzing audience data to understand their interests, behaviors, and demographics, B2B companies can create highly targeted ads that rank high for context, relevance, and timeliness with your target account list.

For example, suppose your company is targeting decision-makers in the healthcare industry. In that case, you might create ads that speak to the pain points of healthcare professionals and highlight how your product or service can help them navigate the nuance of HIPAA regulatory compliance.

Customizing ad targeting can also help brands and agencies alike manage their marketing budgets more effectively by casting their net to the accounts they have valuable, intentional insights on, enabling them to proactively outreach with useful, educative buyer journeys versus a spray and pray narrative at scale.

Retargeting strategies for B2B brands

Retargeting is another effective strategy B2B companies can use to enhance social media ad targeting. By retargeting website visitors who have already shown an interest in your company, you can deliver ads that are more likely to convert them into leads or customers.

Retargeting campaigns can be highly cost-efficient when used with intent-powered audience data. For example, suppose your company sells software to businesses. You might create a retargeting campaign that targets visitors who have shown an interest in your software’s features related to project management. You can then use predictive signals around the existing tools in their technology stack to tailor ads that spotlight key integrations with software’s project management capabilities and the combinative value proposition that can be achieved if they choose your solution.

Your sustainable marketing spend becomes effective when you get to re-engage and upsell to an audience that is familiar with your brand’s awareness but with a new value proposition in mind.

The takeaway 

So, to put it simply, if B2B brands want to get the most out of their programmatic campaigns, they should focus on the impact of using intent-powered audience data solutions. This way, they can better understand their target audience, create more relevant content, and fine-tune their ad targeting to focus on accounts with the highest propensity to buy. By doing this, they’ll not only make their marketing budget go further but also stay on the right side of ever-changing privacy laws. And, of course, they’ll be in a better position to stand out from the competition and gain more measurable ROI from their programmatic campaign spend.

If you’re looking for a free sample of our audience data or strategic tips on how to curate campaign audiences with precision, reach out to our agency team today.

Ad creative promoting the Forrester Wave Report 2023 for B2B Intent data providers