Accelerating Personalization At Scale For B2B

A Conversation With Comcast

Mar 1, 2022 3:00 PM4:00 PM EST

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Key Discussion Takeaways

How do you provide your customer with a personalized experience based on their needs? People want to be online and connected — and brands are feeling the pull of the digital transformation age as consumers desire faster, more transparent, and higher quality products.

As a brand, uplifting and digitizing your marketing strategies to meet customer needs are crucial. So, what steps can you take to reach a more advanced digital operating system? How do you optimize content strategies to provide a new and advanced approach for the customer experience?

In this virtual event, Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson sits down with Sarah Ohle, VP of Strategy at Hero Digital, and Scott Biondi, Senior Director of Comcast Business Marketing at Comcast, to talk about understanding the analytics and optimization of digital strategies. Together, they discuss maintaining consumer expectations across your omnichannel presence, unique ways to ask for personalized data, and improving personalization to reduce your churn rate.


Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:


  • Sarah Ohle introduces Hero Digital and their role in shaping digital consulting services
  • The customer experience that drives opportunities — and understanding the value of data
  • How your digital presence affects your digital journey analytics
  • Ways to personalize content across digital channels
  • How the pandemic changed the customer’s digital experience
  • Can you influence customers to share information?
  • Scott Biondi talks about leveraging personalized content for marketing campaigns
  • An omnichannel approach to digital marketing
  • What’s the next big thing to improve personalization?
  • The power of tactics and strategies to reach a goal
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Event Partners

Hero Digital

Hero Digital is a leading independent customer experience company focusing on business, design, and technology.

Connect with Hero Digital


Adobe Experience Cloud is the most comprehensive suite of customer experience management tools on the market. With solutions for data, content delivery, commerce, personalization, and more, this marketing stack is created with the world’s first platform designed specifically to create engaging customer experiences. Each product has built-in artificial intelligence and works seamlessly with other Adobe products. And they integrate with your existing technology and future innovations, so you can consistently deliver the right experience every time.

Connect with Adobe

Guest Speakers

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Sarah Ohle

VP of Strategy at Hero Digital

Sarah Ohle is the Vice President of Strategy at Hero Digital, a digital consulting agency that offers digital marketing and strategies to consumers around the world. Sarah has worked in various executive-level positions for marketing companies. She was previously the Vice President of Marketing Insights at GroundTruth and the Director of Custom Research at The Nielsen Company. She is a graduate of the UCLA Anderson School of Management with a master's in marketing and Middlebury College with a bachelor's in psychology. 

Scott Biondi

Senior Director of Comcast Business Marketing at Comcast

Scott Biondi is the Senior Director of Comcast Business Marketing at Comcast, a broadband company for small and enterprise-level businesses. Scott has over 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, and accounting. He has worked for Rackspace Hosting as the Senior Marketing Manager and at AT&T as the Director of U-verse Voice Marketing. He earned his bachelor's of English and business from the University of Scranton and his master's of business administration from San Diego State University. 

Event Moderator

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson LinkedIn

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Sarah Ohle

VP of Strategy at Hero Digital

Sarah Ohle is the Vice President of Strategy at Hero Digital, a digital consulting agency that offers digital marketing and strategies to consumers around the world. Sarah has worked in various executive-level positions for marketing companies. She was previously the Vice President of Marketing Insights at GroundTruth and the Director of Custom Research at The Nielsen Company. She is a graduate of the UCLA Anderson School of Management with a master's in marketing and Middlebury College with a bachelor's in psychology. 

Scott Biondi

Senior Director of Comcast Business Marketing at Comcast

Scott Biondi is the Senior Director of Comcast Business Marketing at Comcast, a broadband company for small and enterprise-level businesses. Scott has over 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, and accounting. He has worked for Rackspace Hosting as the Senior Marketing Manager and at AT&T as the Director of U-verse Voice Marketing. He earned his bachelor's of English and business from the University of Scranton and his master's of business administration from San Diego State University. 

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Need help with something else?

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson

Senior Digital Strategist at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution.

Senior Digital Strategist Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson runs the group & connects with dozens of brand executives every week, always for free.

Schedule a free consultation call

Discussion Transcription

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  0:18

Hello, happy Tuesday everyone I am Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson, a digital strategist here at BWG Connect. And we are a network and knowledge sharing group. It is what we do, we stay on top of latest trends, challenges, whatever it is that is changing the digital landscape that we all know and love. We're on track to do at least 500 of these virtual events this year due to the increase of demand to better understand everything digital, and we will be doing 100 In person, small format dinners. So if you happen to be in a tier one city, definitely shoot us an email, we'd love to have you these dinners are typically 15 to 20 people having a specific discussion around a digital topic. It's from those conversations that that's where we generate ideas for future webinars and dinners. And it's also where we meet our resident experts, such as Adobe, Hero Digital and special guest, Comcast, who's here today, anybody that we asked to come on to these webinars in teach the collective team has come highly recommended from a variety of brands that we work with. So if you're ever in need of any recommendations, you're looking for a service provider of any sort, please feel free to reach out to me at Tiffany And I have a short list of the best of the best. We also know that a lot of people are hiring right now. So do note that we have a talent agency BWG talent that we'd be happy to put you in contact with. So a few housekeeping items, we started about three to four minutes after the hour. So rest assured that we will end three to four minutes at least before the end of the hour. And we want this to be as conversational as possible. So definitely fill into the chat bar Any questions, comments you may have, you can feel free to email me And we'll be sure to get those answered for you. So with that, let's roll and learn about accelerating personalization. At scale for b2b. We have our friends here from Hero Digital Adobe, great partners and supporters of the network boys special guests Comcast. So welcome Sarah. And Scott, if you'd give a brief introduction on yourself, that'd be great. And we will jump into the information.

Scott Biondi  2:42

Sounds good, Sarah, take it away.

Sarah Ohle  2:46

Hey, I'm Sarah Ohle. I'm VP of strategy and Hero Digital. I am here just chatting if anybody caught the small talk before I'm based out of Minnesota. But I work with clients across the country, working to understand their customers and their businesses and helping them apply strategies like personalization to make their digital marketing efforts as impactful as possible.

Scott Biondi  3:07

Scott? Great, thanks, Sarah. Scott Biondi, I work for Comcast business. I spent most of my career in b2b or b2c for some of the largest companies, telco companies, cable companies, hosting companies, then a passion project of mine to work on this multi year project, which really for me is marketing technology, both for sales and marketing, and looking at the strategy and the technology solutions that we should have to better enable our our end users that are out there today. And it's a very fun and exciting space. Awesome,

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  3:44

thank you both for joining. And, sir, if you want to start to dive into the information, I know there's a lot of good stuff to go over. Rookie mistake not going

Sarah Ohle  3:55

off mute. So before we get into that, I just did want to give a quick overview of Hero Digital for those of you who aren't familiar. Hero Digital, we're a leading independent digital customer experience company. We operate on what we call the intersection of business design and technology. So most importantly, we lead with a customer first approach rather than technology or process. We believe that the best outcomes come from wrapping initiatives around the needs of the customer. So by starting with the fundamental truths of the customer experience, we're able to design beautiful experiences that speak directly to the needs, and deliver value and impact to your business. As a company, we organized ourselves to help brands create what we call these moments of truth and beauty that unlock new new business growth by helping CMOS do three big things. Invent, transform, and perform. So when we say invent, we're talking about digital invention. This is turning digital business opportunities into new CX ideas. Experience transformation is then manifesting customer experiences through design and technology essentially bringing things to life. And then we have the marketing performance piece perform, which is accelerating growth results through a connected experience ecosystem. And then just the final comment on this for the audience here is we are also proud to have been partnered with Adobe since our founding. We work across the entire experience cloud, because Adobe solutions allow us to deliver on the vision we have for our clients and their customers. And additionally, we have are thrilled that we've been named Adobe's emerging solution Partner of the Year for the Americas in 2022. So this award recognizes the value and experience that hopefully we bring to our joint client clients with Adobe.

So with that, let's get into why you're all here today. And that's the topic of personalization. Specifically in b2b. Measurement of personalization, it can be easy to start but difficult to master. And despite this, many organizations struggle with taking that first step. So from Hero Digital's perspective, we recommend focusing on four key pillars to ensure that you have a strong foundation in your personalization program. We're going to go through each of these in detail. Scott's going to talk a little bit about his perspective. From Comcast, as we go through each of these, the four pillars start with a customer understanding, it's the most obvious. So in order to have an experience that's personalized, you first need to understand who you're personalizing for. The second piece is this idea of moments based experiences. So this takes that understanding a layer deeper to not only understand the customer, but also their full experience. So it focuses on a deep understanding of key decision points along the customer journey and where you can be most impactful. The third, very, very important pillar is privacy and trust. So this is at the core of everything we do everything we design with our clients. And it's an area that's just becoming more and more relevant, and especially critical for all companies. And then finally, industry specific needs and context. So while many approaches and techniques are going to remain the same across different industries, there are different specific considerations when you're personalizing and retail versus healthcare versus b2b. So keeping in mind how your audience interacts with you and your peers in the industry are key. So with that, I'm getting right into the the first pillar customer understanding. So like I said, a personalized experience is always going to begin with a deep understanding of who you're going to be personalizing this experience for.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  7:51

And in order to personalize an experience

Sarah Ohle  7:52

this speaks to your specific customer needs, you first need to uncover what I keep referring to as these layers of human truths behind the customers. So what motivates them, what brings them joy, what frustrates them, this, we can get this through interviews, surveys, social listening, really anything that gets at the core of where these people are coming from. And then from there, viewing the customer experience in the context of cultural and market conditions provides an additional insight into drivers and opportunities. So this can be trend analysis, competitive audits, expert interviews, whatever it takes to get that full

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  8:26


Sarah Ohle  8:28

And then there's another step tying insights together into a powerful story, to build up the true insights, not only shedding light into your customers, but also on where there's potential business value. And then the final piece is tying this all together through a deep knowledge of all phases of design and deployment, to strategically apply these insights and evolve and iterate on what we keep finding. So all of this is just to say, really deeply understanding your customer, is going to be what resulted in an experience that's truly founded in human needs and behaviors. Understanding your customers is the foundation. But I want to talk a little bit about how we continue to evolve and activate on understanding. So as brands are more and more dependent on first party data, the challenge of managing activating that data is is getting harder. So simply capturing traffic and data sources is not going to get you a complete view of your customer. Walking through each of these pieces. The first one I want to call out is the idea of customer data management. So the more you can align your marketing focus customer data with enterprise data management practices, the more you're going to be able to unlock insights and activate on customer touchpoints. So customer data platforms or CDP, is that becoming more and more integral in solving this challenge. The second piece, Journey analytics, so focusing on journeys more than just To point in time personalization, so product recommendations are a good start. But as journey journeys become more complicated, a deeper understanding is going to allow you to find new ways to unlock value. So an analogy that most people can relate to is the process of getting a refinancing a mortgage. So simply personalizing the right mortgage project product is going to be a great starting point. But anyone who's been through the process knows that's only the start, you have a whole journey that's going to require me to engage with the bank, other third parties, my realtor, the sellers, realtor, estimators, and more. So understanding how to optimize that journey. And reduce friction will require measurement personalization beyond that recommendation of a particular type of mortgage mortgage. So we're gonna talk about more on that whole journey idea in a minute when we go into the moments based approach. But I do just continuing on here, talk about digital intelligence. So digital intelligence tools, go beyond customer interactions with digital touch points to align data streams from other sources, the more data points a brand can connect together, the more effective personalization, they're going to be able to provide. So some examples of the sources that you might have your own walled gardens. So support or engagement, communities, sensors, bots, IoT devices, digital assistants, cloud data, services, new services, all of those are really robust sources of digital intelligence that you can use to supplement that customer profile I was talking about on the slide before. And then the final piece is artificial intelligence. So we have many conversations with companies who want to start with AI. Data is the fuel that's going to power AI and machine learning. So focusing on getting the first three ingredients in place, will position you to truly activate on AI. When you have the customer data management, the journey analytics, the digital intelligence, those elements, as the foundation, you're going to be well positioned to start activating on AI machine learning to unlock new insights, and automate select tasks. So once you have all four in place, AI really can accelerate or eliminate a lot of this manual tasks, increasing efficiency and providing new deeper insights into you and your team. I'm gonna pause right there and hand it over to you, Scott, if you have any sort of insights from from your perspective on this idea of understanding your customer.

Scott Biondi  12:29

Yeah, thanks, sir. So we were looking at some of this information, customer data management, Journey analytics, digital intelligence, artificial intelligence, it's all good. It's a, it's, it's what we should be striving for. I think one of the conversations we had earlier, Sarah was that, you know, a lot of companies are still at different levels in their maturity model. So for whoever's on this call, this may seem daunting when I get there. But how to get there. So my advice is look at each of these pieces that are important, but also realize where you're at, at a maturity level. So we look at, you know, three year roadmaps. What do we want to accomplish in the next three months? The next six months, nine months, 12 months? How are we looking and building this in the right platform with the right partners. So we use hero and Adobe today to build a lot of our personalized journeys, also in b2b, and a lot of the focus that we have on customer data management, a company like ours, we've got residential customers, we've got business customers, there's a lot when we say who's a customer, and sometimes your brand, whether it's residential or commercial, is very, very important. And it's very important to look at the customer data from the perspective of personas and driving towards those personas. Now, those personas can be Scott Biondi, as a Senior Director of Marketing, that's a title. It could be the buyers group, if you're targeting me and b2b. Then there's other folks that I need to sell into finance and procurement. So there's buyers groups, there's personas and titles. There's also personas as an individual consumer. I'm a residential, father of two, who likes certain products. So there's a story there. So that story bleeds into the journey analytics and the content that you want to send, what do you want to send to me at different phases, awareness, interest and consideration? And then there's my digital presence? Where am I looking? There's a lot of information that can be held in Adobe analytics can be held in your domain if your company surging on different types of activity or data. But that fourth point on artificial intelligence is really a lot more runway ahead of us. I think that's the hard part is what are we doing to do self learning to make sure that we're actioning on journey analytics in a way that's automated and scalable? And I think most companies are making progress. I'd like to say that crawl, walk Run, you know, we're definitely walking, we're not crawling anymore. And we made some good personalized journeys that are out there. But the landscape is changing. It's it's it's important to have a Northstar a three year roadmap, and really figure out where are you in your budget and your timing and when you want to deliver it to the business. So I think those are some key considerations on this slide. That's really,

Sarah Ohle  15:26

really great to hear from from your perspective, having gone through a lot of this on the client side, definitely. The the next pillar digging into so touched on this a little bit with with journey, Journey analytics, but the idea of moments based experiences. So this is focusing on what are the key decision points in in the customer journey, the broader context of a customer journey is going to help add to the effectiveness of personalization. So on the right of the slide, you can see a pretty extensive example of a customer journey from awareness to retention, all the touch points. So back to the getting a mortgage example, you know, you're not just stopping even at conversion, there's the idea of retention, how do you how do you keep a relationship with these people. So all of the touch points, potential content, technology usage, and data collection along the way, are all going to matter as part of this journey. And so the idea is to identify where on this journey we can use signals to personalize and where the personalization is going to be the most impactful. So the most effective personalization is going to be deliver delivering people what they need at the time that they need it most. So a couple of tools and thoughts as you're going through this and thinking about how to personalize along the journey. The first is this idea of content management. So modern content management, like Adobe Experience Manager is going to allow you to manage personalized content across all the channels, not just the web. So headless capabilities, power delivery of content channels, this includes digital assessment assistants, bots, voice devices. And then digital asset management, this is incredibly important to find a dynamic tagging that's aligned to user personas is going to allow for personalization across sentiment, compensation, composition, performance, emotion, really just allow you to create the type of personalization that's going to resonate with your customers.

And then the idea of marketing automation. So personalization, across email, this is standard practice. This is everybody's gotten the emails, the you know, hello, and then insert your name here. I mean, I think email personalization with some of the first kinds of personalization that was going on. Expanding that personalization, though, to mobile apps, order, status voice, these are all new opportunities to support the customer journey all along, not just the the one point in contact. It's got any any thoughts from your perspective here?

Scott Biondi  18:01

Yeah, thanks, Sarah. I, you know, I think the other important thing to remember too, when we think about making memories is especially in the b2b space, you look at SMB, mid market enterprise, they're gonna have very different journeys, very different paths to close, when it comes to sales, your SMB folks are going to be more transactional, more digital, can close quickly. And they're going to make a decision fast. So when you start to think about content management, digital asset management, you're gonna have different tools that are going to trigger the right type of behavior for the right type of company, the right type of person, your mid market, your enterprise, they've got longer sales cycle. So decision time takes longer, it's more thought leadership strategy. There, you might get into certain kinds of types of content management, that that's more about total cost of ownership or special white papers wherever you have other people in the industry. So delivering out that content is key, I think a digital asset management platform is also very important to make sure you've got the right metadata, or else you're going to be in this path where you're constantly recreating the same types are asking your agencies to create data and you're not leveraging dynamic content, and you're not leveraging what you've already learned. So I think digital asset management is very important. And I think that, you know, the challenge, a lot of this is creating that content. When we look at customer data, there's an infinite amount of different campaigns and slices that we can come up with but but it's when you have to get legal to prove it has to be brand focused and sales has to know what the campaigns are. All of that tends to lend itself to having a robust management system and of course, a good data that's available for you. And the importance of monitoring that digital asset management. What are people using? What are they not? which pieces are resonating, who's got the most downloads that are there, makes it more efficient so you know which direction to head in. So I think there's some great products and services that are out there today that we use. And I think that's all important leading that into automation as well.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  20:08

As awesome, as want to remind people to keep putting questions in the chat or emailing me, there is a question about b2b versus retail. And are there trends in other industries and retail that do or don't work? In a b2b scenario? Good, Sarah. I

Sarah Ohle  20:32

was gonna say yes. The easy answer. I think b2c and b2b are inherently very different. You Scott just mentioned, the different buying cycles, for example, the length of it is much longer, but also, there's some stuff we're going to touch on in a minute in terms of privacy and trust, where you're doing identity resolution, so actually trying to figure out who the person is that you are, that you're speaking to directly in a retail scenario. So that type of, of technology is not going to translate as well to b2b, I think there's a broader context that you need to understand beyond just the sort of exact persona that somebody is your audience or segment that somebody is there's a whole context of who they are operating within a business for b2b as well.

Scott Biondi  21:20

You know, the other thing I'd say, too, we've got a lot of XFINITY retail stores. So we're in retail, but you can also go there, go in there and find out about Comcast Business mobile. So if you are in a position like we are, where you've got retail for consumers and retail for business, you know, be where the customer is, if that person's a small business owner, and they're looking for a mobile solution, and you don't have that integrated into your retail strategy. Now, that's something you got to put on your roadmap. Good question, I

Sarah Ohle  21:48

think, yes, very quickly. I think like one other thing, when I think about b2b, I feel like sometimes especially like early days of personalization, you start thinking about people only in terms of who they are in their business. But all of the people who are buying a b2b capacity are also consumers as well. So if the answer is yes, there's some trends that don't directly correlate. But I do think it's important to keep that understanding that, you know, as Scott was saying, when he introduced himself, he's not just somebody who works at Comcast, he has a personal life as well. And all of those things are going to influence who he is as a buyer. So it's, I think it's almost like an additional layer of context you have to consider from the b2b perspective.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  22:31

Yeah, my background was in b2b. And we always thought of the b2b way of buying was this logical thinking, and there was no emotion attached. And I think now there's this especially post COVID, there is emotion attached to a b2b experience. That's, it's just not a b2c thing anymore. And a lot of times a b2b buyer is shopping. Like they are a b2c. Because they are essentially they're, they're human, and they're doing both.

Scott Biondi  23:00

Yeah, Tiffany, I was talking to a customer yesterday, they gave service at home, and when we're talking, so the reason they decided to get Comcast for the small business, internet was because they had a good experience at home. Conversely, when it's a bad experience, we hear that too. And that can affect buying decisions in the b2b world too. So yeah, not having any surprises and understanding the journey is going to lead you down different personalized paths and recommendations to and that's also part of the customer data management that we're building and working towards to. Awesome. So moving on,

Sarah Ohle  23:35

the next pillar is really, really important one, increasingly, so it's privacy and trust is really front and center for every company across every vertical. Personally, I like to say there's a fine line between personalized and creepy. And I think that fine line has to be defined by this idea of privacy and trust. So with GDPR CCPA, other state regulations, browsers, eliminating default support for third party cookies, every brand is now a data company and you can't play fast and loose with customer data. Or else you're going to find yourself in a position where you don't have that trust of your customers anymore. So pause for a minute and think about what that means. So you have to truly live in your customers shoes. So the counterpoint to everything I just said is well, do people really care about privacy? I mean, I've done a lot of research with the different generations Gen Z tends to be a little bit more like oh, no, you know, I can't I don't really own the my data. I can give it to anybody, you know, a little bit less protective. Yeah, they use social media. We add digital systems to our homes. Everyone's convinced Alexa spying spying on them. So a lot of brands start to assume that people don't really care that much about privacy. What I'm going to share it's a screenshot from the president of an advertising agency just a few weeks ago. The individual's pushing back on Apple's continued privacy policy. and how it impacts their business, not the consumer. So they asked this question, does anyone actually feel protected by by this change?

So I want to I want to pose pose that put that out there. That question. So let's dig into it, Forrester conducted a study that looked at what percentage of US adults use at least one privacy tool and online. So this could be an ad blocker VPN, anything similar that will help protect their privacy. So when I would give this presentation person, I would like to pull the room and ask people to guess the number. And the results are usually all over the place. So guesses anywhere from 5% to 65%? The actual answer is 77. And this research was done before Apple released their security updates. But this means that 77% of US adults actually installed or configure these settings. So changes from organizations like apps, Apple and Mozilla, there's simply defaulting to the settings that users would choose for themselves, if asked. So what this boils down to is that at the end of the day, when it comes to sharing personal data, data that we would want to use to personalize the customers and control. And when we asked what would motivate you to share more personal information, a lot of people said nothing. Nothing would motivate me to share more personal information. But if you look a little deeper, a couple levels down. You see the things like cash, rewards, loyalty programs, options to opt out. These are all going to stand out as factors influencing customers willingness to share information about themselves. So it's not necessarily that people aren't willing to give up their personal information, but it has to be worth it to them, they have to be getting something valuable in return. Because it is important people care about who they are, they care about their privacy. And then they're not just going to give it out so that you're able to serve them better content, explicitly to benefit your business, it has to benefit them as well. So the good news is, there are also a lot of areas that you can focus on as a brand to embrace privacy as standard for customers. So the first thing enterprise preference management. So creating a enterprise preference management allows you, your customers to buy, define and manage their preferences for how you can use their data to personalize their experiences. If you're being transparent in how you're going to utilize customer data and giving them a say in how their profiles are managed, they're going to be more willing to share that information with you. The second piece is this idea of identity resolution. So modern approaches can be used to identify a person or persona, without dependency on third party cookies. Knowing your customer early in the journey is going to allow you to accelerate the optimization of their journey and your ROI from your perspective as well. The third piece when it comes to privacy, regulatory compliance, I mentioned GDPR CCPA other emerging laws that are going to put control the data back into the hands of the customers. So this isn't that this isn't necessarily something for a brand to do. But something for a brand to be very aware of and invest in tools to help manage this compliance and ensure that they can adapt the low adapt as the legal definition of PII is expanding. And then the last one, which is kind of the no brainer that it took a took a while to get to is this idea of zero party data. So zero party data is the Just ASK approach to personalization. So it's becoming more common for brands to ask the customer about themselves or their girl goals in order to align the underlying journey to these answers. So just saying, you know, how would you like this data personalized and getting? Getting them to provide you with that information so that you can create a personalized experience based on that?

Scott Biondi  29:04

Yeah, sir, I was just gonna say this is a great, great topic. And we get a lot of folks on here who are in marketing. And if you're like me, and at a dinner event with some friends or Thanksgiving, you tell somebody you're in marketing, this topic always comes up. Maybe it's just me. What's your stance on it? And I said, I think it's a great, it's great for the consumers, and it's great for businesses. Yeah. How successful were we in someone who doesn't want any of their information given to consistently give them on relevant information? It's not a great solution. So I think privacy and trust just makes makes lazy marketers go away. Like to say so I joined a left a gym at one point in time and I realized that every Tuesday they sent me the same offer for three years to come back. Not a change in the message, not a change in the message to my wife, my two kids the exact same Email, the company that one my business knew me knew what I was searching for and knew what I was looking at gave me recipes gave me different types of workouts. And that's, you know, someone who's not a lazy marketer hitting the send button. And so when we think about b2b As an example, I think, you know, zero trust data to your point, Sarah's spot on where that is, we've got to make sure that we get engaging content, and what how are we getting that information? We get so many tools in our toolbox as marketers, whether it's a webinar, whether it's events, trade shows, whether it's email, whether it's every touch that can be out there today that's in there, we got to be thinking about, what am I doing to make sure that I've engaged that customer with zero party data? I'd also like to say between zero party, first party and third party, what are we doing to give that to sales. And that's just a, like I said, we have a lot of folks in marketing, but we're doing a lot of work to start sharing our information so that the person is making that content that's out there, and the sales team is aware. Otherwise, it's just it's it's engagement data points in a marketing database. So what's relevant, what's important, we're definitely making some huge strides there. And I think that's also very important. They're dependent on zero party data. I think that's a big opportunity in future for b2b. It's a good new term.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  31:21

And that's a big topic. I mean, there's so much around this topic, it could easily be its own webinar, I did download the state of the cookieless, report, and So definitely recommend anybody who's on the call to download that because it has great information about privacy laws and the changes in compliance. But I think my favorite quote about it was every brand now is a data company. It's all about the data. It's all about the details. And it doesn't matter what kind of company you are, you have to but think about all the data that is around your business.

Scott Biondi  31:59

And I also say we had a few sessions with Euro on, you know, the changes that are coming, what's happening, strategizing around personalized messages, and what are we going to do about that. And so if your partner that you're currently working with isn't bringing this to you, and looking and actually intelligent about it, you need to rethink that relationship.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  32:23

Awesome. We do have a question in the audience about past or current projects that you may be working on that's leveraging personalized content if you'd be willing to share.

Scott Biondi  32:35

Yeah, for sure. We just did a gosh, it was a 42 touchpoint onboarding campaign for new customers, leveraging some new intelligence on product recommendations, using models for top deciles, but also using intent data from the domains from companies. So we've got one of the most simple, one of the most best product recommendation tools that we've ever tried to launch, we're gonna see, through testing to see how that works. We've done a few examples, also personalized videos, matching account sales reps, to the message to the targeted leader that's out there today, using a content hub specific to that conversation of the day, whether it's digital transformation, secure networking solutions, but really trying to make sure, like I said, a sales persons job is very difficult every day who I target, what do I say? Where do I send them. And so helping that to remove that friction, where it says, this is Scott, he's your Comcast, business account executive. Here's what we have on secure networking solutions. I know your company is interested in that. These are the types of new things that we're breaking ground on every day, and we're doing a lot more of and plan to do a lot more in the future. So I hope that was specific. Thank you. So

Sarah Ohle  33:58

moving on to the final pillar, and then we'll get into a little bit more b2b specifics. The final pillar to consider in your approach, personalization is industry specific needs. So this obviously means understanding your own industry. And again, we'll get into that more a little bit in a minute. But you also do need to understand the trends that are happening in other industries. Because at the end of the day, your customer, as we were saying before, is not only a b2b buyer, they're also a customer of retail brands, financial institutions, any other sort of app they have on their phone, and those are all going to affect the way they consider and expect content to be delivered to them. So when you're thinking about industry specific needs, you need to not only look at your customer, what matters most to them, but you also need to consider how they behave in the context of your category. We've talked about that quite a bit. This was the moment based marketing stuff we were digging into earlier. On So the experiences they may have with your competition I mean, obviously that's the the very direct they're getting your everyday you're trying to sell them against your direct competition. So what are they getting from that perspective, but also the broader trends and out of industry interactions that they're having are still setting their expectations. So I always call it the Amazon effect, which is the I want it now i want it personalized. I want it tailored to exactly what what I need in the moment, immediately. So the idea that they are having these interactions, so some examples specific to personalization, from the retail perspective, continually elevated expectations and competition for attention, personalization spanning both in store and online. So the omni channel approach to personalization. Scott, you probably can talk about that from the retail perspective. Healthcare, we have individual care options with guidance through the patient journey. So really personalizing to the specific journey that a patient's through. From the fencer perspective, you have personalized experiencing helping customers feel empowered, and educated with their financial decisions. So that is a lot to consume. There's a lot out there that is hitting your customers every day. And again, they're not just b2b buyers, they're people to humans at the core of everything. So make sure you're not just looking through the specific lens of your customer, your business, but taking in everything that surrounds that as well. So, we're gonna finally dig into a little bit more around what personalization looks like in b2b specifically, and Scott's gonna talk a bit more as well about what this has been like for Comcast. So one of the things that's unique about b2b is this idea of a team buying model, it's going to complicate the personalized, personalizing a buying journey. So b2b buyers interact with sellers, and they're going to determine what's meaningful or relevant through the lens of what they already know, the role they play in their decision process, insights from peers, and generally the collective experiences that precede the consumption of the content. b2b brands are using a number of techniques. So you can see that personalizing to a persona, or person are only the fourth or fifth on the list, there's a lot of large opportunity to grow this number, the higher items such as targeting industry are fine, but they're really table stakes. So getting to know what the role or individual needs, that's where the magics really going to happen. So in terms of pulling this together from the the b2b lens, focusing on on three areas is going to help really focus your b2b personalization efforts. So the first personalization starting by segmenting your audiences, you don't have to run immediately to individual personalization. So getting the right content to the right role that's going to provide huge benefits. aligning these segments with your content strategy, and tagging is going to accelerate these this effort. The next piece is customization following that, so customize your experiences to the audience. If you have CRM integration, and account identification, you can link all of client activities back to the company profile, you can then introduce techniques that may include surfacing other content that your team members have been downloading. So you have that sort of broader perspective there. And then finally, contextualization, so meeting the customer where they are in the journey, these insights, using insights from analytics and identifying spots in the journey that caused friction, use personalization to get the person to their next step. So not all of this is unique. A lot of it's stuff that we we've touched on previously, but just in general, remembering that this this is a journey. So each test, an insights gain, your ability to optimize is going to mature and provide more and new approaches to make the customer experience even better. Scott, I'd love to hear hear a little bit more, just from your perspective. Overall. I know some of it we've discussed as we went through through the presentation, but just what personalization has sort of meant for Comcast, where you've been where you're going, all that good stuff.

Scott Biondi  39:21

Appreciate the opportunity. So what I'd say when it talks to personalization and customization, the advice also I give to the folks on this call is a marketing you stand at the intersection of sales, product development, customer experiences, and almost anything that you look at that don't have some story where you we did personalization and customization on something that we never even thought was gonna be a marketing program or campaign. But you got to listen, and you got to make sure you're listening to customers. So if you get opportunities to talk to people where they're at, whether it's in a retail store to trade show, virtual events, talk product teams talk to your sales partners. You don't have to always know all the answers. You know, a good example on personalization and customization is we've got a lot of folks, residential customers who love our XFINITY VOICE remote. And you know, that's a great product, there's a lot of things that you need to search for on TV and you want to find it fast. Well kind of found out that from a bar and restaurant situation, when someone's working in a restaurant, it's a lot of traffic, a lot of people like asking for service right away, a voice remote to saying where's, you know, when's the game on? And immediately they can find it. So you gotta listen for clues. And that can be a very personalized campaign that goes out to a certain vertical? Why are they buying your product? Right? Why are they looking for it? And who and why and map these out? So whoever's making that buying decision, if it's a business owner, a CTO, someone in cybersecurity, do you have your plans mapped out? Have you talked to your partners, and sometimes in marketing, we think we know, I can do all the research, I can figure it out, and but talk to folks and have that interaction. You know, when it comes to personalization customization, I'd also say, pick your bets and study your best bets. So when it comes to what you're going to go do, what are the KPIs that need to go accomplish? Try build and learn? I think many times people think it's a platform, and it's automated, and it's scalable, and you're going to hit a button and everything's gonna work. No, at the end of the day, decisions have to be made, which campaigns are important for your brand? which campaigns are important for sales? How are you going to schedule that throughout the calendar? And how do you have meaningful contact with people based off of the content that's out there. So when it comes to a lot of these pieces, always just listen, test and learn. I had this conversation one time with someone, you know, ROI is important to look at. But as you move up from SMB to mid market to enterprise, you can't look at a banner ad to an enterprise customer and look at a conversion rate. You know, you have to look at the entire attribution model, and figure which of the 1200 or so enterprise customers that I'm looking at, where are they? Because I can guarantee if you look, if your siloed company where direct mail or email or some tactic is being handled in different groups, with Omni channels, you know, forcing people to have experiences across the board and starting to figure out what's the optimal number of touch points to the ideal customer profile that I want to go target. And if you look at the mid market space, you can have 100,000 companies, how do you figure out who's the next one that deserves personalization customization, some more effort. And I think having the right data management tool and system looking at engagement scores, utilizing lead scoring also starts to figure out well, who's going to get different types of touches, who's invited to the next events or trade shows. So that's the piece I love about b2b is, you've got really three very unique audiences with unique needs and unique sales cycles. And you have to look at all of that together. So it's, it's a huge challenge. It's exciting every day, we've never been in this spot where we have so much information, so much campaign orchestration tools, and so much reporting. But where do you start? And how do you not get overwhelmed? So I think that's the most important thing when it comes to b2b marketing today. And I'll even say like Adobe couple years ago, or Adobe Marketo, visible, there were three different companies. Now they're one. So the whole marketing technology landscape is changing, too. So what's the right answer for us important to think, three to five years ahead to and pick and choose and learn and test is my my best advice. Hope that helps. That's

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  43:53

awesome. And going back to the testing, there's a question about examples of AI. So are there any examples of AI that have helped improve personalization for business that

Scott Biondi  44:04

you've seen? Yeah, actually, I kind of thought AI would be a question. This one's hard. I've got some great folks who are data scientists that work with us. And so I actually call them earlier, like, I think AI is gonna come up on this call. And of course, they get into neural networks, right? A lot of what people say is AI is really machine learning are an algorithm. And, you know, like lead scoring, even if you use, you know, Marketo or another tool Eloqua, whichever tool you decide to use, and you're picking lead scoring. Is it really self learning? Is it really creating artificial intelligence? I think we're at the forefront of that. As far as specific examples. I have a lot of things I want to go do. If I were to say, I really want to know which of my closed one sales in the last three years Here's what's the major amount of data that I can get whether it's interest data technology data, zero party data, first party data, that then tells me what's that Canvas or workflow that I need to go build? I don't think we're there yet. But I'm sure there's a lot of people working on that. So I am a little bit of a purist when it comes to AI. I think a lot of it is machine learning and algorithms and models now, I think, you know, plug out to anybody out there, but I think that's a lot of headway for us. Bro, Walk Run, the day, we're all like using AI across this whole thing might be a few years for us.

Sarah Ohle  45:40

I think that's the, if you think about digital maturity, that's a aspiration is the AI and I agree, I use the terms interchangeably before AI and machine learning. But I think most of what we're talking about here is machine learning, not necessarily the the Sci Fi idea of a sprint, after the walk, run.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  46:02

Fly, and yes.

Scott Biondi  46:06

I am interested in where AI takes lead scoring. Where, you know, I think there's opportunities there were to self learning lead scoring, and what's the most intelligent way? Or who's the best customer? I think that's, you know, some capabilities that will come in when I say Come Come fast. You know, it's just not there yet.

Sarah Ohle  46:27

Yeah, I think one thing you mentioned earlier, Scott is the idea of having a Northstar a three to five year plan. And I think that is so important, that sort of aspiration of where you want to go. And I think it is equally as important to revisit that every year, and see what's changed because especially technology is just just rapidly evolving. And, you know, we can guess we have a lot of really intelligent signals going into what we can guess is what the future is going to look like five years from now. But revisiting that Northstar and and adjusting based on the current market is, is just gonna keep you thinking about the future and evolving your business along with the environment around you.

Scott Biondi  47:07

Yeah, and Sarah, just to add to that, we have a prioritization exercise, we use something called Fibonacci sequencing, which you invite different people from the organization, whether it's sales, marketing, and you have to explain your roadmap, and then people vote on it. It's it's kind of fun, it's like poker, and then they flip cards. And but we do that we do that, I think once once a year, where we go through that prioritization exercise that they're trying to make me do it twice a year. But that's also important, right? So when you think of that roadmap, you know, what would your product partners say? What would your sales partners say? What would the division say? We've got headquarters, we got divisions regions, do they agree that you know what you're trying to do is the right thing. And that's worked very well for us past couple years. That's awesome.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  47:55

And talking about the roadmap, what are the most common mistakes when a b2b businesses looking into going this route and doing personalization? Is there anything they should be aware of? Off the bat?

Scott Biondi  48:08

I'd say mistakes. Don't focus on tools. You know, oh, my gosh, sometimes. I mean, if you look at it, it was it. Scott Brinker is martech landscape. I don't know what they're up to 10,000 different tools that are out there. And I think a lot of people think that a tool if I just get this tool, it's gonna make campaign orchestration, easier, ABM easy. Remember that your business is your own. And what you sell, how you sell what your customer lifetime value is, what your bundling strategy is, no tool is going to tell you that. And so while it seems daunting, you know, customers are there and you want to bundle them up, sell them, increase their customer satisfaction, reduce churn, like those are the content that'll be constant no matter what. If you look at acquisition, there's demand gen. How do you fill that demand gen pipeline? How's the follow up gonna happen? What are you doing to increase awareness, interest or brand that's out there today? So when you're thinking about personalization, and then you're saying these tools, you're going to buy a tool and find out that that didn't answer all those questions. Like what did we agree on? On lead follow up? Or how do we agree on which tactics to use? So don't let the tool when I say it's a mistake I've seen a bunch of times, that's still hard work, and it's specific to your industry and company. So don't put all your eggs in a tool? Is my advice.

Sarah Ohle  49:46

Yeah, I would add on to that, Scott is the difference between tactics and strategies as well. I would put tactics and tools kind of in the same bucket of means to an end, rather than actually saying, oh, we need to do personalization. So We should be doing X, this one, one little thing. Think about what you're trying to achieve, and then the tools and tactics you need to get there. And the other thing to add on to that is, you don't need to jump to the fourth level of digital maturity either like you can dip your toes in personalization, and you know, take it take a little step and then add on to it, and then add on to it while working on that, that broader vision. So not trying to just bite off everything, everything all at once, you know, sort of catch up, do the market level, catch up with the competitors, catch up with the industry, and then think about what's next and where you can go. But get the basics right first.

Scott Biondi  50:40

Yeah, and Sarah, I think marrying online and offline is, is an area right, like there's so much you can do an online. But there's also a lot of firmographic demographic zero party data that we now can blend in, through Adobe analytics are three different tools are out there today. There's different tools where we can route people to different sites, depending on what vertical they're in. And there's a lot more that's happened the past couple years on marrying online and offline. And I think that's important as well.

Sarah Ohle  51:12

Yeah, I almost laugh now at when people talk about digital marketing. I'm like, There's no such thing as digital marketing anymore. It's just marketing. That's what marketing is. Of Absolutely.

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  51:21

And they're more departments in the room now, instead of marketing. And now with personalization, you know, who are the stakeholders and the teams, the Simian are stretching from a lot of different angles now, as you pick apart and put your clues together who that customer is. Yeah, yeah.

Scott Biondi  51:41

Yeah, totally. The other. Other one thing I'd say, too, if you're in an organization to where you a lot of people buying different things, and I got someone bought this, about that in a division or a region, it probably means that your company doesn't have an answer, and people are just grabbing it, whatever they can grab. So look at your Mar tech stack. And if you find, you've got, you know, six different ABM tools that are out there, that it's probably time to consolidate that and figure out what your star is and your three year roadmap. And don't be surprised when you inspect especially in a large organization, but be there to help and not be a burden or hindrance. So I think a lot of people can just go buy something in a POC or trial, something over here, but the mixture, you're at least coming together on who bought what and what's working. Absolutely. Great advice. That was

Sarah Ohle  52:38

last slide. I have just as q&a on it. So

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  52:40

there's been some good questions. So it's fantastic. Um, what do you got left here? The third party cookies? Oh,

Sarah Ohle  52:52

I do have one more slide, actually. Oh, you do? Yes. So just just a couple of reminders from from Hero, a couple of things, accelerators. Learn more about our accelerator packages get you started, you can reach out to hero digital contact information there. Tiffany mentioned our cookieless POV earlier. If you're interested in learning more about that ton of great content, the address for you to download it is there. And then final reminder Adobe summits coming up pre virtual event March 15, through 17th. So if you're interested in checking out more about that learning more about personalization among a ton of other really exciting content, visit there and

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  53:39

register. Awesome. And great takeaways. We'll end on one more note here of the cookies and privacy. Any pitfalls that brands should be aware of? When it comes to that world? Any words of advice?

Scott Biondi  53:58

I'd say some of the metrics there are changing open rates, click through rates, like what was your campaign performance before and after? A lot of that stuff's changing. So everybody has different solutions on both. When it comes to engagement data, at least. Yeah, is a new world for marketers to I think. And it's not

Sarah Ohle  54:23

going back. I think that's an important thing to remember too, like this is this is a permanent change all sort of stemming from the whole privacy and trust thing. I think, when a lot of us started in digital, it was very much the wild wild west and you know, created a lot of opportunity, which is great, but now there are regulations coming in and you know, cookieless is, is part of that change that's going to be permanent and keeping that new mindset. You know, top of mind as you're going forward and playing your strategies is going to be important. Awesome,

Tiffany Serbus-Gustaveson  54:56

great takeaway. But thank you, Sarah. Thank you, Scott. so much thank you Digital Hero, we definitely encourage anybody on the line to have a follow up call with Digital Hero’s team 15 20 minutes, great information, great takeaways, and also happy to connect with anybody on the call as well. Tiffany@BWGConnect. Again, that's how we get the topics for future conversations. And we talked about everything from drop shipping, international expansion, SEO, you name it, if it's digital, we are ready to talk about it. So definitely drop me a line. Thank you guys so much, everybody. Have a wonderful week. Appreciate it. Take care, stay safe and see you in the next event.

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