So you’re a marketer who needs to advertise a product or service to a wide audience ... but where do you even start?

Traditional marketing techniques will first ask what the demographics are of the ideal customer. Take baby food, for example. Following old school techniques would propose that the ideal customer is female and between the ages of 18 and 40, as these individuals are more likely to be caregivers who need to buy these products. Pretty general, don’t you think?

Intent-based marketing, on the other hand, is interested in the behaviour of people. Instead of asking what the ideal customer looks like, it asks why is the ideal customer on this website in the first place?

Has this wet your appetite? Then please take a seat and enjoy the read as media update’s Maryna Steyn serves up the scoop on all things intent-based marketing.

The gist of intent-based marketing

Intent-based marketing has this name because it looks at the intentions of a potential buyer — why are there specific people on your website? What do they do when visiting the site?

The data collected through this approach is used to answer marketers’ questions about what customers want to do on your site. If we stick to the previous example of baby food, we can illustrate the answer to this question like this:

Customers visit a website that sells foodstuff because they want to buy organic baby food. Therefore, a marketer needs to target individuals searching for similar products.

Essentially, this approach acts like little flags that say “look here” for customers who are already in the market for a particular category of products.

Marketing with intention

Instead of fishing in the open ocean, hoping to catch a target that will be interested in your product or service, intent-based targeting means you’re shooting those specific fish that are already lined up in a barrel! Exciting, right?

Tools such as Facebook and Google Ads make it possible to place ads in front of these specific searchers. This process is known as retargeting and is a way of reminding visitors about your products and offerings long after they have left your website. These campaigns help to improve sales and build customer loyalty.

Sounds too good to be true? Well, media update is here to tell you that it’s not. Intentionally marketing to potential buyers who frequent your website for particular products or services does result in higher sales numbers. Let’s take a closer look:

If you remember the sales funnel, you know that it’s quite the journey to generate leads in the awareness phase and move them to the lead nurturing stages of interest and evaluation.

What intent-based marketing does is it ‘jumps the queue’ to find the buyers who are already ready to buy.

Intentional content marketing

When it comes to content marketing, retargeting is clearly not an option. So what’s the solution, then? It’s simple: Your content needs to respond to a searcher’s intent.

Again, a content marketer needs to look at why a potential client is visiting your website or blog. Why are they there?

This question can be answered through thorough research into visitor behaviour with tools such as Google Analytics or a social media tracking and reporting service.

By identifying what your consumers are looking for on the website, a marketer can determine why they are there and adjust their content strategies to give consumers the information that they are looking for.

In this way, lead nurturing happens by supplying the information at the right time and helping visitors blossom into a buyer.

Do you use intent-based marketing in your business? Let us know in the comments below.

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Are you curious to find out more about targeting? Read about how Consumer needs should guide ad-targeting decisions.
*Image courtesy of Canva