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Selling Complex Products: A Comprehensive Digital Marketing Guide

Jul 16, 2021 9:30:54 AM

Complex problems sometimes require complex solutions. And maybe you’re one of those businesses offering a complex solution.

The big challenge is that the solution won’t sell if not communicated well. If you can’t communicate to your target audience about this product, and tell them what exactly it is and how it’s going to solve their pain point, you will struggle in driving conversion.

How many times have you seen a product that you didn’t understand? How many times have you visited a website, read through everything, and you were still left confused about what they do?

Exactly!

This is a problem for that business in question.

To tackle such a problem, one must adopt a digital marketing strategy that is refined, unique in nature, and fits the context of this problem. 

Of course, this is easier said than done. But if you sell complex products, here are 10 digital marketing tips that will help:

Define your buyer personas

This is the most fundamental bit. Unless you know who your target audience is and what their concerns are, you cannot create effective communication collaterals to explain your products to them in a relevant way.

For instance, a 29-year old female making $111,000 would have a different set of needs, understandings and preferences in comparison to, say, a female of the same age who makes $55,000 annually. So your messaging – the way you talk about your product and describe it – would be much different for each. Your communication ought to be tailored based on different segments of the target audience. 

As a first step, take your time to define your buyer personas. You cannot sell your products with optimal resources to people who you don’t know; this is especially important for complex products. 

An SMB business might be looking for cloud services that are affordable, while a large company may be looking for cloud solutions that have robust security features. Therefore, there would be a big difference in how you describe your product to them. 

 


Drysol did this product explainer video that connected them to their buyer persona - active and social people whose excess sweating gets embarrassing. They compensate for this problem with their clothing choices, less physical contact with others, and reduction of enjoyable activities (dancing, outdoor activities, etc) 

Discuss benefits, not features

This is selling 101. Consumers don’t really care about the features as much as how those features will benefit them. So in your communication, the focus should be on discussing those benefits. 

For example, when a big brand launches a new line of smartphones, they do list the features, but they would also focus all on how they would be beneficial to the consumers – why the consumers should care about this feature.

This is where many marketers fail. Don’t be one of them.

Don’t obsess about the features of your products. Your target audience cares less about the spec sheets and more about resolving their pain points and making their lives easier.

So, simplify your complex products by focusing on the benefits. Unlike the conventional approach of explaining the features of the products and how great it is, the video portrays how life is before and after using Slack.

Scale-up your content creation

How many times have you heard that quality is more important than quantity when it comes to content?

In 2021, this is not so true anymore. Yes, quality is important, but so is quantity. You need to produce high-quality, targeted content in large quantities. This is essential to ensure your brand has consistent and meaningful conversation with your target audience. You want to make sure you’re connected with them across channels, establishing your brand identity and value. 

Besides, when you’re offering a product that requires some explanation, you would need to produce content at scale. To explain, to tell stories, to engage.

So look at your existing content strategy and make changes. Focus just as much on the quantity.

Publish content (or different types, formats, varieties) that is relevant to your buyer personas across all major distribution or communication platforms.

 


Through this video, HUB international scaled up its content strategy by turning its blogs into animated videos. This helped them engage their audience and stand out.

Be “more” available

Say a person reads your blog post and has a few questions. How can they reach you? And when indeed they connect with you, how long do you take to respond?

When someone sends your team an email, what’s the response time?

When someone leaves a comment on your Facebook post, how quickly does your team respond?

How often do you encourage people to reach out to you if they have questions?

What’s the public perception of your customer service/support?

You need to be more available for your audience to address their questions and concerns. Moreover, you need to assure them that your team is always available to provide them prompt assistance.

When you’re offering a complex product, people will reach out to you with questions. You need to be on your toes to offer them personalized assistance. 

Humanize your brand

Consumers don’t buy products; they buy experiences. This is especially true in competitive markets and with complex, costly products; but it’s broadly true for everyone.

Before buying your solution, people want to know who you are, your brand, story and vision. They would want to know if they can trust you before they would want to engage with you and make a purchase decision.

Here’s an excellent example of what we’re talking about. An investment bank is an entity that doesn’t immediately conjure up concepts like personality, humanity, warmth, or a rewarding journey. But this video almost brings out the “heart and soul”, so to speak, of BNY Mellon:


A good brand presence shortens the marketing funnel and boosts conversion.

So you need to invest more in your brand-building. And the first step in that is to humanize your digital presence.

Give up that static, robotic identity and embrace a more dynamic, human-like personality that consumers find interesting and want to engage with.

Think of some of the best and most loved brands in the world. Tesla. Apple. Harley-Davidson. They all seem to have their own unique personality and culture. Even though ultimately they’re just companies that exist to make a profit, they feel almost like religious entities, complete with a loyal and almost cult-like following. 

How did they become like that? It was no accident. 

An improved brand identity can enhance your engagement rate, which can then subsequently do wonders in improving the sales of your complex product.

Invest big on explainer animated videos

This is a must for companies that offer complex, hard-to-understand products.

Animated videos are already one of the key digital marketing trends in 2021. Many of the world’s leading brands are betting big on this. Don’t get left behind. Invest in explainer animated videos; distribute these videos on different relevant channels.

Explainer animated videos simplify complex concepts and integrate creative storytelling into their message. They hook attention instantly and drive higher engagement. Plus, they also have high entertainment value. All these benefits add to deliver better ROI.


So, connect with an animated explainer video company and create explainer videos for your website and social media platforms. For best results, create multiple videos aiming at different buyer personas or target segments. Personalizing your communication is one of the best CRO strategies.

Remember that this depends on good teamwork between you and the animated explainer video company. Come up with better ideas and concepts to simplify your complex solution, and make people understand the benefits that you’re bringing to the table. 

Promote video testimonials

Who better to explain and promote your products to consumers, than fellow consumers who use them?

Video testimonials from customers are a powerful tool to drive conversion. They are even more rewarding when you offer products that are complex and challenging to explain.

Have your customers record video of them and ask them to share how the product solved their pain points, and the benefits they enjoy because of it. Or audio, paired with appealing and friendly animation, as with Mass Mutual’s series of customer testimonials:


Your target audience will respond positively when they hear good things from other customers, and it will help them understand your product much better.

Identify what not to do

For the best digital marketing ROI, it’s as much about the things that you shouldn’t do.

Create a list of things that you shouldn’t invest your time and money in.

For instance, if there’s a segment that is unlikely to convert, maybe don’t create content targeting them; at least not in the early stages, when you’re trying to optimize your spending.

Another example is that if short-form blog posts aren’t delivering you the desired results, then there’s no need to keep doing it. 

When you offer complex products where you need to spend more in the top-of-the-funnel stages, you must recognize things that drain your attention and resources.

Help customers visualize outcome

Sometimes, just telling people about the benefits they would get may not be enough to make them take action. So you have to make them visualize those benefits and outcomes.

Storytelling is the key here. Stories are powerful assets that can help people visualize your products and understand how they will be benefitted.

Animated videos can play a big role even here. 

Whether it’s small story-oriented clips or a long video – whatever you and your animated explainer video company decide – animation can be strikingly powerful in creating contextualized impressions in the consciousness of the target audience. Take this video for Sensei, for example:


This can improve your brand identity and recall value, which in turn increases the chances of conversion. 

So, however you do it, make your audience visualize the outcome of using your products to optimize your marketing spending. 

Deliver on your promises

This is quite obvious, but worth mentioning.

Complex products in particular depend a lot on retention and word-of-mouth promotion for scalability. So it’s essential that you deliver on all your promises to existing customers.

A happy and satisfied customer will purchase from you again. More importantly, they would trigger WOMM and bring you newer acquisitions. And if you have a distinct and appealing brand presence, your customers can even become your ambassadors. In the long run, the benefits will be huge. 

So be sure of all the claims and promises you’re making. And stay true to your word. If not, your growth will be very slow, if at all.

 


This video by FH CANN explains how they have delivered on their promises and provided best-in-class services to their customers since 1999.

Final words

As mentioned earlier, complex products require complex solutions. 

Making your target audience understand such complex solutions may not be easy; but it’s not impossible. The right approach, backed by swift execution, will not only help you achieve this but even amplify the results to bring you higher ROI.

All these tips we’ve covered will keep you on the right track in selling complex products with fitting digital marketing strategies.

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