Consider this your cheat sheet for explaining how microsites serve an important role in the marketing mix—especially in initiatives that are demand generation-focused.
For both B2B buyers and B2B marketers, it comes down to three issues: relevance, access, and control.
Why Microsites Matter to B2B Buyers
Immediate access to relevant content: Whether they’re C-suite decision makers or rank-and-file influencers, B2B buyers don’t have time to deep-dive through corporate websites for content relevant to their pain points and position in the buying cycle. A microsite instantly aligns content to a visitor’s area of interest or persona.
Easy sharing: Rarely is a single person responsible for B2B purchases, so being able to share highly relevant content easily and quickly is a big plus. Sharing a single microsite URL and directing colleagues to one place (instead of collecting and sending bits and pieces) greatly streamlines the process.
Personal connection: Microsites that include a PURL (personal URL, e.g., http://www.sitename.com/jane) enable a completely tailored experience for each visitor. That could mean the B2B buyer not only receives content appropriate to their role, they may also have direct access to and information about their dedicated sales rep. A microsite could also include an area where information requested by the B2B buyer can be uploaded and archived.
Why Microsites Matter to B2B Marketers
You’ll capture more valuable leads with the microsite’s sharp hook than the corporate site’s wide net. (Naturally, you need to do testing and optimization to ensure this is done well.) A corporate website serves more successfully as the central repository for an organization’s traffic and complete content.
Pipeline profiling: Based on how B2B buyers interact with and consume content on the microsite, you can align them with business rules that will determine your next steps. Based on this pipeline profiling, you can decide whether to send them as leads to sales, or put them into a specific nurture program to receive additional content.
Control of content and production: Let’s face it, corporate websites often become battlegrounds for control; every department wants their content to take priority. Creating a microsite gives you control to do and choose what’s needed, so you can sidestep company politics and delays.
Now, the next time you hear, “Microsites are a dying breed. Corporate websites will reign supreme” (as I did recently from an esteemed analyst), come back to this post, see if their proposed alternatives address B2B demand generation needs, and let me know your views.
Of course, not every microsite is a good microsite. See 10 Best Practices for B2B Demand Generation Microsites for guidance.