Demand Gen Digest: Box & the Buyer Journey

 In Buyer Journey, Persona Analysis

Since 2005, Box has helped teams and organizations across industries easily share, manage, and collaborate on their most important information from anywhere, on any device.

Buyer Journey

Today, over 39 million people and 50,000 organizations – including over 52% of the Fortune 500 – trust Box with their content.

When Box was founded, the world was a very different place.

The iPhone had yet to be invented, Amazon Web Services was just a secret project, and “the cloud” was still a foggy concept. Most enterprises still relied on complicated, expensive legacy infrastructure to share and manage content, making it nearly impossible to work on mobile devices or collaborate with people outside one’s organization.

Today, the way people work is dramatically different. Technology purchases are no longer the sole purview of IT. And the need to understand a broader range of personas, content and information sources at each stage of the buying process has increased dramatically.

BoxIn late 2014, the fast-growing Box was on a mission to develop a strategic B2B demand generation plan grounded in the reality of the customer buying cycle.

They asked Demand Spring to help them by conducting primary buyer persona research and developing a set of recommendations for best engaging each persona.

The project lead was Senior Marketing Manager, Karthik A. Chandhramoulie, and I recently asked him to take a look back on both the inception and outcomes of that project.

Q. What was the catalyst for buyer journey research in your organization?

A. “Marketing needed to define the target audiences for our solution as we were expanding into vertical, IT and LOB use cases. The initial call to action came from our CMO challenging us to define our personas so we could better target our audience through online and offline channels. So we started the research process with Demand Spring in late 2014.”

Q. What was the research process like?

A. “We started by recruiting existing customers of different sizes, industries, and use cases. It was really important to include a range of customer roles so we could understand the personas involved in the buying process from start to finish. Also, we want to know what the trigger points were for evaluating Box’s solution, their criteria for comparing us to our competitors and top use cases. Over the course of the research, Demand Spring conducted interviews with seventeen different customer organizations. They covered a good cross-section of large and small organizations, IT and LOB titles, across a variety of industries and geographic locations.”

Q. What were the most important things you learned about your buyers?

A. “We learned three key things. First, and perhaps most importantly, we learned where the conversation about Box file share and synchronization solutions starts. It was not from the IT end in most cases. It came from LOB. The second thing we learned is that our awareness was low when the customer was evaluating a solution like ours, so we didn’t show up on their radar until late in the process. Finally, our website and content was not positioned according to our target personas or their buying triggers. ”

Q. How are buyer journey learnings used in your organization now?

We are using the learnings in a couple of important ways – to feed into our roadmap for website optimization and to fuel our content strategy by weaving the known trigger points in our content creation.

Buyer Persona Analysis Services

Donna Danis
Donna is responsible for Demand Spring’s Strategy Consulting line helping clients with demand generation strategies, demand generation process and practice redesign, customer buying cycle and persona analysis, sales and marketing alignment, and lead management processes.
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