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    ReallyB2B Insights

    Learn the latest B2B marketing industry trends, techniques and news stories on our B2B blog to stay ahead of your competition

    Unlock the power of audience insights: How Arden University propelled themselves into the B2B world


    In a recent Bellwether Report by the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA), it was found that 11.4% of companies had cut research budgets, resulting in the fifth consecutive quarter of decline[1]. Now, let’s not underestimate the power of this result – marketers reducing their research spend is crazy! How can businesses market and sell their products to audiences they know little to nothing about? It’d be like trying to sell sand in a desert. Audience/market research is one of the most (if not the most) valuable activities a marketing team can undertake. The more information companies can gather on their audience, the easier and more profitable their marketing and sales will be. It boggles the mind that some firms are reducing their investment in this area. Let’s explore how research and analysis can be used to its full potential.


    Know your audience and see results

    Arden University has a proud heritage of providing flexible and accessible higher education – providing both online and blended learning degree courses that meet the changing needs of modern life. Having achieved some success with their apprenticeships programme for B2B customers, they wanted to capitalise on this and drive exponential growth. This is when they contacted ReallyB2B with the goal of attracting fewer, but higher volume B2B employer clients, from large corporate enterprises.

    Before we started actual marketing, we knew we’d need to carry out extensive research. We began with a comprehensive analysis of the corporate market and the key challenges faced by HR and L&D professionals – both pre- and post-Covid. By doing this, we could identify the unique elements of Arden University’s proposition, against the competition. It was the combination of Arden University’s USPs against other blended learning solutions providers in the market, that enabled us to identify the true ‘white space’ that Arden University operate in.

    We ran several methodologies to build a representative picture of the market – including Discovery sessions with key Arden University stakeholders to uncover strengths, weaknesses, USPs and common objections they were facing. We also ran external interviews with L&D experts across Arden University’s key target audience, to better understand first-hand the real challenges being faced. Desk-based research was undertaken which included competitor analysis, highlighting trends in HR and DiSC personality profiling. We then consolidated all learnings with additional secondary research, using supplementary profiling tools, to gain an in-depth view of the target audience needs.


    Why was this important?

    Using the comprehensive information we had gathered, and the insights we had mined from the data, we knew not only who to speak to within the audience, but also how to converse with them, and what channels would generate the best results. In the end, we chose to utilise interactive content (as part of the multi-channel mix) that would maximise engagement from the time-poor decision-makers. Overall, the campaign generated 487% of pipeline revenue… as well as 154% of MQL target for leads generated. Plus, the campaign went on to win a B2B Marketing Award for best corporate decision-maker targeted campaign. Would this have been possible without a great deal of time and effort dedicated to the research stage of the campaign? – absolutely not!


    See how research is used in successful campaigns

    ReallyB2B at B2B Marketing's Ignite

    If you’d like to hear more about getting clients to ‘buy into’ the idea of comprehensive research or how you can do this type of investigation at your own business, then you’re in luck. On Thursday 29th of June, one of ReallyB2B’s leading Account Directors, Clare Rhodes, will be joined on stage at B2B Marketing’s B2B Marketing’s Ignite London 2023  by Caroline Evans, Corporate Development Director at Arden University and Russell Parsons, Editor-in-chief at Marketing Week. The purpose of this session is to not only discuss this award-winning campaign and the importance of audience research, but also…

    • How to use customer research to identify and emerge into new markets
    • Simple yet effective research methods you can use in your business
    • The principles of DiSC profiling and how it can improve your segmentation
    • Plus much more

    You can catch the full recording of our session at B2B Ignite by clicking here.

    Want to hear more about audience insights now?

    B2B Marketing Podcast with ReallyB2B

    ReallyB2B is a team of award-winning B2B marketing solutions experts that help brands understand the B2B market and become better connected with their audiences – to maximise sales opportunities & achieve business growth. This means there’s more than just one specialist you can speak to about the latest insights and innovations in B2B marketing. With this in mind, if you’d like to hear our Client Services Director, Angie Coombe, discuss not just the Arden University campaign, but also the importance of in-depth research, simply check out the B2B Marketing Podcast episode here…


    Episode 78: Breaking B2B – How Really B2B helped Arden University crack the corporate market

    Alternatively, if you’d like to speak to one of our experts about how we can help you uncover priceless insights and supercharge your marketing activity, simply call 0207 970 4123 or email