Unlimited opportunity, unlimited growth

Driving performance through an integrated lead strategy


  • Marketing Strategy
  • Brand Strategy
  • Data Insight & Analytics
  • Paid Social
  • PPC & Display
  • Games & Interactives

Read time

10 Minutes

For over 8 years BBI has been a partner of Pulsant, the UK’s largest regional datacentre and colocation provider backed through a global equity partner. During this time, we’ve been a key part of their strategic leadership team delivering integrated marketing solutions as well as overseeing and integrating numerous acquisitions.

With data being referred to as the new oil of the digital economy, cloud and supporting technologies have rapidly evolved. Pulsant have had to transform their business to take advantage of the opportunities from the shifting landscape.

01. Objectives

The marketing challenge

Although datacentres and colocation would remain a key offering to their customers, the new world required a shift in focus that would establish Pulsant as the leading hybrid IT provider for the mid-market.

In this highly competitive and complex industry, marketing plays a critical role in driving lead acquisition. With a sales funnel that can run well over 6 months, an integrated strategy was required to both drive short term business and build for long term growth.

Our key focus was to build a strong pipeline of MQL and SQL leads, delivering highly engaging content at each step of the customer journey. This not only required a clear performance marketing strategy, but development of the Pulsant brand proposition and digital touchpoints to ensure maximum impact.

02. Insights

Uncovering insights through Customerology

Getting underneath the skin of the audience is the first key step in our unique methodology, combining analytical data from multiple sources with behavioural motivations and triggers. This approach delivers a rich playground of insights which directs channel and content strategies.

For Pulsant our approach started with pulling together a broad range of quantitative data from multiple sources to pinpoint key decision makers and personas. This included data analytics from the website, social channels, and marketing automation platform.

Many performance agencies crunch analytical data for a retrospective view but only with an objective to find out what happened. True performance requires you to ask the harder question – why it happened.

Our research identified multiple touchpoints from different stakeholders in customer businesses. Multiple customer audiences were involved through the process of sourcing and these could be grouped into separate audiences who engaged with the Pulsant brand at different stages in the decision-making funnel.

  1. 01

    At the start of engagement, functional IT staff and mid management users would research the content of a solution.

  2. 02

    This was followed up by a second cohort of users with more senior roles who would research information about the solution provider.

  3. 03

    The final audience group would be made up of senior functional role staff who would be identified as a sales qualified lead through a hard conversion such as a quote request.

In this case large consulting business, the first visitor was the senior member of staff. His conversion is followed up by a manager level staff member a month later, followed by multiple functional staff converting a short time after as the business builds information to meet a need.

31/01/201912:51Cyber Security Director
28/02/201909:27IT manager
15/03/201913:51Solutions Architect
31/01/201913:51Cloud Admin
31/01/201913:51Scale Programme Lead
31/01/201913:51Solution Architect

Using this information were then able to carry out a programme of qualitative behavioural research into each individual audience to uncover motivations, barriers and core needs. We used a mix of 3rd party analysis from leading specialists including Gartner and Forrester to develop a range of stimulus content which was then used in a series of focus groups across each audience group. The outputs allowed us to:

  1. 01

    Create a messaging framework for each audience for each step in the journey across awareness, interest, desire, acquisition and advocacy.

  2. 02

    Update the brand proposition and visual identity to create a distinctive position in the market.

  3. 03

    Establish a new website structure and content requirement to ensure we were able to capture and nurture leads.

  4. 04

    Create a performance marketing strategy cross paid, owned and gearned channels to maximise return.

03. Solution

Driving leads through multi-channel engagement

A high performing website

We delivered a completely new site, with carefully thought-out user journeys targeting specific customer personas. These were vital in developing the initial wireframes and early prototypes, allowing us to test and gather feedback for further UX improvements.

Animation and interactive components brought the site to life and gave it a distinctive identity, with an excellent user experience at the heart of everything.

The site was full integrated into HubSpot as part of their inbound marketing activity with dynamic content served to different audience groups based on their journey stage and job role.

  • 35 %

    increase in website traffic Y-o-Y

  • 20 %

    increase in dwell time on site

  • 25 %

    increase in leads and goal conversion

Driving TOTF leads through a multi-channel approach

Working with the internal sales and product teams, we identified a clear opportunity to drive additional leads for their security and compliance portfolio. In a highly competitive landscape, we needed a multi-channel campaign that would raise overall awareness of Pulsant’s market leading offer, as well as attract top of the funnel leads for nurturing.

We conducted a piece of bespoke research within our core target market to identify key insights and behaviours into IT compliance needs. We then launched a PR-driven campaign to publish the results to national and industry media, using an interactive tool to drive prospect engagement and benefit from high quality back links.

A full programme of social and inbound activity added additional leads into the funnel, using the research findings to create a variety of high-value content including webinars, whitepapers and case studies.

  • 915

    downloads, interactions and webinar sign-ups

  • 4,556

    new leads added

  • 538

    SQL’s passed to the sales teams

Pushing prospects down the funnel

Thanks to our understanding of the multiple touch points involved in the customer decision making process, our marketing strategy was tailored to provide prospects with reassuring content at every stage and guide those prospects toward conversion.

Our multi-touchpoint strategy used audience targeting based on analysis of CRM data to promote informative content including webinars to decision influencers before using rules-based remarketing to cement the relationship and share funnel advancing content through search and display advertising:

Behavioural & demographic targeted activity:

Delivered through Paid search & social

Content promotion and display advertising used to build audience awareness through informative content and webinars using social media and relevant IT industry publications.

  • 21% Reduction in cost per click
  • 28% Reduction in cost per lead
  • 100% increase in social media leads

Intent targeted activity:

Organic & paid search

High quality editorial on website used to develop increased organic search visability and overhaul of paid search activity to focus on high conversion keyword groups.

  • 5x increase in conversion rate
  • 4x increase in actual conversions

This approach positioned Pulsant as a thought leader and generated marketing qualified leads and ensured consideration of Pulsant as a solution provider as the sales journey progresses toward conversion.

Journey toward conversion

  1. 01

    Audience targeted display and LinkedIn advertising builds awareness of Pulsant to an identified audience.

  2. 02

    Users are introduced to the sales funnel with product specific landing pages featuring service guides that help to create a business case.

  3. 03

    In market audiences are targeted with search advertising segmented by location and interest to maximise conversions.

  4. 04

    Users from search marketing are directed to the most specific landing pages which detail services and provide the most local data centre to maximise user relevance.

  5. 05

    Visitors are re-engaged and nurtured through a product benefit narrative delivered through remarketing activity.

  6. 06

    Returning visitors are guided to contact forms to request further information from a technical consultant to qualify the lead for sales.

This approach is seen reflected in the percentage of opportunity stage leads generated by the different funnel stages, with the highest volume of SQL generated through high intent channels of paid and organic search, which are characterised by a higher percentage of returning visitors who had previously been exposed to our other content.

Funnel status by Channel

The adoption of this multi-touchpoint, Customerology™ informed strategy created a step change in our account performance, driving substantial reductions in cost per acquisition while increasing the volume of new contents generated through digital activity.

Sealing the deal

Whilst creating leads was a key KPI, we also worked hard to ensure that the overall conversion from MQL to Customer was as high as possible. After analysing digital lead performance together with interviews from the internal sales team, we identified an opportunity to improve the conversion process by creating a digital ‘sales aid’ that far surpassed the usual brochure or PowerPoint presentation.

We created a unique, interactive profiler to help map an organisation’s current and target cloud maturity profile against essential considerations and criteria. The easy to use tool provided an effective visual guide to plan and develop a prospects cloud roadmap and make it easy for the sales manager to map specific services and solutions to the results.

  • 9 %

    better conversion rate from lead to SQL for digital traffic

  • 75 %

    quicker conversion from lead to opportunity

04. Results

Delivering performance at every step of the customer journey

During our working relationship with Pulsant, we have successfully blended the need to drive short term leads with the broader need to establish them as a leading hybrid IT organisation. This change has opened up new markets and new opportunities away from their traditional client base.

Critical to this success has been our ability to understand market trends and the needs of the customer, enabling us to develop content-led, performance driven campaigns.

We worked closely with the team and developed a strategy that worked best for Pulsant and the results speak for themselves, thanks to the fresh approach BBI brought to the company.

Rob Davies

Chief Sales Officer

As the technology industry continues to evolve, so does our strategy and our CustomerologyTM model, allowing us to keep on top of the trends and one step ahead of the competition. 

Find out more about our unique approach to driving true performance