Whenever you mention the abbreviation B2B in the marketing world, it’s not uncommon to see a marketer’s face do one of two things: cringe or go blank.
In part, blame it on the mystique often built up around the B2B buyer. The contrast between B2B and B2C buying behaviors lends itself to the idea that these consumers, as people, are totally different from you and I. That when it comes to shopping for a solution in line with their needs, they speak an entirely different language.
A marketer’s approach in connecting with these types of buyers may certainly differ from that of B2C buyers, but the value of content in relation to the buyer’s journey remains the same. After all, B2B buyers are themselves B2C buyers, as well. They have hobbies, they surf social channels outside of LinkedIn and they can appreciate the value of a cohesive brand narrative.
As you consider the personas at play with regard to your brand’s B2B audience, consider these four factors that make a consumer the right B2B buyer to pursue.
They’re a B2B Buyer That’s Defined Pain Points
As Entrepreneur discusses, the modern B2B customer is more complex in nature. They’re mid-career, tech-savvy and pro personalization. And at the start of the B2B buyer journey, they’ve clearly defined their pain points.
If you compare this to B2C customers, it mirrors those in any top-of-the-funnel awareness stage. As a consumer, this B2B individual may not have a crystal clear vision of what they need to solve their problem, but they certainly know there is one. More importantly, they’ve been driven—by frustration, request or necessity—to start searching for solutions.
They’re a B2B Buyer That’s Done Their Research
Innovation by your brand’s sales reps to reach customers won’t always prove beneficial to conversion. This is because 59 percent of B2B buyers today prefer to conduct research online rather than speak directly to someone from sales.
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise when you consider online behavior as a whole, regardless of the buyer type. At any given point in time, people have access to an influx of information at their fingertips. The need for a middle-man becomes less important when consumers can sift through content, comparing and contrasting the value presented across potential solutions.
They’re a B2B Buyer That’s Secured Buy-in from Upper Management
The right B2B buyer for your brand to pursue further is one that has clearly indicated interest—through lead form submission, engagement with digital ads or something else—and secured buy-in from upper management.
As important as it may be to secure the consideration of this buyer, it can only lead to conversion with materials that also speak to higher-ups. This is why it often proves valuable to market to these buyers in a way that conveys an understanding of what they’ll have to overcome internally. Remember, they’ll have to present to those further up the chain of command.
They’re a B2B Buyer That Considered the Finer Details
Indicators of conversion are likely to come down to the finer details. By this, we mean things like implementation, initial costs, customer support, etc.
With their aforementioned pain points and a defined budget outlined, the right B2B buyer will narrow their decision to those who can best showcase an ability to turn promises into action. Their decision, after all, will impact not just themselves but the business they represent. It only makes sense for them to seek out a solution that can deliver with relative ease before signing on the dotted line.
How can content fill the gaps of your B2B buyer’s journey? Contact the team at PowerPost today for a free consultation.