The B2B buyer’s journey includes every step your customers take on their path to purchasing your products or services.
If you mapped out all the different decisions and interactions your customers make from the moment they identify a business need to when they decide to buy, you’d have a clear picture of your buyer’s journey.
This path to purchase has evolved over time, and today’s buyers will do most of their research independently online. This leaves fewer opportunities for sales to influence the decision-making process. It can also create a blurrier line between the marketing and sales handoff.
So, how do you align your B2B sales process with your buyer’s journey? We’ll explore how you can streamline your sales funnel to improve the buying experience.
For starters, you’ll generally have more people involved in the B2B buyer’s journey. B2C is likely to be one person, whereas a B2B customer could be a whole team of stakeholders. And since the transaction will be a lot larger, that means more people to convince and a longer sales pipeline.
This initial stage of your customer’s journey is where you build awareness about the products and services your company offers. Building brand awareness online is all about connecting with your target audience. Examples of ways you can do this include, content creation, SEO keyword research, and social media marketing. These will help your customers find you when they’re researching so they can get to know your brand.
It’s also good to consider the channels your customers and their stakeholders are most likely to use. According to new Gartner research, the amount of information available means B2B buyers spend very little time actually communicating with sellers. The right digital marketing strategy will therefore work wonders in bringing buyers into the sales funnel for the next phase of their buying journey.
Once you have brought stakeholders onto their B2B buying journey, how do you offer your services to them in such a way that it resolves their pain points and makes them loyal customers? This is where audience and customer research play a crucial role. It also includes research on your competitors and identifying the areas they lack, and how your own services can bridge those gaps.
Talk to your buyers to collect as much data as possible, conduct case studies, and engage with their own sales and marketing teams. You may want to prioritise customers by tiers to decide which ones generate the maximum return on investment (ROI) and market to them accordingly. The consideration phase is about putting your brand above the competition in a confident, lasting way, with buyer data that is always current and relevant.
Now that you have secured your customer base, it’s time to close the sale. This is not the end of the B2B buyer’s journey; rather, customer satisfaction from a successful sale provides the start for the journey to start again. Strategies to achieve this include product demos, independent testimonials, and other marketing and sales tactics.
All the digital marketing strategies and audience research you have done up to this point should be key in ensuring the sale goes smoothly and as expected. You should have zeroed in on the right products targeted to the right tier of customers, keeping their needs and pain points in mind. Your sales data should be an indicator of how efficient your conversion funnel is – and if a new strategy needs to be implemented to draw in new customers and keep existing customers loyal.
Understanding how the B2B buyer’s journey has evolved can be overwhelming, but with the right digital marketing agency guiding you, you can maximise your sales and marketing process . At One Stop Media, we use real data and real analytics to understand your company’s process and how best to reach your customers. Contact us today to know more about how our digital strategy can help boost your business.