How COVID-19 Has Shifted Business-to-Business Buying Behaviors
More than a year of living and working during a pandemic has impacted more than just our personal lives and consumer behaviors, it has impacted the way businesses do business with each other. Transformation in business-to-business (B2B) purchase paths may be here to stay, and those working in this sector must deeply understand new ways to engage.
Moving It All Online
So what’s changed in the past year? There is a noted absence of the traditional face-to-face interactions, and the decision stage has moved to digital. Overall, this is translating to a virtual buying process. B2B sales communication styles have changed from synchronous to asynchronous in this environment, foregoing “quick questions” from buyers and eliminating some traditional touchpoints with sellers. Gathering stakeholders together is increasingly difficult with the pandemic, and streamlined, professional online demos are critical, especially in certain sectors.
New B2B Messaging Needs
There is an accelerated need for empathy in marketing communications. For example, in Logica’s ongoing Future of Money Study, we found that, for financial brands, communicating with empathy was essential—and this holds true for marketing messaging during the B2B purchase journey too. The extreme disruption of the past year has left everyone reeling, so understanding the specific pain points that are emerging and addressing them directly with compassion is not only the right thing to do, but it can also build a foundation for better predicting behaviors.
Using Purchase Journey Research
Past data on the B2B buyer is no longer valid due to massive disruptions to the sales process, and gathering new insights is the only way to understand the “new” digital buyer on their purchasing journey. The more you dig into these changes and their effects, the better chance you have to create the right engagement strategy and experience, identify where the vital touchpoints are along the new journey and, ultimately, lead someone down the path to purchase.
How can you use market research to understand your B2B buyer’s new journey to decision making? Designing and implementing a thoughtful study is the key to answering your questions and obtaining the most useful insights:
The right buying decision research will make the difference in increased acquisition and retention of customers. Want to learn more? Reach out to us.