- Changes in buyer and customer behavior are causing B2B organizations to rethink buyer-seller interactions
- Innovative companies use advanced analytics across the revenue engine to understand and deliver a seamless buyer experience
- However, without a thorough understanding of buyer behavior, selecting and delivering value from technology investments can be challenging
Trying to understand honeybees by only observing the behavior of a single bee is a quick path to misunderstanding. Bees are a eusocial species, meaning they live in complex societies with an advanced social structure. Eusocial animals live with multiple generations that cooperate in the care of offspring that are not their own and have a highly specialized division of labor among individual members — that division of labor can even change as each bee ages!
Similarly, a traditional approach to lead management leaves many sales and marketing organizations blind to buyer behavior. A bold statement? Perhaps. However, the word “lead” is often inaccurate and forces a focus on an individual, obscuring the fact that most B2B purchases are made by teams of people who form a buying group. Within that buying group, each individual plays a different role, moves through the decision-making process at a different pace, and may have different criteria and objectives.
For B2B marketing and sales professionals to fully understand a buying group, we must consider the following:
- Who is engaged?
- Is the company and person a good fit?
- What are the various roles and responsibilities in the buying process?
- What personas and individuals form this buying group?
- How engaged is each individual?
- How likely are they to buy and where are they in the buyer’s journey?
- What is the business pain they are trying to solve?
- Is our company’s solution a good fit for this pain?
- How important is solving this business pain for the organization?
- What else can we sell them?
This is a problem that is not exclusive to marketing or sales; instead, it must be addressed across the revenue engine so these functions can work together to chart a winning path. Technology powered by AI can help us understand buying group behaviors and update our interactions to deliver a consistent set of interactions that meet buyers’ unique needs at each stage of the buying process.
I hope you will join Kerry Cunningham and me at SiriusDecisions 2019 Technology Exchange in Denver, CO, where we will present “The Brains Behind the Operation: Orchestrating the Non-Linear, Real-Time Buyer’s Journey.” This keynote session will explore how sales and marketing professionals can leverage technology to gain a greater understanding of their buyers — hope to see you there on December 10-11!