Business-to-business (B2B) customer experience (CX) has been rated in the top three objectives for business in 2017 and is considered critical by 95 per cent of marketers.
Regardless of your company size, if your target market is other businesses, the customer experience is now recognised as important as it is in business to consumer (B2C) marketing.
The 2017 Green Hat/ADMA B2B Marketing Report shows Best-in-Class B2B firms understand their buyers. They develop buyer personas, map the customer journey and map content that supports that journey. With all eyes on CX, taking these steps can help transform a B2B business into a customer-centric one with customer experience at the core.
At the end of the day, the B2B buyer is a consumer as well. Their B2C experience is generally more streamlined and pleasurable than in B2B.
B2B marketers know it is significantly easier to get a new order from a current customer than a new prospect. To this end, CX is becoming a competitive differentiator and can become more important than product and price over the next few years.
B2B customers who continue to be delighted with their provider’s product or service will be prepared to pay more for the privilege, even if the offering is not as feature-rich as some competitors.
Best practice B2B firms align their sales, marketing and service teams to ensure a consistent customer journey and reinforce CX as a compelling value-add.
B2C vendors like Amazon and Apple start their product development with CX in mind and work back from there.
B2C companies know they have a short timeline (minutes at most, often seconds) to wow the consumer. They therefore have no choice but to be engaging, timely and personal, backed up by great service.
These consumer experiences set the baseline for what digital and offline engagement should look and feel like in B2B. This becomes even more relevant as digital-savvy millennials assume the majority of decision-making roles in business. Customers will begin to abandon B2B sellers in droves if their experience doesn’t match up with what they now consider as the new norm.