B2b buyer experience

Updated on
May 31, 2024

Winning with the Best Buyer Experience

To succeed in today's market, companies must prioritize the buyer experience. This involves aligning the sales process with how buyers prefer to purchase and centering on their needs. From analyzing the top 100 SaaS companies, here are three critical buyer-first criteria and insights:

  1. Accessible: Quick and convenient access to sales teams is crucial. 61% of top B2B SaaS companies use a calendar scheduler or respond within 24 hours.
  2. Usable: Offering hands-on product usage is key. 31% now provide interactive demos, up from 17% last year.
  3. Visible: Transparent pricing and packaging matter. 68% now display pricing pages, an increase from 57% last year.

These trends highlight the importance of making it easy for buyers to engage with and understand your product.

B2B marketing and B2b buyer experience

In B2B marketing, there is often a tendency to build programs based on a linear progression model. This model suggests that potential leads become increasingly ready for sales as they engage more with marketing activities. According to this approach, the more touchpoints a lead has with marketing, the higher their score and perceived intent, ultimately leading them to fill out a demo request form or receive proactive outreach from sales teams.

This linear progression logic creates a perception that the most engaged leads are the best leads, and those with minimal engagement are less likely to convert. However, decades of consumer data challenge this assumption. Notably, in 1959, Andrew Ehrenberg discovered that buying behavior follows a Negative Binomial Distribution (NBD). This distribution shows that most buyers are infrequent purchasers, and focusing solely on heavy buyers is not a sustainable growth strategy.

Applying Ehrenberg's findings to B2B marketing, especially in the context of content consumption, reveals a crucial insight: strategies that concentrate on highly engaged audiences may neglect a broader pool of potential buyers who engage less frequently. This approach can lead to wasted marketing budgets and missed opportunities to reach those who truly need awareness.

Real-world observations support this perspective for b2b marketing success. Throughout my career, I've seen numerous instances where leads with minimal marketing engagement became valuable customers, while highly engaged leads did not convert. This discrepancy is often attributed to the concept of dark social, suggesting that some engagement occurs out of sight. However, relying on this explanation may introduce bias and overlook the reality that not every customer needs to interact extensively with marketing content to make a purchase decision.

The key takeaway is that b2b marketing should aim to reach as many people as possible, creating and maintaining broad awareness. Instead of focusing on converting every lead into a highly engaged prospect, marketers should prioritize extending their reach to a wide audience, ensuring that infrequent engagement still translates into awareness and potential sales. Infrequent engagement with a large audience is more effective than intense engagement with a narrow group, as it ensures that the brand remains top-of-mind for a broader segment of the market.

By adopting this approach, B2B marketers can align their strategies more closely with actual market consumption patterns, ultimately driving greater overall sales and growth.

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