B2B from a B2C point of view

Beautiful Chicago (from any point of view)

I was able to attend the 2013 Global BMA Conference last week, which was held here in Chicago. It was a jam-packed conference and I left renewed and inspired.

 

One of the sessions I found particularly interesting was called, “B2B is the New B2C: What Consumer Trends Sweeping Through the B2B World Mean for You,” given by Scot Wingo, CEO, Channel Advisor, and Charlie Peters, Senior Executive VP, Board of Directors, Emerson.

As consumers, we are changing our purchasing behavior, going online for traditional in-store transactions. Services traditionally sold together (for example, wood flooring and installation) are now being unbundled online and consumers choose between multiple installers when purchasing flooring. Bundling services is a way to add value and gain cost efficiencies over time … if services are unbundled how do we do that?

Scot did have some advice for us B2B marketers.

  • Master search
  • Increase your visibility in search results by using tools like Google Trends.

  • Engage your marketplace
  • Don’t be afraid to have conversations and consider allowing product reviews on your site.

  • Build transactional self service
  • Some sales will always be transactional; so don’t waste the sales teams’ time on these sales. Instead, create a way for customers to purchase products directly and focus the sales team on the accounts that need and want the extra service.

  • Embrace mobile
  • It’s no longer a trend … it’s part of our everyday life.

  • Invest in your brand
  • These trends haven’t affected the importance of having a well-defined brand.

    This is a very pivotal time in marketing, especially for B2B. Technology is changing faster than we can adapt to it and we have companies like Kodak, Blockbuster and Newsweek to look to as examples of what happens when we don’t keep up. This is either very exciting or terrifying.

    Me? I am excited. How about you?

    Our e-book, Shift This, is a handy compilation of just about everything you’d want to know about the shifty changes that are turning marketing practices upside-down. Including our thoughts on how to stay rightside-up. Check it out here.

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