If buying behavior in BtoB was already to a certain extent complexity, the intrusion of digital and social media into the equation plunges many salespeople into theincomprehension. By compiling the information published by the DemandGenreport and Salesforces studies, I suggest that you step into the shoes of the BtoB buyer to better understand it and succeed in your digital transition …

I am getting younger and younger …

Today, I’m 45, but in 5 years, I’ll be under 30. ”

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If today, the majority of BtoB prospects are from the 40/50 age group, this figure is constant evolution… on the decline ! We cannot say that the advent of digital and social media is at the origin of this change which is simply demographic, but it is by observing the evolution of purchasing behavior that we can get away realize.

According to the study “B2B Path to Purchase Study 2014 led by Google and Millward Brown Digital, today near 46% of professionals come from the generation born with the Internet.

… And connected

“I use more and more search engines, social networks, discussion forums or emails, and I decipher more and more the strings. ”

Indeed, today, prospects are more and more lucid about the presence of digital marketing. In addition, the increasing use of smartphones and tablets constitutes a new string to the professional arc. We must therefore be able to offer content who are optimized for consultation on this type of support.

I take the time to buy…

One thing has not changed with the digital age is the length of the decision cycle BtoB prospects. Even more, now that they can put all the solutions and all the providers in competition, 40% of professionals say they wait longer than before to contact a supplier.

… Compare the alternatives…

“The pervasiveness of information pushes me to sort between the true and the false. ”

The quantity of information accessible to everyone thanks to digital technology makes prospects more demanding and more attentive to the quality of content. Suppliers’ websites, emails, newsletters, blogs and social networks are critically scrutinized by professionals and weighed against each other. 55% of professionals say they have a growing interest in digital compared to the phone or direct meeting in stores.

It saves them time and compares more alternatives.

… Understand the product…

“I am fond of video, which allows me to understand the usefulness and the functioning of a product. Above all, it allows me to project myself in its use. ”

The video is the headlight support initiated by the digital revolution, it is taking up more and more space in the decision-making process, which explains why the viewing of videos by professionals has increased by 52% in two years.

… and seek the advice of my peers

“Being able to quickly and simply find feedback on the company and its achievements is reassuring. ”

Social networks are taking decisive place in the consumer relationship in BtoC while in BtoB, they remain little exploited.

Professionals use Twitter at the end of the cycle to collect opinions on a provider or to select it. The presence and responsiveness of companies on social networks are becoming essential to remain competitive. Making yourself available and accessible is the novelty of digital.

For exemple, 72% of professionals are informed beforehand via social networks when they engage in a buying process.

If the company makes a good impression on me …

When I visit his website, I wait for him to be simple and intuitive to navigate there. If I receive an email from a company, I appreciate that it is addressed to me in a way custom and that she offers me a adapted offer to my needs. ”

This is quite paradoxical and at the same time quite logical: the reign of digital and social media is that of the user experience. While digital automates almost everything, BtoB prospects who are used to a personalized business relationship require the same level of attention despite the virtual barrier.

… That its content is relevant and qualitative…

\”Find a content that directly meets my needs, which is dynamic, shareable or which redirects to additional content, gives me a modern and professional image of the company. It proves that it knows how to evolve and is attentive to new trends.

For 65% of professionals, the quality of content is decisive in the purchase decision.

… I would find it appropriate for the company to contact me

The great digital revolution is that salespeople only intervene at the end of the BtoB consumer buying cycle. According to a study published in the Harvard Business review, 57% of the purchase decision is made before I even get in touch with a supplier.

In short, for understand new digital purchasing behaviors, it’s essential to know and differentiate the level of interest of its prospects using scoring and marketing automation tools. Likewise, it is necessary to adopt an inbound marketing approach in order to produce the highest quality content possible to meet the needs of prospects and establish their quality as an expert.