SOCIAL NETWORKS ARE THE X-RAY GOGGLES FOR TECHNOLOGY BUYERS AND THEY HAVE CHANGED THE WAY PEOPLE BUY THINGS.
Today, customers and prospects expect brands to be in conversation with them and to recognize that customers want to be in control. Prospects expect to be listened to and to have unlimited access to the information they need to make decisions.
The challenge is, B2B software providers expect their marketing teams to exert control over customer and prospect perceptions, and to influence them with brilliant positioning.
It can be scary to relinquish control:
- Product developers fear losing competitive advantage when customers expose what the product does well.
- Customer service reps fear that if they don’t take care of a ticket quickly, the customer may write a negative review or tweet.
- Marketers are expected to boost a company’s reputation and brand through brilliant advertising or branding, but since customers are talking to each other and your prospects, brand reputation is really in the hands of your customers.
- Sales teams are expected to close deals and counter objections, but 50% of the time the purchase decision has either been completely made or mostly made before the salesperson ever gets the lead.
B2B marketers have a choice: to engage, or not engage. Letting fear take the lead and not engaging keeps your team in the dark and forces sales to deal with objections and biases they’ve never had to deal with before. Engaging has its benefits; being naked can be an advantage.
HERE ARE 3 REASONS WHY B2B MARKETERS NEED TO EMBRACE TRANSPARENCY:
YOUR FUTURE CUSTOMERS WILL FIND YOU
Prospects expect access to all the information they need to make decisions, and they will find that information. By engaging in the conversation, you have an opportunity to amplify what customers are already saying.
TRANSPARENCY BUILDS TRUST
By staying informed of the current conversations, your sales teams will have more confidence in the problems you are solving for customers, and prospects will have more confidence in your sales team.
OUT-INNOVATE THE COMPETITION
Take back some control by re-designing your alliance with the people who really do shape the future of the company—the customers. Find your blind spots, create better messaging, and learn from the organic discussions that happen between customers and their peers.
When transparency is embraced, it raises the game for the whole industry and it forces you to compete on innovation and execution.