The “From Promotion to Emotion” white paper released by the CEB Marketing Leadership Council recently looked at how B2B buyers connect to brands and found that B2B companies had a 64 percent purchase rate when they had a high brand connection to their customers. The purchase rate was only 5 percent when companies had no brand connection.
Researchers also determined that B2B buying is extremely personal, although B2C buying is typically perceived to be more emotional. Losing time due to a poor purchase, losing credibility, and losing a job were all key stakes cited by B2B buyers surveyed for the white paper.
“Typically, B2C purchases are assumed to be more emotional than B2B purchases,” wrote the authors of the piece. “Digging deeper, the high level of emotionality in B2B is not so surprising. B2B purchases entail personal risks — far more than most B2C purchases.”
The Empowerment of the B2B Buyer
Although B2B buyers may be more emotional when making purchases than originally thought, “The Rise of the Empowered B2B End User Buyer” study conducted by Forrester Counseling and Intershop shows that they still have the upper hand.
“End user buyers are savvy online purchasers and self-empowered through new digital channels to push the guardrails of corporate procurement policies — often ignoring them altogether,” wrote the authors of the study.
The research shows that 30 percent of B2B end user buyers are typically not concerned with procurement policies at their companies, meaning they will make purchases according to their own desires. Approximately 52 percent of respondents said that they purchase items online because it’s easier and faster. Nearly 26 percent say they do so because there is a wider selection of products on the Internet.
“End user buyers are conducting research and even finalizing their purchases on popular consumer websites,” wrote the authors. “B2B sellers must market to and directly own the relationship with end user buyers by ensuring they provide the right content to deliver convenience and an experience that will engage and drive loyalty among end user buyers.”