Millennials’ B2B Purchasing Decisions Prove to be Socially Informed

A new study published by the IMB Institute for Business Value shows that 36 percent of millennials weigh the opinions of friends or family before making a B2B purchase, making them more “social” than past generations — specifically baby boomers.

Additionally, 56 percent of them feel like they make better decisions at work when they consult a wide variety of people for their input. Researchers discovered that only 49 percent of baby boomers claimed to be motivated in the decision-making process by receiving advice from their colleagues.

Nearly 89 percent of millennials believe their friends’ comments more than B2B companies’ claims. Furthermore, 93 percent said they had made a purchase after hearing about it from a friend or relative, proving the value of word-of-mouth to this demographic.

IBM Study Screenshot

“Because key people influencing millennials’ decision to buy often come from outside the business, vendors need to consider their brand reputation, even beyond their normal trade circles,” wrote the authors of the report. “With the help of data analytics, vendors can learn more about their clients’ ecosystems and create new marketing strategies to reach a boarder audience of influencers.”

Is the Influence of Baby Boomers Declining?

A report titled “The Benefits of Marketing and Advertising to Baby Boomers” from Media Space Solutions claims that marketers shouldn’t give up on this demographic just yet. This is primarily because of their average household income, which is 55 percent greater than post-boomers. This group has a total of $2.4 trillion in annual income in the U.S., which means they have a large amount of money to spend.

Two-thirds of baby boomers shop online, 36 percent of them own a smartphone, and 27.4 million of them utilize social networking. Despite their reputation for being technology-challenged, these statistics show that baby boomers are connected to some of the many digital channels used by marketers.

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Scott Stone — Scott Stone, Advertising & E-Business Manager, Cisco Eagle

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