Some would argue that technology has pushed us to lose touch with people and our surroundings, yet strengthened our connection simultaneously. On one side of the coin, a study showed the average person spends 3 hours and 15 minutes on their phone where they disconnect almost entirely from their surroundings. But, on the flipside, they could spend those hours connecting with people all over the world.
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For B2B trading, technology has only strengthened the connection between buyers and sellers – enabling businesses to connect with other brands on a more personal level through social media, as one example. Social media influences buyers up to 84%, one study found. That’s just one avenue to look at – let’s explore the ways technology has helped deepen the connection between business and buyer.
The rise of social media has led to 1.38 billion active users – that number being a combination of personal and business accounts. According to Statista, the average person spends 145 minutes per day on a social media app. That’s billions of people and hours a day – equalling a great opportunity to strengthen buyer-to-business connections.
Plus, primarily, it’s a free and simple tool to use – and it’s the most popular B2B marketing tactic. However, it doesn’t have to be considered a marketing tactic, and you don’t need to run a campaign with a marketing agency. As it stands, LinkedIn is the most popular marketing tool for B2B brands. LinkedIn is free, easy to use, and a post a day will keep your competitors away.
LinkedIn can be used to grow a community, grow your own network, and promote business – whether it be a product, service, or general information. Interestingly, more than half of B2B buyers have used LinkedIn to help them make a purchase.
Top tip: Consider using UpWork or partnering with a content creation agency to create informative and captivating posts to share with your LinkedIn network – it will help to deepen the connection as you provide meaningful content more than a line or two of text will.
Loyalty Reward Programs
Loyalty reward programs are an excellent way of deepening the connection between you and your buyers and helping to push sales through the roof – it’s a rewarding relationship for both you and your buyer, and it’s easy if you use Incentivesmart. They have developed a software package that helps brands retain loyal customers, gets customers referring new buyers in, or simply gets people talking about your brand.
One study found that 73% of buyers think loyalty programs should be a way of businesses showing how loyal they are to them, rather than the other way round – which proves why it’s a rewarding relationship for both. The same study concluded 43% would spend more if they were signed up to a loyalty program through a customer loyalty agency.
Top tip: An Incentives scheme agency can help you create a robust and enticing rewards package that draws people in.
Real-Time Customer Support
Waiting hours, or even days, for an email response can feel slightly impersonal. B2B trading is far more complex, with a longer buying cycle and around 6-10 people involved with a single purchase. That demands real-time customer support to foster a healthy relationship. Typically, consumers will expect to wait no longer than 12 to 24 hours for an email response, but what if your buyer has found another supplier in that time?
In comes live chats and account managers to provide real-time customer support – allowing you to deal with a problem on the spot. Currently, 85% of B2B brands use live chats for sales – and it works. Plus, it’s far more personal to have a real-time conversation with someone rather than waiting hours for a response.
Top tip: Of course, there is the phone. But for those initial first steps of starting the buying cycle – live chats work just as well.
Businesses should constantly look for ways of deepening their connection with buyers to foster a long-term working relationship that’s fruitful for both parties. The psychology behind sales that brings emotion demands some form of connection to a brand.
The connection between the buyer to business is just as crucial as with B2C trading.