Blog post By Paula Chiocchi on 2022-08-31
The times are changing, and so are B2B buyers.
I came across a recent Future of Marketing study from the American Marketing Association-New York (shared via @MediaPost) that highlights big changes in B2B buyers, from demographics to how they’re making decisions.
According to the study, both younger buyers and female buyers are on the rise in B2B markets. The findings also revealed that 48% of these new B2B buyers are more likely to buy from companies that demonstrate social purpose or social responsibility -- compared with only 29% of consumer buyers.
It’s clear to me that B2B marketers who want to keep driving their businesses forward need to understand what these changes mean and plan accordingly. Here are three of my top takeaways around these current shifts.
A new generation of buyers.
As more Gen Z and Millennial professionals move into decision-making roles, marketers need to adjust their approach and tactics. Most buyers today are different from their Gen X and Baby Boomer predecessors. “Professional” doesn’t mean “ultra-formal” to these generations. They’re known for valuing honesty and, in particular, Gen Z prefers frank, open communication—no cap. In fact, Millennials and Gen Z are both characterized as being suspicious of marketing messages and are turned off by overly promotional marketing or aggressive sales tactics.
Marketing content to these groups can take a more casual approach, focusing on authentic relationship building. Younger generations also tend to engage later in the buying process, so marketers should provide valuable, helpful content that will enable buyers to engage on their own terms.
The future is female.
While the average buyer is still male, when it comes to younger B2B purchasers, the study found that “women make up 53% of the under-30s group and most of the under-25 group.” And those figures are expected to increase. The findings revealed that men are responsible for more than 75% of business purchases of $100,000 and above, but it predicts that women will make up the majority of buyers in 10 years. What does this mean? Inclusivity is imperative. This applies to design, content and the channels on which you’re targeting contacts.
Today’s B2B buyers want to work with companies that align with their values.
B2B buyers today care about a lot more than just cost. They’re concerned about the types of companies with which they do business. Younger generations care deeply about injustice and social responsibility. The study called these buyers “woke,” and whether you agree with that term or not, the reality is that today’s B2B decision-makers are committed to alignment between their values and those of their employer and vendors. In fact, the study indicates that 38% of buyers would pay an additional 10% or more, including on major purchases of more than $100,000. Companies that have like-minded values, make those values known, and most importantly, consistently act on their values, will be preferable.
Understanding who your buyer is and what is important to them can aid in personalization, segmentation, channel outreach, and more. Ultimately, it enables you to alter your overall campaign strategy to be more effective.
At OMI, building audiences that map to our clients’ ideal B2B buyers is our passion. Please reach out to us to find out how we can assist you in understanding your buyers and how to best reach them.
Over 75 million of OMI’s 80 million manager-level and above contacts are matched to the LiveRamp RampID graph, including 65 million records from our SMB and medical market databases. Contact us today to learn more about building a custom audience.
What is the source of this quote?
If it is reference above with MediaPost, I’m not sure about grammar rules for citation.
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