Buyer Personalization Will Matter As The Balance Of Power Shifts To Buyers In A “New World Order” Of Buying
In 1990, at the end of the Cold War, both President George H.W. Bush and President Mikhail Gorbachev used the term “new world order” to describe the change in the relationship between the two superpowers. Defining a new spirit of cooperation and a new form of leadership in the world. Brought on by the dramatic and monumental shift in the human desire to end the Cold War between Russia and the United States.
Similarly, on a global macro level, the pandemic will bring about another era of a “new world order” that we cannot fully anticipate yet. In the world of business and commerce, we are seeing the beginnings of a “new world order” that will fully realize in 3-5 years. Evidence is there. New technologies accelerating a change in how sellers interact with buyers. Buyers shifting to digital self-serve preferences will grow. AI (artificial intelligence) will provide buyers with what they seek more frequently. A next-generation of buyers will mature who know nothing about a world before digital.
In the world of business, commerce, B2B marketing, and B2B sales, a “new world order” will emerge. The balance of power and cooperation will dramatically continue its march towards the buyer.
One capability B2B marketing and sales will need to strengthen is that of personalization. With the balance of power shifting towards the buyer, even more, the degree to which you can connect with buyers on a personalized level will become a difference-maker. McKinsey predicted even before the pandemic that “personalization will be the prime driver of marketing success within five years.” This will put added pressure on marketing and sales professionals to truly understand their buyers. In such a way, that they can make 1:1 marketing and sales a reality in each and every buyer interaction.
There are 5 proven ways you can supercharge your personalization efforts to meet the new world order in B2B marketing and sales:
1 – Gain New Buyer Insights Into Change Itself
The pandemic is creating a “new world order” in how buying processes are governed, how buyers source, how buyer research, and the list can go on and on. If you are not keeping abreast of these changes, not only will you have trouble with personalization but buyers will see you as not of their world. A good reason your content marketing may fall on deaf ears.
2 – Refresh and Update Your Buyer Personas – Or – Just Throw The Bad Ones Away
Buyer personas, when researched qualitatively, can help you to make personalization matter. The problem you have to look out for is that many buyer personas efforts are in effect buyer profiling exercises done without an eye towards personalization. Consisting of generic forms of background information passed off as a way to personalize. If your buyer personas can be characterized as simply profile briefs, it is time to literally throw them away and begin anew.
3 – Understand Your Buyers’ Mindset
Your marketing and sales teams will need to have the capability to think like a buyer. To do so will require they first know how buyers think. This is where buyer persona insights research can be of help. Ascertaining key mental models, perceptions, attitudes, and beliefs affecting how buyers respond to target content or their receptivity to engage in a sales conversation becomes a must-do priority.
4 – Go Beyond The Buyer’s Journey Thinking
B2B marketing and sales will need to go beyond conventional buyer’s journey thinking. Why? Because buyers are already doing so. One thing I am paying attention to is how buyers are conducting themselves, commercially, in the “new world order” of buying. It is changing and soon the neat little boxes of the buyer’s journey may just not be enough to help you with hyper-personalization but also to know what actually is going on. For content to resonate and sales to make sense during buyer conversation, you will need to know a lot more about the “new world order” of buying processes.
5 – Think About Buyer Interaction Design
What will fast emerge in the next 3-5 years is the realization that marketing and sales have a design issue. That is a buyer interaction design (BxD) issue. Personalization is as much about designing personalized interactions with buyers and customers. And designing personalization tools that can be used by marketing and sales.
A “new world order” future in business, commerce, and buying will soon be upon us. Impacting your ability to differentiate through personalization. One way to ensure your personalization efforts are buyer-aligned is to gather critical insights about your buyer personas.