The sell-side of the seller-buyer equation has been flipped upside down. Transitions to virtual selling are happening at a rapid pace. Plans for complete digital sales transformation are accelerated. Marketing is producing new forms of digital content at 5 to 10 times the volume they did pre-pandemic. All of these efforts designed to reach and gain the attention of buyers. And to affect The Buyer Mindset.
Since the pandemic began in March of 2020, we have seen the scales tipped heavily towards how to re-orient sales towards virtual selling and to create more interactive content. What is really interesting about the digital shift is the shift is reminiscent of the days when sellers did not have much understanding about buyers. And, when they did not, sales resorted to sales training, motivational programs, and sales methodologies. Marketing resorted to more brochures and direct mail. All promising that they could help you “win” big if you only followed these programs. If only you were “motivated” more.
Although the digital shift has been happening before the pandemic, the reality is that marketing and sales organizations have to be careful about falling back on old approaches and methods. And be careful about digitizing outdated means of connecting with buyers. Doing so will only automate the very seller-side behaviors buyers have come to resent.
Resentment can be an example of an attitudinal element in the makeup of a Buyer Mindset. Which, if you are not aware of it, can be a determining factor in how a buyer views an organization. In Buyer Outlook Study interviews this past year, I experienced firsthand the element of resentment towards the increase in marketing content buyers saw shortly after the start of the pandemic. Such resentment does not go away easily.
How many elements of a Buyer Mindset can exist? Plenty! If you are not aware of what they are, they can hinder your ability to get the attention of buyers as well as the ability to engage.
The result of a year-long experience with the pandemic is that the Buyer Mindset has undergone significant change and transformation. The way buyers think about their interactions, suppliers, networks, co-workers, and more has been altered drastically. This means, if you are trying to reach buyers with only a surface-level understanding of their pre-pandemic mindset, it will be extremely difficult.
Post-Pandemic Understanding A Must
Where this leaves us is with an imperative. To gain deep understanding of the new Buyer Mindset.
The Buyer Mindset can have elements of and be affected by mental models, attitudes, belief systems, norms, culture, perceptions, emotions, and other often unarticulated thoughts of the mind. In the forthcoming post-pandemic recovery, it is expected we will see new patterns of thinking by buyers. Without a doubt, affecting how buyers go about accomplishing their goals, making choices, and arriving at decisions.
Gaining a deep understanding of the Buyer Mindset is an important component of buyer insights research and developing buyer personas. As companies look ahead to a post-pandemic recovery, gaining periscope-like insights into how the mindsets of their buyers have changed is a must.
Not doing so will make getting the attention of buyers feel insurmountable.
What Marketing And Sales Leaders Can Do
In 2021 and looking ahead to 2022, organizations and their leaders should focus on improving their buyer insights capabilities. Taking a hard look at whether their insights and buyer personas are outdated. If they were in fact researched authentically and that a key outcome was a clearer picture of The Buyer Mindset. More importantly, if they offer compass-strength guidance on how to gain the attention of buyers.
Your path to post-pandemic recovery may very well depend on it.