Buyer-driven experiences (BDXs) as self-service interactions are the requirement for B2B marketing. If the experiences you’re offering aren’t authentic — or are purely transactional — you should rethink. The statistics and mood are clear: your B2B buyers would rather drive without you for the majority of the journey.
This implies that we must not only think and act buyer-first, but we must also learn how to adopt a primarily “hands-off” approach to enable consumers to get to the point where they want us in the passenger seat to help them solve their issues.
The term “driven” is the key to BDX momentum. The purpose of driving is to go someplace, produce momentum, and progress toward your target.
Unfortunately, many of your consumers’ experiences are more analogous to taking the wrong route and coming to a dead end. They’re dull, useless, overly convoluted, overly salesy, and vendor-focused. They come to an end. With no idea what to do next (which is OK).
Rather than concentrating on bringing information in front of your purchasing audience, B2B marketers should consider what those buyers will do with that knowledge. Why your customers will be interested.
I recently sat in on a client’s marketing program planning meeting. The conversation touched on ways to broaden reach, get the display ad in front of the right people, and other tactical execution considerations.
What was absent was an explanation for why the team chose the program’s topic. What would they do with it to assist them to get closer to the desired objective of the program?
Marketers are so focused on what we want — and how to get it — that we don’t spend enough time or energy figuring out what our consumers find fascinating. We don’t consider the tale we’re conveying more than a touch or two at a time. We spend far too much time worrying about structure and our call to action (CTA).
This is one of the main reasons why purchasers find vendor-created experiences so forgettable. According to Gartner research, just 14% of purchasers changed their behavior following a recent digital engagement with a brand.
The group I was in was still debating the length of a video to show, when to show it (before or after the ebook, or as a follow-up to the webinar), and where to show it. There was no discussion about the content in the video, why the roles involved would care, or what they would benefit from it to assist them to generate momentum. Most importantly, the team saw the film as a transactional event rather than a chapter in the program’s tale that would be shared to generate momentum toward the objective.
Buyer-Driven Experiences Must Create Flow
BDXs must be completed fast, professionally, and with the purpose of marketers who are already overburdened with To-Do lists that keep growing. Consider creating meaningful experiences in connection to the notion of Flow to alleviate stress.
The dictionary defines flow as a verb that means to move or to be in a stream. But consider the notion of Flow, which was conceived by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in 1975.
Csikszentmihalyi was intrigued by discovering what factors led to a life worth living. He discovered that true pleasure might be found during a state of awareness known as Flow. You’ve probably had the experience of “being in the zone.” That is the most basic explanation for the notion of Flow.
Consider Flow to be the sensation of total immersion and energetic attention in an activity that provides you with a high degree of satisfaction and contentment. You’re so engrossed that you lose track of time, and your internal voice isn’t nagging you to multitask.
When you experience Flow at work, you gain focus, which improves your performance and productivity. You understand how I feel. It occurs when you finish a job effectively and without wasting time or effort. There is no friction, and everything works as it should.
Your buyers work throughout the day. Their objective in addressing an issue is to use the least amount of time, energy, and effort to complete the task. This implies that the more focused and beneficial the experiences we give that minimize friction by putting them in charge and matching their context, the more likely we are to assist them in “getting in the zone” of addressing their issue.
Momentum is created by Flow
Movement and change are inextricably linked. As a result, momentum is required to assist purchasers in developing a readiness to change/buy. If buyer-driven experiences can replace superficial interest with Flow, you’ll create the momentum that propels consumers forward… and will continue to do so with your assistance.
Momentum happens when your customer acquired something fresh and beneficial throughout their interaction with you. They didn’t have to doubt its “reality” since you backed up your claims with statistics and demonstrated the usefulness of everything you taught them.
Your plot and content help connect the dots, but when you also include the five aspects that improve the experience, consumers don’t hesitate to consider if it’s worth their time to continue. The inherent simplicity and relevancy aid in their decision to continue participating.
Many marketers bemoan the difficulties of capturing the attention of their consumers. However, to build momentum, you must hold their attention. Their assessment of the quality of the experience you deliver is important. Flow may be beneficial.
Consider the following when creating buyer-driven experiences that promote flow:
- What does your consumer desire, given their current situation?
- Given their position and viewpoint, which emotions arise about the topic?
- What can they do with what they learn from your interaction?
- How can you link them to the next item they need to learn to progress?
- All of these elements, and more, contribute to the formation of momentum. We must stop focusing on one transaction at a time. That approach unintentionally leads to delays that we — and our customers — do not need.
A transaction is a brief interaction that is soon forgotten. Your customers will remember an encounter for the way it made them feel. The recollection of their interactions with you helps your customers think of you first as they go through the purchase process, rather than the transactions.
The momentum that naturally results from thinking about — and producing — the “whole” of a buyer-driven experience leads to a tangible influence on pipeline velocity.