The business to business (B2B) sector market, just like every other data-driven market, benefits hugely from using loyalty software. B2B loyalty looks a little different to the loyalty structures that consumers are used to but they employ all of the same principles.
B2B retailing consists of supplying product to retail stores, but customer retention is just as important when it comes to businesses. Using loyalty software allows companies to accurately understand, and anticipate, the wants and needs of the companies they do business with.
This leads to more effective interactions for everyone involved in the process. B2B structures should turn to the more conventional business to consumer (B2C) model of loyalty to understand what is needed to have a successful loyalty program, and how to use the data effectively.
Everyone seems to know that B2B e-commerce is set for explosive growth in the years to come. Part of this is the drive to move B2B transactions to be online – saving money for all parties. Customer loyalty is much easier to handle online. Businesses can account for more accurate tracking of purchasing habits and spending patterns.
The B2B sector needs to start thinking like a consumer-driven market, we all know why we repeat custom in other businesses. B2B commerce is driven by cost and efficiency; is a business can log into their account and hit ‘repeat purchase’ to refill their past orders, you’re doing a good job.
B2B Loyalty programs, just like B2C loyalty programs need to be easy to interact with while providing for the wants of businesses. There are many ways to retain your B2B customer base but investing in the data-driven marketing that comes from customer loyalty programs is a no-brainer.
Having up-to-date information about who is buying what from you, for what reason, and how frequently allows you to know a myriad of things about your own business; when you need to make your purchases, what types of products are underperforming and why etc.
Frequently the problem with the B2B sector is that there is a focus on attracting new customer but it is cheaper to retain a customer than to attract a new one. All of the information gathered as a result of loyalty programs leads to the efficient running of a business.
Chris Lynch, senior director of product marketing at Oracle Marketing Cloud says
the problem is that once a new customer is attained, businesses can lose their interest through a drop-off of engagement.
Data-driven marketing makes sure that every customer feels like your business has what they need. From the perspective of a customer, all interaction is engagement. Reaching out to customers doesn’t have to be a complicated or costly process.
Customers should feel like they can engage with your business beyond buying once off products; the goal is to hold their interest through personalised offers. This results in higher customer retention rates as well as more frequent business. There is no doubt that loyalty programs make the B2B sector a smarter place to do business.
There are a lot of missed opportunities in the B2B sector market when it comes to loyalty. Business owners need to start thinking more innovatively if they are to compete with their competitive counterparts. Customers, including other businesses, have never had more options, which means your business needs to stand out and stay relevant.
In this day and age, that means personalised, data-driven marketing, using information on offer from loyalty programs. Customers want the best deals for their company; they want to feel like they have a special connection to your business. It is about striking a balance between satisfying the consumer and keeping your business on track.