I have good news and bad news for you. The good news is your customers are already more than halfway through your buying cycle. The bad news is they haven’t heard a peep from anyone associated with your brand yet.
Once known best as the title of the iconic Arthur Miller play, the phrase “death of a salesman” has lately become an all-too-realistic fear in this age of the digital sales cycle. The digital evolution started in the late 1990s, when buyers began to change the way they vetted their vendors and procured their products by researching on their own online. Today, the average consumer gets more than 57 percent of the way through the sales cycle before engaging with anyone associated with the brand, according to research from Google and CEB titled “The Digital Evolution in B2B Marketing.”
This means buyers are out surfing information found online rather than interacting with the brand itself to make valuable buying decisions. By the time most salespeople enter the cycle, most of the decision has already been made. This will continue to trend in the buyer’s direction, especially as younger millennials enter the workforce and demand instant access to any relevant data. This may sound defeating, but I think it’s a great opportunity for brands to establish themselves as a thought leader online and engage with customers in a new and creative way. With the right brand messaging, businesses can actually reward the buyer’s search for content that is relevant, valuable, educational, trusted, transparent, and authentic.
I think the best way to show the impact this new customer journey is having on the buying cycle is to break it down by the numbers. Check out the infographic below or contact us today so we can start developing an innovative strategy for inserting your voice back into the buying cycle.