Human factor plays an extremely important role in marketing. Whether an organization engages in the business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) marketplace, marketers have to deal with people and as such they have to be able to recognize the features that can drive the organization to profitable operations. The rationale behind effective decision making in the B2B marketing is not only to identify the proper organization to do business with, but most importantly, identifying the right person in the organization to connect and exchange knowledge in the aim of offering superior customer service. Therefore, effective decision making in the B2B context is based more on emotion and less on common sense.
The Changing Role of B2B Marketing
As the business environment becomes more competitive, organizations spend substantial amount of time and money on tracking their leads in social networks. In their effort to make their sales cycles shorter and their profit margins larger, B2B marketers get involved in socializing media paying attention to their clients’ reactions and trying to “humanize” interaction.
Many organizations have embraced social media as a way to proactively broadcast their activities, events and announcements to their clients. Considering the effective implementation of SEO strategies and the benefits derived from B2B interaction in social networking platforms, it comes as no surprise that many organizations have LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook accounts, but also a WordPress blog and/or a YouTube channel. Particularly in the B2B marketplace, organizations need to cooperate closely in order to meet their customers’ needs and overcome the shrinking market shares and the highly concentrated markets. Given the new market realities, social networking can build sales momentum.
The Role of Human Factor in the B2B Marketing
To influence purchase decision making, organizations need to realize that engaging in social networking is the same as engaging in any type of relationship. It requires good chemistry and honest behavior.
Listening to customer requests and being responsive through effective organizational transformation requires constant adaptation to community building, and organizational alignment to build strategic consensus. Alignment does not depend only on effective social media strategy. It mostly depends on an integrated B2B marketing strategy that allows for the socialization of the business processes to the extent that they ensure a successful positioning of the organization within the evolving marketplace.
Human factor is very important during the entire process of organizational transformation. In order for a team to collaborate effectively externally, it should primarily foster collaboration within. For this to be achieved, it is very important that cooperative exchange of knowledge occurs first on an interdepartmental level and then on an inter-organizational level. This ensures sincere engagement, not only between the collaborative organizations, but also between the organizations and their customers.
Besides, effective organizational transformation requires restructuring, which means collaboration of the people who work in an organization. Embracing social media requires the existence of an integrated and interconnected network of people who represent the organization and come in contact with other organizations (B2B) or customers (B2C). To ensure that the entire organization is responsive to the external activity required by socialization, it is essential that people cooperate constructively and are responsive to organizational transformation. In other words, it is imperative that the management acknowledges the importance of human factor to ensure successful commitment.
In conclusion, although there is great potential in social media for the B2B marketers, the full benefits are not yet realized. Traditionally, B2B companies are not strong in their marketing strategies, but given the changing market realities, it becomes imperative that they embrace social media. Moreover, the role of human factor in this ongoing process is extremely important given that, without the collaboration of people, effective organizational transformation cannot exist. Therefore, organizations that want to achieve improved market shares and higher stakes need to strengthen their marketing efforts, directing them to the latest trend of integrating social media in their B2B strategy, while promoting the importance of human element.