B2B marketing professionals have more work to do than B2C marketers to assure customers the lengthy purchase path is worth embarking on. One of the best ways to accomplish this is to leverage customer reviews.
Customer reviews can be influential because you get feedback straight from your customers’ mouths. You can also use their feedback to enhance future customers’ journeys, which leads to better experiences that inspire purchases and long-term loyalty.
The Value of Customer Reviews for B2B Businesses
Recent research from Gartner revealed that B2B customers spend 27% of their time doing independent online research when they’re considering a purchase. This is the most amount of time they spend on any activity involved in buying decisions.
Potential buyers delve into the entirety of a business’s online presence, such as their social media profiles and website. Customer reviews are also an integral part of this online research. Real client feedback is a source of truth for what’s working and what isn’t. And because it’s genuine, it’s more trustworthy and influential.
Although not as common as consumer reviews, feedback from businesses and the decision-makers involved in a B2B purchase is available to study, so long as you solicit it effectively.
Improve Your Brand Image
When customers leave a positive review about their experience it helps show potential clients all the good you can do for their business, improving your brand’s reputation and image.
Real accounts of client experiences also help to humanize your brand. Potential customers can get a feel for your business’s personality and purpose when real clients share stories that others can relate to and connect with emotionally.
Ultimately, reviews have a hand in establishing a positive reputation and image for your brand.
Influence Purchasing Decisions
In a 2021 Statista survey, 68% of respondents reported that feeling listened to was one of the most important factors in a B2B purchasing decision.
One of the best ways you can ensure customers follow through on this decision and feel appreciated is through customer reviews. Clients can tell you how your product or service did or didn’t solve their problem. They can also share what they did with your product or service.
This kind of feedback from customers can influence purchasing decisions of those at the beginning of their journey to find a solution to their pain point or on the cusp of making a final choice.
Understand Customer Experiences Better
Your main goal in soliciting customer feedback is to understand customer experiences better. When you find out what is working, you can optimize the processes, services, or products to ensure they continue to work for your customers.
On the other hand, when you find what isn’t working, you can fix it. Customers provide valuable insights into what they don’t like and are usually more than willing to tell you how to make it better.
Armed with this information, you can continuously improve the customer journey to ensure the overall customer experience is a satisfactory one.
Leveraging Customer Feedback
Leveraging customer feedback provides significant benefits for your business. Improving your brand’s image, convincing potential customers to become actual customers, and better understanding customer experiences make it worth the effort to solicit genuine feedback from clients.
But how exactly do you gather authentic client reviews and leverage them to improve your products, services, and overall customer journey?
Have a Simple Process for Collecting Reviews
Even if you don’t offer an incentive for leaving a review, if the process is simple enough and the experience was good enough, clients will be more likely to leave one.
Collecting reviews starts with effectively communicating with customers. Make a personal connection with each of your clients by actively listening to their needs and desires. Also, be consistent, timely, and reliable when you communicate with your customers.
Effective communication leads to trust. When clients trust you, your relationship with them solidifies, leading to a purchase that you can then ask for a review on.
Feel free to ask your clients personally for honest feedback about their experience. They can submit it to you via email or discuss it with you over the phone. For those clients, you don’t get a chance to ask personally, keep the process simple.
The form to fill out should ask for no more than their name, email, what they purchased, and their feedback. Send the link to it a few days after a client receives their product or service. Continuously share the link in the bio of your social media profiles and remind customers on your email list about leaving a review.
Bring Your Team Together to Review Them
There’s no point in collecting reviews if you have no intentions of reviewing them. Of course, managers should spend time analyzing reviews on their own. But it’s just as important to bring departments together to study reviews.
As mentioned above, B2B clients typically have a longer path to purchase. That also means more touchpoints and interactions with various departments or people across their customer journey.
By bringing everyone together to review customer feedback, each team can better understand how they impact the customer journey and how everyone’s roles weave together to create the customer experience.
Schedule a meeting for the entire organization to get together at least once a month to review customer reviews and brainstorm ways to implement the feedback you get.
Customer feedback may require extra effort to collect and analyze. But you can’t elevate the customer journey and experience without it.