Mens outfitter (and Salesforce customer) Trunk Club stole the show at last week’s Customer Company Tour event when they demonstrated their impressive use of social and mobile to connect with customers. But if you were sitting there thinking, “this is interesting but, as a B2B company, it doesn’t really apply to me,” think again.
The fact is, highly personalized sales experiences like the one described below are blurring the lines between B2B and B2C marketing. After all, we’re all selling to the same people, and if these people are receiving highly targeted messages in one area of their lives, it’s going to raise their expectations across the board.
So let’s take a look at a few of the lessons from the video below, and how they apply to B2B.
“You need to be able to pick up that conversation, that relationship, right where you left off.”
This is, if anything, even more applicable to B2B companies. With longer sales cycles, there can be weeks or months between interactions with a customer—if you’re having to start back at at square one every time you speak with them, it’s going to be more than a little frustrating (for both of you). Having all the data you need (email records, site activities, etc.) at your fingertips keeps the relationship-building process on track and prospects moving through the funnel.
“The experience for a customer has to be cohesive…sales, marketing, & customer service all have to be talking to each other.”
Internal alignment matters. If all of your departments aren’t on the same page, it’s going to be reflected in the customer’s experience. Communicate internally, and align your goals and messaging.
“Make your sales team bionic.”
Your sales reps are likely working with a large volume of prospects at any given time — creating a truly personalized experience for each and every prospect just isn’t a reality without leveraging technology. Give your sales reps the tools they need to make this personalized sales experience scaleable.
“The customer dictates how he wants to engage. You have to be able to cover every one of those channels.”
It’s not just about phone calls and emails anymore—your customers are interacting with brands across multiple social channels. If you’re not maintaining a presence on these channels but your competitors are, you’re putting yourself at a serious disadvantage.
“The ability to interact real-time is the necessity of mobile in our business.”
Two big things for B2B and B2C alike: real-time and mobile. Everyone’s busy—if you have the ability to see when a customer is active on your site and reach out while you’re still top-of-mind, that’s a really powerful thing. And, in a world with nearly five billion smartphones, if you’re not figuring out how you can incorporate mobile into your marketing efforts, you’re going to fall behind.
One last thought to leave you with: one of the greatest successes of Trunk Club is that they aren’t just selling clothes; they’re selling convenience, and they’re selling a vision. Your marketing messages should do the same. In a customer-centric business world, your messaging shouldn’t be focused on what you do, it should be focused on painting an image for the customer of what their life would look like with your product or service.
What else can B2B marketers learn from Trunk Club? We’d love to hear from you in our comments section!