As emerging technologies continue to pervade virtually every facet of business, technology buyers are becoming more aware and enlightened. A new report from LinkedIn has argued that marketers can be the key to driving customer decisions across the buying process.
The report, titled ‘The Enlightened Tech Buyer: Powering Customer Decisions from Acquisition to Renewal’, polled more than 5,000 global technology decision makers across hardware and software for end users and data centres.
Looking at the overall focus, four in five (79%) of today’s employees are technology end users, with two in five (38%) technology decision makers. The report argues that more people are involved in the tech buying process, yet the purchase timeline is going down. 86% of employees polled said they contribute to new business technology investment decisions within their organisations – yet tech hardware purchase processes take just 15 months on average.
This means marketers have less time to influence the buying process. LinkedIn subsequently put together a four-step checklist for marketers in order to deliver the best available solutions to various stakeholders:
- Know your buying audience – in other words, the key stakeholders who contribute to and shape technology investment decisions
- Understand today’s buyer requires intelligent messaging, brand campaigns, and thought leadership
- Go outside your core buying audience to educate and influence others who may influence buyer decisions
- Engage and communicate in ‘enlightened buyer’ communities, such as online forums and social groups
Ultimately, the challenge for marketers is getting greater with each passing moment. Buyers are ‘digitally enabled’ and ‘focused on outcomes’ as the research puts it; in other words, if they don’t like what they’re seeing from your offering, they will change swiftly.
“With global investments in new business technology expected to increase upwards of 9% in 2019, according to Forrester, today’s technology marketers should be ready for a challenge,” wrote Meghan Brockmeyer, senior manager of technology vertical marketing at LinkedIn in a blog post. “In order to truly be successful, marketers must be able to fully connect with potential (and existing) customers and deliver the solutions, support, experience and messages they are looking for.”
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