What Tech Buyers Value Most During Vendor Engagement
By: IDG | 09/01/2021
Your new product is creating some buzz. Maybe your company is receiving rave reviews for tech innovation. Maybe it’s outperforming rival products. Or maybe you’re watching market demand rise almost overnight.
Whatever your case may be, fulfilling the potential behind any promising product starts with customer engagement. That means developing a deeper understanding of your customer at hand. In this case, knowing how IT decision-makers (ITDMs) learn about your product, what kind of content value they actively seek throughout the tech purchase process, and how you can better influence the buying decision.
With this knowledge at hand, vendors can begin leveraging customer engagement into meaningful, long-term business.
Vendor Engagement Relies on Respect
Nothing loses prospects faster than bad manners. In the 2021 IDG Customer Engagement research, 56% of ITDMs say that “aggressive/persistent sales follow-up” causes them to abandon a vendor when doing research during the purchase process. Thus, further bringing into question the specific role tech vendors need to serve. In fact, 45% of tech buyers cited a vendor that came off “too promotional & self-serving” as another reason to abandon a vendor. Hence, the lesson here – treating your customers with respect is a principle that keeps business in the door.
Less Sales, More Value
Turning selling into sharing is at the heart of what prospects want. And when done right—you plant seeds that grow into more sustainable, customer-centric marketing. Per IDG’s 2021 Customer Engagement research: 56% of ITDMs responded to outreach that “shared valuable content or information”. Additionally, it’s important for tech vendors to be knowledgeable about specific business challenges and also demonstrate honesty/transparency. Ultimately, technology decision-makers want to be respected by vendors and feel like they are actually gaining value throughout the purchase process.
Introducing New Products & Services
When marketing a new technology product or service, the stakes are always high. If a strategy is carefully crafted with the right content, engagement is in reach; however, there are different factors to consider for emerging versus well-established vendors. To illustrate – 51% ITDMs say that emerging vendors must provide case studies/proof of concept, followed by evidence that shows the new product/service stands out from the competition. For well-established vendors, the criteria are much different. ITDMs look for detailed product information (69%) followed by reassurance that the new product easily integrates with existing technology. While emerging vendors must prove their capabilities, well-established vendors have already done their legwork throughout the years and really do not need to prove the success of their products.
Success regarding customer engagement boils down to self-awareness in the outreach process. This is self-awareness that requires knowing not only what ITDMs are seeking on a product level, but understanding their challenges, concerns, and even their likes and dislikes within the engagement experience itself. With this kind of awareness, technology vendors and marketers can start turning customer engagement into meaningful, long-term business. Download the full report for a deeper understanding.