Scientific Research: Motivating B2B Buyer Behavior

Research shows that motivating behavior is contingent upon many factors, but let’’s examine six in particular: attention, relevance, confidence, achievement, social motivation and immersion. Usually I treat these as separate concepts in my blog posts, but today I’’d like to show how all six can work together to further motivate buyer behavior.

b2b buyer's journeyAttention: Gaining the attention of your B2B audience can be the most difficult. Thanks to the continued partial attention we all have due to the growing prevalence of tablets and smartphones, breaking through the clutter is harder than ever. Design and messaging are integral,— and the next two factors should be included in both to improve your campaign’s efficacy.

Relevance: Researchers have found that people will cognitively elaborate on what you’’re saying if it’’s personally relevant. So make your creative and messaging relevant to them. Use images they relate to, or that that depict situations they would be in. Include issues in your messaging that relate to how they feel, what they need, obstacles they may meet etc.

Confidence: Make them think they can do it. While researching your target audience, ask them why they haven’’t switched providers in the past. Don’’t assume it’’s about money. Though it may be, what other reasons are there? Past problems with reliability? Afraid to make a change due to the very nature of B2B sales?

And finally,— remember to test these things! One design may be better than the next, and one form of wording may work better than another (and, unless you have a highly technical/intelligent audience, remember to aim for a fifth- to eighth-grade reading level). Research can only take you so far: You have to test yourself to see what works best in motivating your target audience’s buyer behavior.

motivating buyer behaviorAchievement: A sense of achievement may be a strong motivator in keeping your online relationships strong. Do you have competitions? Do your buyers have a chance to “advance” in any way? If so, test and see which works best. If not, perhaps there are ways to add the concept of achievement to your online outreach.

Social Motivation: Our online world is a reflection of our offline world. And offline, we are social beings motivated by social interactions, helping others, and sense of community. If you aren’’t including these, develop ways that incorporate the social aspect of humanity into your outreach.

Immersion: People who are motivated by immersion like to submerge themselves in the social arena and escape from the world. What ways can you help them achieve this? Can you develop ways for them to discover new things and “get lost” in the relationship? All our behaviors are motivated by different factors.

These are just a few ways that you can motivate your b2b buyers to take action. Want more insights into how you can influence people’s decision making? Check out this post: The Science of Persuasion in B2B Marketing.