Here at Errand Pro we have isolated three B2B areas that will be crucial in 2020. In our last post, we explored the first one, B2B Web Design Trends For 2020. This third post explains how to improve your B2B image.
How to Improve Your B2B Image
We judge a book by its cover, no matter how much we deny it. The same goes for businesses.
We evaluate a business by its image. It only takes a few seconds for a buyer to form an idea of your business. Branding, reviews, negative comments, and social responsibility are only a few of the aspects that a business is judged upon.
Why Customer Reviews Matter For B2B
If you think that reviews are only useful for B2C, then you should reconsider.
A person will choose to use your services; not a business. That person will check reviews about your company and your level of service.
Think about it: it’s a person who shops for themselves, so they are used to going through reviews before buying anything for their household, be it white appliances, clothes, or supermarket groceries. Why should they do something different when it comes to purchasing something for their business?
People tend to trust reviews, be them positive or negative.
A business that has many positive reviews displays its quality and excellence through its customer satisfaction.
Similarly, a company that has collected many negative reviews is probably doing something wrong, because it’s impossible to have that many clients displeased with a business.
Moreover, people trust reviews because they are perceived as objective. A sales representative is obviously geared towards making a sale, which can make buyers hesitant about trusting your business. In the minds of people, however, reviews don’t have a hidden agenda to them: buyers are saying their honest opinion.
That is why it is useful to display your customer reviews on your website, social media, and other promotional material.
Having reviews means that your business has credibility; it also shows that it has been long enough to have acquired a reputation and a clientele. Positive reviews will improve your brand name and the value of your business.
How To Manage Your Online Presence
Anyone who is planning to do business with your company will check you online. They will type your company’s name and look for reviews, clients’ comments and any other material that testifies –or not- to your excellence and competence.
You will be surprised at how much digital talk people can find regarding a business.
There is Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. There are forums and other places where people talk about their experiences with business and buyers. There are websites dedicated to specific industries which gather business reviews. There is also Glassdoor, where a business reputation is depicted by its employees—both current and previous ones.
In a world where everything is transparent, everyone lives in glass houses.
How To Handle Negative Reviews
What happens when you get a negative review? It is often impossible to delete a negative review. Social media platforms like Facebook and other media do not allow for it. Instead, your business will need to manage negative reviews.
In the case of a negative review on social media, the best thing to do is to reply and try to understand your buyer’s dissatisfaction.
Starting an online brawl will make more buyers avoid your business. Remember: you’re not responding to convince that reviewer that you’re right. You’re responding to convince anyone reading that comment that it’s unwarranted.
Respond to a negative review by politely engaging with the buyer, trying to fix any mistakes, and make them feel less unfavorably toward your business.
Whatever you do, don’t antagonize your unhappy buyer.
Online Reputation Management For Business
One of the main 2020 trends regarding reviews is online reputation management.
Online marketers agree that the best way to negate negative reviews is to engage in content marketing that provides new, positive, and fresh material. This will outweigh the negative comments or reviews.
It is impossible to avoid reviews and comments. The best way for your business to thrive is to embrace a marketing policy that manages your online reputation effectively and creatively.
Contact your satisfied customers and ask them politely to leave a review. Even better, add a Call To Action (CTA) asking for a review on all of your marketing material. A simple message like, “If you liked our service, please leave a review. If not, please tell us and we’ll do our best to satisfy you” can do wonders for your online reputation.
How To Use Influencers for B2B
Another way to improve your company image is to use influencers. These are people with many followers. When they endorse a product or service, directly or indirectly, it can help with your brand image.
The clout of influencers is dominant in B2C. 2020 will see a spreading of influencer activity into B2B. It is a trend that is picking up and could become quite influential in the coming months or years.
The influencer in a B2B situation will need to have a close relationship with your business and clout which encompasses your profession. Ideally, they should have knowledge and experience in your industry and line of work. They might be considered as ‘gurus’ in a particular field; their influencer authority could boost your business.
So, ask B2B influencers to appeal to your potential buyers and promote your business. Although most B2B companies have admitted they have not invested in influencer marketing, it is something that they will need to look into in the near future.