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A new B2B approach is finding its way into the Chemical industry
B2B relations between buyers and sellers mostly function in a typical, long-term verified way in the chemical industry. This has brought many benefits, but in this fast and global world, keeping up is the most important thing. Therefore, B2B relations within the chemical industry need to be upgraded from sales transactions to customers relations.
Digitization and electronic commerce interaction will need to be richer and more oriented toward customer experience. According to surveys conducted by Accenture,* a decent number of chemical companies are already benefiting from or are starting to use digital B2B techniques. These can help to develop a more competitive environment and give companies a better chance to succeed and develop initiative approaches of their own.
It has never been easier to be an online customer. They can search for multiple products, compare them, write reviews, view video presentations about products, track them and manage their whole online order, make online refunds, etc. The chemical industry should adapt and in order to attract these “digital customers” and transform them into loyal customers.
Digitization of the B2B approach can bring several advantages:
Creating stronger and deeper customer relationships – According to Accenture,* the time that customers spend on the B2B journey is divided as follows: 40% research and find; 30% decide and quote; 5% purchase; 25% support. It can be said that 70% of time that customers spent interacting with company is aimed toward the sales department. Digitization of catalogs, brochures and customer portals is therefore very meaningful.
Broaden your customer base – The problem with the chemical industry lies in the fact that the content is not spread to a varied audience but only to a narrow, specific group. Modern techniques and digital tools make it very easy to attract different kinds of audiences. For example, creating “personas” for different kinds of customers can help form and deliver tailored content to different audiences.
Better processing of leads – Nudging the leads in the proper direction is crucial for satisfying and retaining customers. Chemical companies should use digital technologies to automatically record high-potential customers (according to downloaded bulletin, registration, subscription, etc.) and push them forward to the right sales process.
Be better than your competition – The right processing of digitization can shoot your company way beyond the others. B2B strategy will differ from company to company, from region to region. Capturing what will work for you might be difficult, but indeed crucial.
In order to be successful in implementing B2B strategies, chemical companies need to adapt to the evolving, global digital sphere and they need to look beyond their traditional goals. There is a need to create new strategies and be prepared to make and support changes.
*Source: S. Crabtree, F. Debrabander, E. Delussey, R. Holsman, 2015, The Chemicals Industry Getting Ready for Next-Generation B2B, Accenture
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