Incentives are imperative to promote loyalty, foster growth, and nurture relationships in B2B marketing. B2B thrives off retention given long sales cycles and high acquisition costs. B2B customers look for channel partners who know their industry needs and can provide value. The goal for a B2B partnership is the exchange of value and, ultimately, growth. Acting as a mentor, thought leader, and guide will foster a more lucrative and sustainable relationship.
B2B customers who report their channel suppliers as trusted produce 1.5x greater revenue, are 2.5x more likely to repurchase, and are 3.6x more likely to recommend their products or services. However, only about half of B2B customers trust their sales, account, and supplier channels. According to Gallup, about 71% of B2B customers are at risk of taking their business elsewhere.
Know the customer
Partner channel incentives are implemented to change and drive behavior. But you can’t change behavior without knowing the customer. While existing clients may appear loyal, a competitor may provide them with a more engaging experience and compromise the relationship. How do they interact with information? What information do they seek out? What values do they seek in a channel partner? Are they satisfied with your level of service? Products?
- One study found that 60% of B2B buyers agree that the mobile channel is critical to their work.
- Only 31% of B2B buyers believe their suppliers understand their needs.
- An Accenture survey found that 92% of executives say effective customer training secured repeat business.
- While financial incentives help in acquisition, 58% of B2B customers value support, 47% industry knowledge, and 42% strategy/consulting services in B2B suppliers.
Turn Insights into Action
Bain’s Net Promoter System encourages B2B suppliers to Identify opportunities for improvement, involve the customer in the data-gathering process, empower members of the front lines to make changes, and follow up.