B2B significantly trails B2C in articulating compelling brand values

A recent report by Temkin Group identifies leading practices that companies can use to establish client-centric relationships.

The ‘Best Practices in B2B Customer Experience’ whitepaper finds that B2B trails B2C in all four customer experience core competencies: purposeful leadership, compelling brand values, employee engagement and customer connectedness.

One of the most alarming gaps is found in developing compelling brand values where 37% of large B2C firms are rated as good or better, compared with only 24% of large B2B firms.

“Consumer companies may get the mass of media coverage when it comes to customer experience, but there’s enormous opportunity in the B2B sector,” says Aimee Lucas, customer experience analyst of Temkin Group and the report’s lead author.

The customer experience as the foundation of stronger B2B enterprise relationships is viewed as the ‘enormous opportunity’ with the research identifying B2B best practices across seven broad areas:

  • Develop closed-loop voice of the client (VoC) Programs. Having a reliable flow of customer insights across the organisation is critical to driving customer-centric actions,
  • use journey maps to better understand clients’ needs. To better understand how clients see their experiences, B2B organisations can use a tool known as customer journey mapping,
  • tap into virtual client advisory boards. Client advisory boards (CAB) and councils provide the opportunity to acquire more insight into customer needs and expectations,
  • account-level experience reporting. To acquire, retain, and grow B2B relationships, account managers need to understand what’s working and not working for each of their clients,
  • insightful business development. B2B organizations that gather and use the right customer insights during this early stage will create a differentiated experience from the start of the relationship,
  • collaborative account planning. By taking a structured and collaborative approach to developing in-depth account plans, companies can tap into their enterprise knowledge, and
  • proactive intervention and support. B2B organisations need to use customer insights and feedback from account managers to intervene in service experiences gone wrong as quickly as possible with well-defined, robust recovery procedures.