3 Surefire Ways to Impress Your International Customers as a B2B Organization

May 22, 2019


BEST PRACTICES SERIES

Article ImageIf you are looking for a way to take your B2B company to the next level, chances are that international expansion has crossed your mind once or twice. Thanks to technology, it is easier than ever for organizations to reach audiences that are located far away. However, attracting and impressing a global audience is by no means an easy feat. Competition is even more fierce when you are contending on an international scale. Further, there are plenty of challenges like language barriers, time zone differences, and logistical obstacles that can make it harder to connect.

However, this does not mean that it is impossible for B2B organizations to succeed as an international business. The global B2B market has been steadily rising and it certainly opens up the door for organizations to grow and expand.

So, how can you ensure that you are able to not only connect with international customers but truly impress them by standing out from your global competition?

Let’s talk about it.

1. Provide Online Personalization

There is little doubt that personalization is one of the best strategies for connecting with customers on a one-on-one basis. Customization is no longer just considered a nice feature or added bonus, though. 64% of B2B buyers will switch to a competing brand if you do not offer personalized interactions, and three-fourths of these customers expect businesses to offer customized experiences.

Personalization does not need to be complex in order to be effective. When you are working with an international customer base, there will be plenty of demographic data that can be used to adjust your online interactions in meaningful ways. There are some obvious details that need to be adjusted - like your customers’ location and preferences. For example, based on the customer’s location, your site should automatically change the language and adjust the prices to the local currency.

Once you have these basic details down, you can start to look for other ways to customize the experience. Whether it is targeted content triggered by a person’s interactions, recommending specific products, or presenting personalized offers, it is important that you have the tools and systems in place to support personalization to a global market.

2. Adjust Your Social Marketing

Tackling social media marketing is hard enough, but taking things to a global audience is an even greater challenge. What may work well with your local customers might not resonate well with international ones.

Smart Insights conducted research about global social media trends. While Facebook is certainly the most popular platform worldwide, it is important to note the popularity of other networks like Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat. Some countries even have their own social networking sites that are specific to their region, such as South Korea’s Naver and China’s WeChat.

Based on your industry, be sure that you are prioritizing the major social sites. If you are a visual-oriented business, you need to be actively working to gain international Instagram followers, for example. If part of your strategy is focused on expert level content, you may want to focus more on sites like LinkedIn or Twitter - which tend to attract more professional users.

3. Try out H2H

While you may not be familiar with the term, human-to-human (H2H) marketing simply means that you are creating a brand that is truly personable. When you are dealing with customers that are located far away, it can be difficult to make a real connection with them. Obviously, you cannot visit them in person, and it may be very difficult to schedule phone calls due to time zone differences. However, making human connections is just as important (if not more so) when you are dealing with a global audience.

Establishing connections with customers is extremely important for several reasons. Research from Motista concluded that when customers felt emotionally connected to a business, they spent 2.5 times more per purchase. Further, they were more loyal to that brand, had a higher lifetime value, and were more likely to recommend the business to others.

So how can international B2B organizations build these connections? Humanizing your brand by making it more relatable and engaging is the answer. Focus on making your brand transparent and genuine by sharing real stories from other customers or giving a behind-the-scenes look into what your company does.

Try to find ways to connect with customers on an individual basis as much as possible. For instance, you can offer a live chat service on your website that shows the real name and face of the representative they are talking with. Or, utilize a connected CRM system so that each customer has an individual account that captures important information from past interactions.

It is also important to use your business content strategically to build these connections. B2B buyers prefer different kinds of content depending on how far along they are in the buying process. For instance, early-stage customers prefer content that is easily consumed, like infographics and podcasts.

Later stage buyers will want more detailed and thorough information from case studies and analytical reports.

Keep this in mind and look for ways to offer the types of content that your customers are looking for, no matter where they stand in the buyer’s journey. This will establish a more trusting relationship that will influence their loyalty.

Conclusion

Expanding your audience reach into global markets can do wonders for your business. However, it is extremely important that you are able to connect just as well with your international customers - even though they are far away.

Look for ways to personalize interactions. Pay close attention to social media trends in your various markets and humanize your brand as much as possible to cultivate real relationships. This is what will truly impress them, and ultimately, foster more conversions.


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