Close the gap: engaging B2B audiences in health care and finance
B2B communities provide an opportunity to connect with ‘customers’, gaining their insights and offering them a seat at the table.
At their core, people seek to be heard, seen, and understood by the brands they do business with. And whether your organisation is B2C, B2B, or somewhere in between, it is vital to remember there is a real person on the other end, and their expectations are rising. Organisations must go beyond delivering what they think their end-user needs to understanding what they value to drive long-lasting relationships. That is where online insights communities come in, bridging human insights and organisational strategy to drive impact.
B2B communities provide a unique opportunity to deeply interact and connect with these customers, not only gaining their insights and opinions, but offering them a seat at the table. Before we get into how this could come to life, let’s first explore further the unique benefits that B2B online communities bring to organisations.
More than a platform: the benefits of B2B communities
- High engagement – Because you are engaging with business stakeholders on topics that are relevant to them, community members feel invested in the insights, understand the value, and are interested in learning what others in the community have to say.
- Always-on insights – Observe real-time problem-solving among members or pivot your strategy with agility.
- Relationship building – Rather than a one-way stream of insights, B2B communities can be leveraged to connect and engage with members, building deeper connections and advocacy.
Bringing B2B to Life: some examples
Health Insurance services
A large insurer wanted to better understand the employer decision-making process in an effort to continuously improve the employer relationship while also retaining and attracting new employer groups. We set up a community with 100 decision-makers to dive into their deeper held beliefs and experiences. Over the course of the 9-month engagement, these decision-makers participated in roughly 20 activities varying from short surveys and dialogues to online discussions.
The community provided decision-makers with an opportunity to have their voices heard and network with and hear how others in similar positions were navigating the ever-changing health care landscape. The insights gleaned from this community fuelled strategy focused on nurturing and improving the employer experience.
A national mortgage company was rapidly growing – and with that evolution needed to be purposeful about their growth to ensure any product or service they offer and bring to market is helping people in life’s most important moments. To bring their clients’ perspective (i.e., real estate agents) into the decision-making, we identified the following three focus areas:
- Redefine talent needs both within and outside the organisation to amplify impact
- Establish tools and processes that enable insights to inform decisions before it’s too late
- Involve internal stakeholders to generate buy-in for future activation
By leveraging a B2B community as a research hub across many audiences, they were able to identify white space opportunity, pain points, influence product development, and pressure test messaging. In doing so, this organistion was able to bring real estate agents and other B2B stakeholders into the fold, linking their research initiatives for continuous tracking of all interactions and feedback.
Agriculture & Financial Services
A provider of financial products and services specifically tailored to U.S. farmers was putting an insights infrastructure in place to enable their strategy, innovation, products and customer experiences to be more insight-driven and customer-centric.
The brand sought to make farmers’ financial needs and experiences the foundation of their understanding, and they needed tools to help them get better, deeper and quicker insights to fuel decision-making.
We set up a community with their target farmers to gain a deeper understanding of their farmers’ lives and livelihoods and their needs related to products and services. This has enabled this company to better align their value proposition with what farmers truly need, determine which elements of the customer journey to focus resources on for improvement and find stronger points of differentiation in the marketplace.
Gaining human insights from your business stakeholders
Connecting business strategy to the voices that matter most is essential for organisations aspiring to be human-centric – B2C and B2B organizations alike. By harnessing the power of online insights communities in a B2B environment, your brand can capture the voice of stakeholders and translate those insights to drive meaningful strategy. At the end of the day, whether your audience is a consumer on the street or a business professional – their insights can and should be the north star of your organisational strategy.