One of the most important strategic projects of 2016 at DT digital and innovation department was the definition of a business customer segmentation for the digital age. I conducted the primary research and ended up with an innovative taxonomy of drivers for the digitization of industry and service economy.
For B2B, there are two main components: individuals and organizations. In short, since the complexity of B2B is higher than B2C, and there are more influential components, a systematic perspective regarding all of these components is necessary for the success of B2B. The customer population size is smaller in B2B. However, we do not face a single buyer, customer, and user.
For B2B personas, we need to investigate various individual and organizational components, such as firmographics of the business, organizational model and goals, IT culture, infrastructure and process, business roles and responsibilities, priority, initiative and success factors, shopping processes, decision-making processes, triggers, demographics of decision-maker, contract administrators, people with major problems, contributors, influential individuals, stakeholders, direct users, etc.
Common challenges for a B2B are highly filtered limited access to real customers, priorities that are based not on real users but on many influential stakeholders, conflicts of interest for a consistent product, unreliable client data, and change of roles for the customers. To overcome these challenges, higher-quality inputs, the definition of the success metrics, in-depth interviews, systematic consideration of roles and involved parties, as well as uncovering buying motives, are required. Data analysis, sales calls, interviews, surveys, firmographics, order histories, transactions, behavior, attitudes, opinions, needs, and perceptions are all valuable inputs for developing business personas.