B2B Technology Buying Roles By Generation and Buying Cycle

How do B2B Tech Buyers Decide What to Purchase?

By the end of the year, Millennials are set to overtake Baby Boomers as the largest living generation in the U.S. And by 2017, their spending power is expected to overtake that of Gen X and Baby Boomers. No longer the annoying younger brother, Millennials are growing in power and voice in the workplace. With this in mind, our team did a little digging for existing research on this growing segment.

We looked around to see if anyone had studied how Millennials impact B2B enterprise tech purchasing and found a few interesting reports. A 2014 thinkwithgoogle survey found nearly half of B2B researchers are millennials, up 70 percent from 2012.

Earlier this year, we also shared interesting findings about Millennials from MarketingSherpa in a quick blog post on “Marketing to Millennials” and were struck by the stark contrast in behavior between millennials (typically age 15-35) and baby boomers (typically age 51-69).

Reseach Premise

Then we found IBM’s To buy or not to buy? research which concluded, “Millennials are having a profound impact on their organizations and the B2B vendors who want to do business with them. As more millennials move into decision making roles at work, or start their own companies where they are in charge the influence they wield over B2B purchasing will only continue to grow.”

We completely agreed with IBM, but wanted to know more. Specifically, we wanted to know how millennials were impacting true B2B technology purchases. Not just for a new office device or service, but big ticket enterprise technology that cost a business $10,000 or more.

BtoB Tech Purchases by Generations

So we conducted our own generational research and published our survey findings in, “Not Your Father’s Buying Decision: How Three Generations of B2B Technology Buyers Decide What to Purchase.”

Looking to get a better understanding of the generational differences, we asked three generations of B2B buyers – Baby Boomers, Gen X and Millennials – about their role in the technology buying process within their organization.

Contrary to conventional wisdom about influences and influencers in the B2B and technology buying cycle, some of the responses may surprise you.

For an overview of the key findings, check out the full press release, Millennials’ Enterprise Technology Buying Power Trumps Baby Boomers and Gen Xers According to Survey.

BizWireTV also featured our news in their Weekly segment, Quick Biz Hits. Check it out below!

Have you noticed any trends or differences in how each generation moves through the B2B buying cycle? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Drop us a line or leave a comment below.

By Mary Rose Macaranas – June 9, 2016

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Posted in : Thought Leadership

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