Tech Heads: researching B2B tech

The first stage of the B2B tech buying journey is the identification of the need for a certain type of product. This is where both knowledge of the industry and research come into play. While decision-makers in IT genuinely enjoy keeping up with new tech, others, notably HR, marketing and operations, find it more of a chore.

Our 2019 Tech Heads report: Clash of the Tech Heads looks at the different buying personas that make up the B2B tech buying committee. We surveyed 600 professionals responsible for IT-related purchases at businesses in the UK and the US to find out how best to communicate with each persona.  

We found that, though 52% of buying is in response to a specific need and solution actively sought, 45% of purchases are an upgrade or enhancement to an existing product. Only 3% of purchases happen as a result of noticing a product when not actively looking.

fun fact:
38% of IT professionals enjoy researching tech products more than researching holidays!

While many tech buyers resort to online searches, our research showed that Google is not held in particularly high regard. And social media has low credibility as a source of information about new suppliers and products.

Only half of tech buyers use Google to learn about new tech products and suppliers, and trust for the search engine is lower than it is for IT events, business publications, technology analysts, trade media and others in the same business. It may come as a surprise that traditional channels such as IT events and business publications continue to rate highly in terms of both usage and trust.

Supplier websites are consulted by more than half of tech buyers, and trust for their content is relatively high at 36%. Technology analysts are the most trusted source at 59%, shortly followed by IT events at 58%.

IT events take on even more significance for IT professionals, 71% of whom use them to learn about new tech suppliers or products. At the other extreme is finance – only 38% of our finance buyers use events. Their favourite source of information is Google, followed by vendor and supplier websites. HR, marketing and operations are also more likely to rely on these sources, as well as the vendor themselves.

To find out more about each tech buyer persona and the best ways to reach them, download the free report today.