The Impact of Digital Disruption on B2B Companies - SmartKarrot Blog

The Impact of Digital Disruption on B2B Companies

Are you aware of the impact created by digital disruption on B2B companies? If not, check out this blog today!

The Impact of Digital Disruption on B2B Companies
The Impact of Digital Disruption on B2B Companies

Technological advancements are bringing massive changes in everything around us. It has paved the path for unexpected disruptions across culture, market, industry, processes, and whatnot. Earlier the sellers had more power to dictate a buyer’s journey over products and services. Now technology has turned the table completely and made customers more in power for the entire journey. Every decision in a business now needs to be made from the point of view of customers rather than the business itself.

Digital disruption affects every industry and every business, including B2B companies. Do you know what impact digital disruption can put on B2B companies? If not, check out this blog today!

What is a Disruptive Innovation or Technology?

First thing first, do you know what disruptive technology is?

To make sure we are on the same page, let us first describe what we mean when we talk about technology bringing disruption to B2B companies. The term disruptive innovation finds its first mention in a book written by Clayton Christensen. The book ‘The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail’ talks about innovative technologies that have the potential to transform an industry completely.

In the simplest terms, disruptive technology, is the newly introduced technology that can completely change an existing system and how people interact with them. In strict business terms, these are the technologies that transform how consumers interact with a business and buy its products and services.

Do you need some examples to understand the above explanation? Okay! Let us give you a few examples for your clarity.

#1 Fax Machine – The introduction of the fax machine provided a new way of communication that was much fast and more efficient than the existing ones. This transformed the way businesses communicated. This was a disruptive technology.

#2 Internet – The Internet is one of the massively disruptive innovations. Before the internet era, businesses relied on magazines, newspapers, radio, and television for advertisements. The internet was not just another medium for advertising. It transformed the entire system of advertising. Earlier advertisements were product-centric internet paved the path to making it customer-centric.

#3 Mobile Phone – The introduction of mobile phones to the general masses compelled businesses to pay more attention to customers’ individuality. The entire customer journey mapping process had to be transformed because of this disruptive technology. 

Types of Disruptive Innovation that can Impact B2B Companies

The list is not exceptionally long. We can divide disruptive innovation impacting B2B companies into three categories.

  1. A new product or service launched in the market that replaces existing ones.
  2. A new technology or innovation that improves the existing product or service.
  3. A new organization that starts providing the customers better value than the existing businesses.

Any of these categories of innovations can prove disruptive for B2B businesses. The current disruptive innovations that are impacting B2B companies include –

  • Social Media – disrupted the traditional models of advertisement
  • Cloud Computing – disrupted the internal working environment of companies.
  • Big Data – disrupted the traditional decision-making patterns of businesses.
  • 3D printing – disrupted the production process of many manufacturing industries.
  • Blockchain – disrupting banking and finance for businesses.
  • Mobile Payments – disrupting the transactions between businesses and customers.
  • Machine Learning Tools – disrupting business functions at higher levels.
  • Robotics – disrupting the way of functioning of labor-intensive jobs.

The Drivers of Disruption for B2B Companies

Technology and digital shifts in the business model have fueled many changes. A lot of these changes have the possibility to bring disruption. The biggest disruption brought in by the digital shift is the shifting of power. Now, customers are getting more attention than ever. They are the center point around which every process and every decision needs to be built.

While customers have been in focus for B2C companies for a long time now. B2B companies are also getting into the zone. Accept it or not, the disruption has already been caused, and B2B companies need to shift their plans and priorities accordingly.

Before we dive deeper into the impact of digital disruption and ways to handle them, it is important to understand the basics. These changes being experienced in the market stem from B2C business shifts, ultimately impacting B2B companies. Some of the drivers of these shifts include –

  • The changing needs and behaviors of customers – Customers’ needs are continually changing with the changing times. This directly impacts customers’ behavior. In earlier days, for example, customer loyalty towards a brand played a significant role in a company’s sales and growth. The role of loyalty is fading entirely, and businesses need to stay on their toes to keep customers hooked.
  • Increased use of information and intelligence – Information and intelligence are being used rapidly for predictive decision-making. This has greatly impacted the speed and volume of decision-making in businesses.
  • Highly increased connectivity and access – The digital world has highly increased access and connectivity for all. Now businesses have umpteen amounts of data about their customers. And, customers have all the means to compare businesses and get reviews from people sitting miles apart. This has definitely made things complex.
  • Use of Automation – Automation of dull and repetitive tasks is also among the leading drivers of disruption. It has not only changed the internal processing in businesses but also their relationship with customers.
  • Increased technology adoption – New technologies are emerging every day. These emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, virtual reality, robotics, sensors, etc., are transforming everything around us. According to these advancements, businesses have increased their rate of adoption of these technologies and need to adapt everything else. Businesses that fail to adopt new advanced technology can become obsolete in no time.   

Using Digital Disruption for Your Advantage

It is important to note that disruption should not be seen in poor light. One needs to gauge the impact of any disruptive innovation on your core business operation and find the opportunities for growth and success created by such disruption. You should also know that early birds get the worm in most cases. So, the businesses that understand and adopt the new technological advancements become the early runners and winners in most cases.

Here are the ways you can use digital disruption for the advantage of your B2B Company.

  • Invest in quality customer data collection technology – In this digital era, data, especially customer behavior and preference, is the most important basis for better decision-making. If you want to keep your B2B Company in the competition, you need to invest in technology that helps you collect and analyze data.
  • Leverage Social Media to its full potential – Social media has undoubtedly transformed the traditional advertisement model. But, it has brought you close and in direct contact with your customers. You need to learn the art of creating a deeper connection with your audience through social media. As a B2B company, you need to deal with other businesses but do not forget that real people sit behind those businesses too. Build relations.
  • Unbundle your product and services – When you bundle all your product and services in a package and offer it to your customer, you do not give them the feeling of being valued. Remember, all your customers do not need the same thing. When you unbundle your product and services and offer them to your customers in a customized package, they feel valued. The digital world gives you the power to understand your customer. Utilize it to make them feel valued, and they will value your company.
  • Use automation at the front-end and back end – Automation takes away a load of boring and repetitive tasks from your employees. But, that is not the only benefit of automation. You can utilize automation to make services faster and seamless for your customers. You can enhance the value of your customer support by utilizing automation. But do not forget to balance it with a human touch.
  • Make it a habit to stay updated about modern technologies – You cannot be fully ready to utilize digital disruption or any other innovative disruptions if you do not know about the latest technology development. So, make it a habit to keep yourself and your team updated about innovations that make a buzz in the market. You need to understand its implications before your competitors stay ahead of them.

Final Words

When we look back, we can see how disruptive innovations made things better for us. So, we do not need to be skeptical about the current disruption. Instead, we need to utilize the disruptions to push us forward on the path of growth and success.

Digital disruptions are transforming everything around, including B2B organizations. Some of the front-runners are already leveraging the benefits. If you are still not ready, you may lag behind. So make sure you understand the impact of digital disruption on the core of your business and utilize every opportunity that it is creating for your B2B Company.

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