Peer Reviews: The modern word-of-mouth for enterprise buyers

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You need to buy a new pair running shoes – the best that will meet your needs. What’s the first thing you do?

If you said some version of “check out the latest customer reviews,” you passed the test.

Can you remember what life was like before the paradigm of the ‘0-to-5-star rating’? Thanks to Amazon, Yelp, Uber and too many others to mention, up to 97% of modern consumers rely on reviews to narrow their choices, then shore up their confidence in a particular selection. This consumer framework has certainly found its way into the commercial purchasing process as well.

Social proof

This not-so-new idea of ‘social proof’ plays a starring role in large IT purchases as well. In enterprise application software, for instance, we think about platforms like Gartner Peer Insights, Capterra, G2Crowd and more.

In a 2017 study conducted by Forrester Consulting, “customer/ industry/peer case studies” were rated by technology buyers as the #1 most important content to making technology purchase decisions.1 Also, Gartner’s latest study found that 78% of enterprise technology buyers selected at least 1 of 3 peer-centric information sources as most influential during the technology buying process.2 In other words: peer insights are important in a large majority of technology purchases. They’re one of several ways to de-risk an otherwise risky decision.

Obtaining customer advocacy

As a technology solution provider, you can’t just whip up authentic and positive customer advocacy. It’s born from an established pattern of trust between provider and customer.

At IFS, we continue to closely monitor what our customers are saying about their experiences with us. And, while it’s highly informative for our sales, product and marketing teams, we believe it’s also highly valuable for our current and future customers.

Note and References: IFS is reviewed on Gartner Peer Insights for Midmarket ERP, also for Field Service Management and more.  IFS is evaluated on Capterra, G2Crowd to name a few.
Gartner Peer Insights reviews constitute the subjective opinions of individual end-users based on their own experiences, and do not represent the views of Gartner or its affiliates.
1 Forrester Consulting Study, January 2017
2 Gartner, Tech Go-to-Market: Best Practices for Advocacy Marketing in Technology Companies, Hank Barnes, Oct. 2017, Figure 1

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