Why tech marketers need to think beyond the ITDM

The IT buying process now touches four out of five employees on average. Our new in-depth report explains how marketers can respond

June 5, 2019

Why tech marketers need to think beyond the ITDM

B2B tech marketers are trained to identify, engage and convince IT decision-makers – those all-powerful gatekeepers responsible for deciding what their business needs, deciding on the right supplier and price, and checking that the software and hardware they buy will integrate with the software and hardware they’re already running. And that would have represented a sensible tech marketing strategy – provided you were operating 20 years ago.

The fact is that the structure and mindset of IT buying decisions has changed, and new research from LinkedIn demonstrates just how much it’s changed. Our 2019 Europe Tech Report is part of the most in-depth study we’ve ever conducted into IT buying habits and the new, extended IT buying committee. It shows how tech buying has been transformed through a process of democratisation and delegation.

The new support network for IT decision-making

IT purchases may still be signed off by a lead decision-maker – these days, a Chief Information Officer (CIO) or Chief Technology Officer (CTO). However, these ITDMs don’t shoulder responsibility alone. They’re supported by the developers and super-users who work with suppliers and play a key role in innovation, the procurement and compliance teams that help to sense-check purchases, and the embedded IT specialists who help to shape perceptions of needs. In fact, the average IT buying process now touches four out of every five employees. The vast majority of those employees are involved in scoping out needs in the early stages, framing the priorities for an eventual award of business.

From risk to reward – the new IT buying mindset

The mindset of technology buying has shifted from risk to potential reward – from a focus on maintaining to a focus on innovating. This has been driven by a change in technology, with cloud and SaaS services lifting the maintenance burden and enabling greater agility. It’s also been driven by the threat of disruptive new competitors. Innovation is what keeps established players ahead – and innovation depends on finding new partners to work with.

All of this requires tech marketers to address a far wider addressable audience within the businesses they target – an audience that traditional tech marketing often misses. They must also cater to the very different priorities and mindsets of those involved in the buying committee. To do so effectively, they need brands that can inspire as well as reassure, and marketing strategies that can deliver personalised content to a range of different influencers.

The 2019 Europe Tech Report offers in-depth insight on how the tech buying journey has evolved – and what ITDMs and their extensive buying committees now expect from their suppliers. Download your free copy to explore:

  • The democratisation of IT buying and how it now touches four out of five employees
  • The buying journeys and shortlisting process for different IT categories
  • The roles and functions now influencing buying decisions
  • The key moments when you need advocates and champions on-side
  • The priorities for buyers in different categories – and the messages that will engage them

B2B tech buying isn’t what it used to be. B2B tech marketing shouldn’t be either. Download the 2019 Europe Tech Report to start thinking beyond the ITDM – and start engaging everyone with an influence on buying choices.