Is B2B entirely rational?
There is a common misconception that B2B marketing is the exact opposite of B2C. Some believe that in B2B compared to B2C, people are more rational and listen to their emotions less. While that is true to a certain extent, that is not all of it. People indeed try to be more rational in the B2B, but that does not mean they are entirely disconnected from their emotions. According to a 2006 Harvard Business review article, people can’t make decisions without any emotions guiding them. Harvard university later researched this more deeply in a 2014 paper. One of the things it proved was that we need emotions to set goals which later will be affected by decisions that are also emotion-driven.
B2C vs. B2B Branding
B2B companies’ financial operations are different from B2C’s. Budgets are often much higher, and because of this, a B2B sale usually needs more people’s approval before it is finally completed. Partly due to these higher budgets, B2B sales directly impact the employees’ jobs. If the product or service bought does not deliver, it might lead to people losing their jobs.
Putting all these factors together, B2B brands need to be able to build trust and solid relationships with potential clients as early, during the customer journey, as possible. One of B2B branding’s main goals is to minimize the sense of risk that leads by feel. The easiest way to do this is the most direct one, to show them what their money will get them.
Proving the sold product or service is of high quality can be done by:
· Client testimonials
· Case studies
· List of past and current customers
· Product guarantees
· Quality certificates
Branding, by its essence, is the emotional associations that customers have with a particular company. It can help identify a product and distinguish it among other products or services. It helps create a memorable impression on consumers as it hardwires their brains to relate a particular emotion to the brand.
There are multiple reasons why good branding can be crucial for a B2B company. It can affect how customers perceive the brand, attract new business, and increase brand awareness.
There are five main ways in which good branding can help a company out in its communication and sales:
1) Gets recognition
One of the reasons why branding is of such significance is that if a company has good branding, it will be more easily recognized by its consumers. Human emotions go very deep into who we are, what we like, and what we trust. That is why making sure that your brand connects to the right emotions for your customers is vital.
3) Helps align the touchpoints along the customer journey
When a company has its branding done right, it reflects well its values and culture. All that means that all the different parts, from marketing to sales, to operations and onboarding works together seamlessly and helps build a good synergy.
4) Increases the service/product’s value
We all know how expensive Apple’s products can be. While they are all high-quality tech, their hardware and software are not the only things that make them expensive. The Silicon Valley giant is the world’s most valuable brand. What that means to customers is that they get a promise that whatever they buy is going to work and work well.
5) Helps increase conversion rates
When all previously mentioned is done well, it will lead to higher conversion rates. A well-branded business will attract more people who want a service like the one they offer, and with the information provided, they are more likely to reach out to the sales team.
Operating as a Business to Business company can be very complicated at times, and decisions can be way harder to make. One way to get some weight off the employees’ shoulders is to invest in good branding earlier on. This way, leads will be more likely to come to the company with a smaller investment in marketing and will be more likely to close a deal, making the sales team’s work just a little bit easier.