B2B buyers will be, and always have been humans with emotions. Despite this, B2B marketers have not always woven this information into their strategies. They use complex, feature-laden language which can make the buying process difficult.
All of us have learned what makes a smart business purchase: ROI. ROI is serious. ROI isn’t fun, engaging, adventurous, or inspirational. But it is important, and we’d be fools to not understand it. At the same time, it isn’t the end-all of persuasion, especially as products become more commoditized and less differentiated.
As emotive humans, buyers are not pure ROI, feature-evaluating robots. People like drama. They like humor. They like novelty. Ideas like emotion, empathy, and values are at the heart of our culture. They want to engage with personable, creative brands that know how to make ideas “pop” and create long relationships with them.
For B2B marketers, the thought of including emotion in their work may be intimidating. How can someone relate on an emotional level to such straightforward topics? But by using emotion in their work, B2B marketers can elevate their brand to stand out above most others. Trust, confidence, and humor are all ways to engage customers by incorporating it into previous selling tactics. As younger generations become more prevalent in the corporate world, there has been a shift from seeing strictly professional life to a blend of professional life and personal experience. Consumers want to share values with companies and know the people they are working with on a personal level. They want to work with brands that touch on fairness, the environment, diversity, and equity. They want to see real action being taken and see how brands really can make a difference in the world and in their relationship.
Personalization in communications can help make the emotional approach possible. It can be used hand in hand with data, and when used correctly makes the experience for the buyer much more impactful.
The idea of “human enablement” vs. “technology” captures these concepts in way that can elegantly merge with a B2B brand’s core messaging. The company strives to move human wellbeing forward, whether that’s through the tactical value of their products or how they affect society at large.
Want to learn the key components of creative transformation needed to move forward? Read Merkle’s new report, Push the B2B Boundaries, here and learn how you can obtain a more creative and out of the box process.