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B2B Marketers Need To Step Up Emotional Connections
Laurie Sullivan / MediaPost / September 27, 2013
Emotional connections are much more “intense” for business-to-business clients compared with B2C. Marketers need to win over the horse and the rider — not just the rider, as in consumer products. The findings from a Corporate Executive Board (CEB) study presented at Google’s ThinkB2B event suggests that emotional connections across the organization strengthen business relationships.
The study suggests that a higher level of emotional connection exists between B2B brands and their clients, compared with businesses and their customers. The results from the study should serve as a wake-up call for businesses that have other business as clients, according to Karl Schmidt, head of the CMO practice for CEB. The relationship now requires the business to fulfill the personal and the emotional needs of the client, he said, which should also change the focus of advertising and marketing campaigns.
The study focuses on the processes and requirements behind supplier promotions and the emotions behind the business relationship with clients — not just the one client, but across the entire organization.
B2C companies have used this approach for years. Now it’s time to move the same thought process to B2B marketing. A good portion of a room with 100 B2B suppliers talking about their brands would argue that the idea of “brand advocate” has no value in the B2B world. Another portion would believe “brand” becomes useful only to reinforce general ideas of quality. Companies like Xerox, Grainger, and Edwards Lifesciences have moved to this model with success, Schmidt said.