Historically, many B2B businesses have not invested significant portions of their marketing budget in brand advertising. This was because most business owners believed that price is the main driving factor in B2B purchasing decisions and that B2B buyers are unmotivated by emotional factors.
As a passionate advocate of brand as one of the most important assets your business can have, I’ve always believed that brand marketing is just as important (if not more critical) in B2B marketing. Here are my top 4 reasons why.
It’s your point of difference
Even though business owners like to think that their product or service is truly unique, in reality, there are likely to be dozens of others whose offering is very similar. So how do you stand out in a crowded market? How do you build a strong connection with your customers?
You guessed it, the answer is your brand. Your brand takes your strengths, values, product or service and combines them into one unique, compelling proposition – your unique selling point. It’s what brings your business to life and demonstrates why you are the best choice.
Business people are people too
In the past, many business owners and marketers believed that emotions did not play any part in B2B purchasing decisions. This was based on the belief that B2B buyers were making purchases on behalf of their company so were not personally invested, they were simply looking for the best deal.
However, it is impossible for people to go to work and leave their feelings and personalities at home. This means that B2B buyers interact with B2B brands in a very similar way as consumer brands. In turn this means that brand building, storytelling and emotional connections are an essential part of any B2B marketing strategy.
A strong brand creates customer loyalty
It is cheaper to retain customers than constantly hunt for new ones. This is especially critical for B2B businesses who typically have higher acquisition costs due to a longer and often more complicated decision-making process.
A strong brand is one of the most effective tools you can use to build and maintain brand love which ultimately leads to customer loyalty. It reinforces to your customers that they’ve made the right choice. They’re proud to be associated with your brand and the cachet it brings. This emotional connection is why customers will return AND recommend you to their friends and colleagues.
Your employees benefit too
Having a strong brand doesn’t just benefit your customers and your sales. It can also have positive impacts on employee morale and make it easier to attract good talent.
Your employer brand is your company’s reputation as a place to work. As well as improving staff productivity and retention, a strong employer brand can also have a positive effect on your profitability.
Your employees spend a lot of time at work so it’s only natural that they want to feel proud of both the place they work and the work they do.
The Energise team has worked closely with several clients to develop and enhance their brands both internally and externally. See what they have to say about the process and results.
Do you still need more reasons to invest in your B2B branding?
A strong brand has positive effects on everything from customer loyalty and employee morale to the way your business is perceived. However, if you need even more reasons to invest in branding for your B2B business, here are a few more:
- A strong brand can turn loyal customers into advocates who actively recommend you to others
- Prospective customers are more likely to try a brand they recognise
- Well-established brands can charge a premium price
- Having a strong brand shortens the sales cycle – prospects move more quickly through the early stages of awareness and interest
Now that you know why your B2B business needs a strong brand, the next step is to take an in-depth look at your brand and ask whether it’s working for you. If you need a hand, get in touch. The team here at Energise are experts at getting stuck in and tackling even the most difficult brand problems. We’re also the home of Brand-conic – our unique 3 step system that builds the foundations for your business success.