If you work in marketing for a business-to-business (B2B) brand, chances are you’ve invested a lot of time, effort, and budget into using tech and data to automate, target, and segment your marketing messages. But, post-pandemic, it’s time to think differently. It’s time to focus on the creative.
“Put simply, inspiring B2B brands close more deals. In fact, the correlation between inspire score and conversion was found to be stronger in B2B than in B2C.”
In 2021, millennials now account for well over a third of all B2B buyers. This is the first generation who grew up with the internet at their fingertips and they buy differently from their predecessors. Your millennial buyers want to see short, bite-sized content. Videos, social media and thought leadership pieces should all feature in your B2B marketing plan. Millennials will also hold in high regard community content with testimonials from your customers and peer recommendations.
This was a pattern already forming pre-2020 but is now sped up with digital audience data now becoming more unreliable. Whereas “marketing automation has doubled in size since 2017” hyper-targeting your B2B audience has become more difficult post-pandemic. With people’s office locations now being more fluid than ever before, any data you’re gathering is likely to be out of date.
Leading, global marketing communications agency, Wunderman Thompson, says now is the time to shift focus away from data and on to creative. Their recent ‘Inspire Research’ found “creative, inspiring brands are not just more effective, they are more efficient, too. We saw that in B2B specifically, a strong ‘inspire’ score predicts demand, price premium, and conversion.
Our recent Inspire Research found that creative, inspiring brands are not just more effective, they are more efficient, too. We saw that in B2B specifically, a strong ‘inspire’ score predicts demand, price premium, and conversion.
“Much of the B2B world has forgotten that business people think and act like regular consumers”
Wunderman Thompson says the B2B trade should take a leaf out of the B2C book when thinking about their marketing strategies. After all, B2B buyers are also B2C consumers. Wunderman Thompson makes the point that although a B2B procurement involving large sums of money requires a rational thought process, there is also an emotional aspect to any human decision making which needs to be considered. B2B buyers are not immune to human traits and B2B marketers should factor that into their own plans.
If you’d like to read more about how you can better market your B2B business and inspire your B2B buyers, the full Wunderman Thompson article can be read here
Guest author Katie Forman, Content Manager, Aspin Management Systems.