b2b email marketing

Exploring The Differences Between B2C and B2B Email Marketing

How you market your brand depends greatly on who your audience is, which is why b2c (business to consumer) and b2b (business to business) marketing are very different strategies. As such, your email marketing strategy is going to depend heavily on whether or not you’re marketing b2b or b2c. The following are some of the differences between b2c and b2b email marketing to keep in mind:

Optimal Send Time

Knowing when to send your emails has a big impact on whether or not they’re opened. B2c customers are more likely to check their emails in the evenings or on the weekends since they are busy working during the day. B2b recipients are more likely to open them during work hours since they often check their work email regularly throughout the day.

Spam Filters

Spam filters work a bit differently with b2b and b2c customers. B2b customers often use filters that check for certain keywords before deciding whether to inbox the email or automatically sort it into the junk folder. With b2c customers, it’s more about building a good sending reputation with minimal complaints.

Personalization And Segmentation

While personalization and segmentation are important for both, they’re a bit different. With b2c customers, you’ll want to personalize products and content based on individual taste. With b2b customers, personalization should be a bit more subtle, such as by highlighting new stories within their industry or providing case studies that match their needs.

How Customers Respond

B2b customers buy from people, whereas b2c customers buy from brands. This means that when you send emails to b2b customers, you should expect a potential reply. Make sure that you include contact information, such as a phone number and who the email is from so that it’s easy for b2b recipients to reply. This isn’t as important for b2c customers.

The Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing Automation

Triggers

Using triggers to automate emails to your b2c customers helps to drive them back to your website. However, email triggers don’t work as well for b2b customers. Instead, use triggers for phone calls from your sales team instead.

Buying Cycles

B2b buying cycles are typically longer than b2c buying cycles. This is because you’re not just nurturing a single type of customer like you would in a b2c situation. Instead, you’re having to nurture a group of decision makers. Not to mention that in b2c situations, customers are more likely to make faster decisions based on emotion.

The Role of Content

Because buying cycles are longer in b2b situations, your customers will benefit more from educational and non-promotional forms of content, such as white papers, whereas b2c customers might be more moved to action by testimonials and case studies right off the bat.

These are some of the differences between b2c and b2b email marketing that you should know before crafting your email marketing campaign. The last thing you’ll want to do is to use b2c tactics for your b2b email marketing strategy (or vice versa) since this will hurt your ability to nurture your leads.

email marketing program

What’s Trending in Marketing for June 2018

Staying up-to-date on marketing trends is a great way to reflect and verify whether your marketing efforts are in tune with what’s going on in today’s marketplace. We’re aware that keeping up with these trends can often be difficult given the abundance of information thrown at us every day.

The following articles come from popular marketing blogs and highlight current marketing trends that we think are worth paying attention to:

Noteworthy Marketing News and Trends

Instagram’s New Native Payment Feature For Users

According to an article by Josh Constine on TechCrunch, Instagram’s new native payment feature will allow individuals to buy services or book appointments without having to leave the application. Users can now register their credit or debit card as part of their profile and will not be forced to go to a separate website or re-enter their payment information when purchasing a service. For businesses, this exciting feature will lead to higher conversion rates, as people will feel less inclined to quit in the middle of the checkout process and will make Instagram an even more powerful player in commerce. The potential of this feature has also enticed businesses to want to increase spending on advertising their services on Instagram.

Read our article to learn tips on how to use Instagram for your business.

Facebook’s Expansion of Reporting Options For Advertisers

Facebook’s Ads Reporting platform will be updated over June and the new changes will allow advertisers to customize their reports to their liking according to a recent write up on Marketing Land. The platform will also make things a lot easier for advertisers as it will include a side panel so they can edit ads on the same screen as the campaign page without having to switch back and forth between tables. Along with the updated platform, a new “creative reporting” metric will also be introduced and will provide users with useful information on which of the implemented creative ad elements are performing best.

Improving Your Marketing Program

Improve Your Marketing Strategy By Asking These 4 Questions

What separates a successful business from the rest? For Dan Gartlan, it’s the constant improvement and updating of marketing strategy. Updating your business’s strategy will demonstrate to consumers and competitors that you are in tune with the changes in your competitor’s messaging, methods of communication, consumer concerns, and the overall marketplace. In this article, Gartlan challenges you to reevaluate aspects of your business in relation to your marketing strategy by asking four key questions.

6 Email Marketing Tips

Email marketing continues to be a popular form of marketing and given the abundance of emails people receive daily, it’s important to make sure that your email looks good and stands out. Our own Nicole Wagner published a blog posts that offers tips on how to make the best out of your email marketing.

Recent Marketing Reports, Updates, and Trends

Amazon, Homebuilders Unveil Smart Home ‘Amazon Experience Center’ in California

A new partnership between Amazon and Lennar, one of the largest homebuilders in the U.S., plans to shake things up with their efforts to create pre-wired, voice-activated smart homes that will change the future for homebuyers. A recent article on Security Info Watch explores how Lennar plans to integrate Amazon’s Alexa voice-assistant program into the design of the future homes they are going to construct. They have already constructed several models of these smart homes across the nation so people can experience what it would be like to live in one. Amazon and Lennar are convinced that this partnership and new creation will allow people to have greater control over their lives and could potentially make doing chores a thing of the past.

Influencer Marketing for B2B Brands in 2018

While you might believe that influencer marketing is solely for B2C brands, Michael Brito asks you to think again. Influencer marketing has proven to be efficient in increasing ROI and reaching audiences. According to Brito, the principles of influencer marketing can be also be applied to B2B markets and the implementation of it for these brands can be explained using the 1:9:90 model of influence, which has been used in the past to find, segment, and activate groups of people. By applying this model and understanding the differences between each group, you can then determine the best way to engage with influencers and encourage them to talk about your company.

marketing trends

marketing-make-or-break

What’s Trending in Marketing

Keeping up with what’s trending in marketing is an important way to ensure that your marketing efforts remain up to date. Not to mention that they can provide insight into how you can adjust your marketing strategies in order to improve your results. The only problem is that keeping up with what’s trending in marketing can be quite a challenge seeing as how the online marketing landscape seems to always be shifting.

The following are a collection of articles that we have curated from some of the most notable marketing blogs on the web highlighting recent marketing trends that we think you should be aware of:

1. Noteworthy Marketing News and Trends

The power of podcasting: How to boost your reputation and search engine rankings

Podcasts have exploded in popularity over the past five years, taking on the position that radio once had in our lives. As you can imagine, there’s a lot of opportunity for marketing using podcasts as a result. A recent article about podcasts published on Search Engine Land recommends establishing yourself as an authority within your field through the creation of webinars, video content, a social media presence and more. This helps build credibility so that you’ll have a better chance at being invited onto a podcast. Once you’ve built a name for yourself, you’ll want to pitch podcast ideas that can benefit your SEO efforts to podcast hosts that are relevant to your business.

YouTube’s new TrueView for Reach option makes bumper assets skippable

According to an article by Ginny Marvin on Marketing Land, YouTube recently introduced a skippable option for short-form ads that are called TrueView for Reach, which can be skipped after five seconds; however, advertisers only pay if the viewers watch 30 seconds, the viewer interacts with the ad or the video ends. YouTube has implemented this new option in response to requests for ways to optimize TruView buys based on the different campaign objectives that customers have. One of the beta testers of the TrueView for Reach option, Samsung, revealed that it reached over 50 percent more people at half the CPM (cost per thousand) using the new feature.

Google Switches to Infinite Scrolling Mobile Search Results

Google has switched from having to click from page to page on their mobile SERP (search engine results page) to being able to scroll down infinitely by clicking on a “more results” button. This could potentially change what it means to rank on the first page of SERP according to a recent write up on the new infinite scrolling feature on Search Engine Journal. However, it’s currently in a test phase, which Google will only make permanent based on user feedback.

What other trends are there? Check out these ten ways to use Google Trends to Increase SEO!

2. Growing Your Inbound Marketing

Do You Need to Redesign Your Website?

Your website plays a huge role in your ability to market effectively. If it’s been a while since you updated your website, it may be in need of a redesign. Our own Nicole Wagner did a write up recently sharing some of the signs that a website needs to be redesigned. These signs include poor web rankings, a change in branding, a lackluster conversion rate, an outdated look and a subpar user experience.

Your Company’s Core Values Play a Role in Developing Your Brand Story

Storytelling is one of the most important aspects of marketing. Without it, you’ll have trouble engaging with your audience and connecting with them. We recently published a blog post on developing your brand story detailing how important it is to employ storytelling in order to share what your company’s core values and beliefs are and how that will evoke stronger emotions and build stronger bonds with your audience.

3. Recent Marketing Reports, Updates, and Trends

Pinterest reports 50% gain YoY in SMB advertisers

The Pinterest Propel ad program has been around for a whole year now and it recently reported a 50 percent jump in small and medium-sized business advertisers since it first went live. Pinterest has made a concerted effort to position their platform as an effective tool for advertisers and also revealed that businesses who are using Pinterest Propel are earning three times as many clicks than those who are not — and are even experiencing an average of 15 percent lower cost-per-clicks within the first 90 days.

Snapchat looks to offer new e-commerce options for Discover Publishers

According to a recent post on Marketing Land, Snapchat is currently testing a new e-commerce option on some of its Discover publisher channels. The new feature will allow users to swipe on products within the Discover platform in order to buy them from the Snap Store. Although they are just testing the waters, the company seems to have great ambition for its store’s future potential. Several publishers have revealed that they have tested the new feature and that currently, Snapchat is not taking a revenue share from any of the products being sold so far during the testing stage.

Facebook & Cambridge Analytica: What we know, what they knew & where that leaves us

Facebook has been all over the news as of late due to the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Considering the fact that many businesses leverage the use of Facebook for their marketing efforts, you’ll want to know where the future of Facebook lies. A recent article on Marketing Land goes into detail about the scandal as well as Mark Zuckerberg’s recent testimony in front of Congress addressing the issue of Facebook’s privacy settings and user consent.

The future of retail is Generation Z-dependent — and martech is the way to reach them

A new generation (Generation Z) is coming of age, and like every generation before them, their buying habits are different. Rohit Gupta explains how important it is for businesses to begin adjusting their marketing efforts to better target this upcoming generation by providing numerous tips. These tips include customizing the purchase journey, connecting through social media, preparing for the use of voice recognition technology, and focusing on convenient shipping options.

mobile marketing techniques

artificial intelligence

What AI means To B2B Marketing Strategies

Artificial intelligence is no longer just a concept explored through pop culture; it’s a very real thing that has become increasingly prevalent throughout society, even in the creation of B2B marketing strategies. In fact, the use of AI is practically commonplace now. For example, the use of AI is what allows Amazon to recommend personalized products based on your buying and browsing habits. It also allows your GPS to provide you with the best possible route. For business owners and marketers, AI has also become essential to improving B2B marketing strategies.

The Benefits of AI in B2B Marketing Strategies

The following are just a few ways that the use of AI can help to improve B2B marketing strategies:

Improve the customer experience via personalization

Businesses no longer directly interact with brands when they are doing product or service research. This means it can be difficult to mine information from potential clients or business partners. The use of AI technology can help you collect data that provides insight into the behavioral patterns of both existing and potential clients or partners. This means that your marketing efforts no longer have to be limited to certain sectors, you’ll be able to target specific businesses with messages designed to provide solutions to their specific needs, thereby improving the customer experience as well.

Improve your marketing strategy

The use of behavioral analysis and machine learning can help you to better understand what the pain points of your target audience is. Behavioral analyses also allows you to craft a more effective marketing strategy to reach and convert that audience.

Find out how to build your brand story with your B2B marketing strategy.

Save money by saving time

The use of AI technology means that you don’t have to spend hours analyzing data. This type of data can be collected and analyzed by AI programs for you. It will allow you to dedicate more time to other aspects of your business.

Improve results with lead scoring

Trying to chase down every lead is typically a waste of time since not all leads are equal. The use of AI technology can allow you to score your leads using all of the behavioral data that you’ve collected. This, in turn, allows you to pinpoint businesses that are much more likely to convert. It allows for a better use of your resources since you can identify the best prospects and prioritize your most promising accounts.

The use of artificial intelligence will help to improve your B2B marketing strategies in any number of ways, whether it’s by helping you to collect and organize more valuable data that can be used to more effectively target qualified leads using personalization, or simply being able to make better use of your resources. Be sure to visit us at Stevens & Tate to take advantage of our free downloadable marketing tools, which can be leveraged to help improve your B2B marketing efforts.

For more resources on Attraction Marketing, click here.

case study questions

The Benefits of Using Case Studies

Consumers are a lot less susceptible to fancy sales pitches in this day and age, which is why the use of case studies can be very effective in building brand trust. Many consumers will ask friends and family for recommendations or look up online reviews before doing business with a particular brand. They do this because they simply trust other consumers more than they are willing to trust a brand. It’s due to these reasons that you should consider using case studies. We’ve gone over the case study questions you should ask, but the following is some information on what they actually are and how they can benefit your marketing efforts:

What are Case Studies?

Case studies are similar to testimonials in that they provide audiences with an account of previous customer experiences with the brand. However, testimonials are typically basic interviews that function as little more than positive reviews. Case studies are more in-depth and concern the entire process that the customer went through. Basically, it’s a depiction of their buyer journey and how your business helped to fulfill their needs from beginning to end. This allows for an element of storytelling that’s much more engaging

What are the Benefits of Using Case Studies?

Although case studies require a lot more effort to put together than the typical testimonial, it’s well worth the time and resources required. Many businesses will even produce their case studies as video content that their audiences can watch. The following are just a few of the benefits of creating case studies:

Build brand trust

Case studies are extremely effective in building trust because of the very fact that they represent the viewpoint of your previous customers. Instead of you telling your audience how great your brand is and how effective your products or services are, you’re having your customers do it for you. Not only do audiences trust other consumers more than they trust companies, but by allowing your previous customers to tell their stories, they are basically endorsing your brand, which gives your business more credibility.

Engage through storytelling

Simply having customers tell the audience that your product is great is just a basic customer testimonial. It’s not that interesting, nor is it very engaging. Case studies are more concerned with telling the story of the customer. The customer is the hero, their problem is the conflict and your brand’s solution is the resolution. The use of storytelling helps to make a brand much more relatable and will allow your audience to see how you fulfilled that customer’s need at every stage of the buyer journey.

Click here to learn about the differences between storytelling and storybranding.

Identify brand evangelists

To find the subjects of your case studies, you’ll need to speak to several clients or customers and request that they participate. Those that are willing are your brand evangelists. They are offering to tell their story because they believe in your brand. Knowing who your brand evangelists are is helpful because they can help improve your brand reputation through word-of-mouth marketing.

Assist your sales team

Having an assortment of case studies available on your site can be hugely beneficial to your sales team. This is because they can recommend prospects to watch specific case studies of previous customers who may have had similar problems. This, in turn, can help them close deals.

As you can see, case studies can be very beneficial to your marketing efforts. Don’t forget to read up on the important case study questions you should ask, and be sure to take a look at some of the marketing tools that we offer for download at Stevens & Tate.

business story

b2c marketing automation

Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing Automation

Marketing automation offers a company the chance to centralize most of its marketing activities into a single software platform and to automate it to an extent. This centralization appeals to both B2B (business to business) and B2C (business to consumer) companies. However, the way B2B and B2C marketing automation works is different due to fundamental differences between the two groups.

Why Is Marketing Automation Between B2B and B2C Different?

Effective marketing addresses each customer’s individual goals and needs. This remains true whether the customer is B2B or B2C. Because these groups have differing goals and needs, the way you market to them has to be different. As a result, the following differences remain when you use marketing automation:

  • The marketing focus differs:
    • With B2B, the focus is on generating leads and keeping their subscribers engaged throughout the longer sales cycle.
    • With B2C the focus is on building the brand.
  • The tactics used are different:
    • B2B marketing delivers content that positions the company as an industry leader, while nurturing the lead in the sales process.
    • B2C marketing is about the customer journey and making data-driven recommendations for products or services.
  • The tone of the messages is different:
    • B2B messages are to targeted groups at different stages of the sales cycle.
    • B2C messages are more personal and highly relevant to the individual.

[Here Are 5 Benefits Of Marketing Automation]

How B2C Marketing Automation Differs From That of B2B

With all the differences between marketing to the B2B and B2C groups, it’s easy to see why their marketing automation needs differ as well.

  • Communication channels. While both B2B and B2C businesses rely on email for marketing, the B2C use other channels as well. Text messaging, push notifications and retargeting are just a few examples. The B2C marketing automation solution needs to handle these additional channels.
  • Data used. B2B consumers are businesses that have specific needs. Marketing data for this group would include approximate company size, industry, point of contact and specific needs. B2C consumers are individuals with specific tastes. Marketing data for this group includes age, gender, purchase history and frequently visited product categories.
  • Features needed. B2B companies need help with nurturing their leads through the sales cycle. They want features like lead scoring and integration with their CRM system. B2C companies want to retain the customers they get, so they want features like reputation management, retargeting and retention marketing.
  • Marketing focus. B2B marketing focuses building the one-on-one relationship. B2C is more about building the brand and building mass appeal.
  • Pricing. B2B automation is priced based on the number of contacts managed within the system. B2C automation is priced based on the volume of data. It is not uncommon for B2B automation to have only 100 contacts in the system while B2C has thousands.

The differing approaches of B2B and B2C marketing lead to their different marketing automation solutions. Trying to substitute one strategy for the other is difficult, due to different features and pricing structures. If you need help finding the right solution for your business, call us here at Stevens-Tate.

traffic, leads & revenue

B2B sales

How To Use Social Media To Drive B2B Sales

In spite of the enormous success of social media marketing, many B2B companies still haven’t successfully jumped on the social train. This because many B2B companies are unsure how to utilize their social media platforms to the best of their advantage. Sharing will help alot, when it comes to attraction marketing.

Social media channels enable you to reach a wide net of potential customers and connect with individuals on a more personal level. More people are using these platforms to research potential purchasing decisions. Therefore, your posts should be educating potential buyers about what you have to offer and showcasing why you’re an authoritative source. Despite what you may have heard, you don’t have to post memes or funny videos to stand out.

If you’ve put your social media strategies on the back burner, you’re missing out on a great opportunity. Here are some ways social media can improve your B2B sales:

How to reach your target audience:

The first step in developing your social media strategy should be to develop a roadmap of whom you want to send your social media messages to. This outline will help you reach the right people at the right time and ensure your messages won’t be lost in all of the noise. Your outline should include the messages you wish to send to your target audience. You’ll want to ask yourself the following:

  • Who is your audience?
  • What social media platforms do they use?
  • What is the end goal of your social media posts?

Once you’ve developed your plan, it’s time to set your posts into action.

[Read About B2B Branding Tips For The New Buyer]

How to target businesses on social media:

When most people think B2B sales and social media, they think of Linkedin. While LinkedIn is known as the top social platform for businesses, this doesn’t mean other platforms should be ignored. Social media isn’t solely about generating B2B sales leads; it’s also about strengthening your brand awareness.

With social media, you’re able to humanize your brand by personally engaging with your audience. Since most people are turning to Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter, to look for solutions to their problems, your company should be visible on these platforms and ready to assist them.

How to cater your message to businesses:

Social media is a great place to showcase your brand’s level of expertise and gain trusted adviser status. Since most buyers are 60% into the buying decision before they even reach out to a sales representative, your posts should reach them early on in their journey. You can do this by posting helpful and educational content that will nudge potential customers along the sales cycle without seeming “pushy”. Case studies, blogs, product demos, and videos are great ways to initially convey your messages to your audience.

How to turn interest into a lead:

Like all marketing, social media marketing’s end goal is to generate qualified leads. All of your posts should have a content offer or call-to-action in order to urge your visitors to take steps toward purchasing. Make sure all of your social media platforms redirect to your website, and vice versa. Easy navigation is key to successful online marketing.

Your company’s social media marketing will be successful if you create personal relationships with your customers and provide them with valuable and educational content. Social media gives you the opportunity to reach a larger audience than ever before. Take this opportunity and run with it!

search engine optimization

B2B website

Three Videos Every B2B Website Should Have

Research shows that relevant, compelling content is a key ingredient for making your website stand out. While some websites may have great landing pages, they may lack other types of content. If you want your B2B website to beat the competition and increase sales, you need to include video content.

Visual is rapidly becoming the most effective technique in the web marketing mix. Video content can increase your online traffic by more than 40%, as it adds personality, digestibility, and context to your website. Here are three types of video you should include in your website in order to increase search engine visibility.

1. Customer case studies

A great way to market your business is through word-of-mouth from satisfied customers or business associates. Referrals enhance the element of trust that potential clients are looking for in a business. To create a case study video, request some of your satisfied customers to create a case study video, where they can describe the services or products that you offer and express their satisfaction. A case study video could convince your undecided leads that your business is the right fit for them.

[Read about Integrating Story Branding With Your B2B Marketing Strategy]

2. Your team in action

You can increase your prospects by visually portraying how your company performs a service. Potential clients want to know if you have the resources and the expertise to meet their expectations, and you can prove this via video. If you provide manufacturing services, for example, you can capture how specific machinery works. If you’re a marketing agency, you can post a video demonstrating how your team goes from brainstorming ideas to producing your final product. For potential clients, the sight of your employees in action offers a glimpse inside your business.

3. Instructional videos or tutorials

One way to demonstrate your expertise to potential customers is to produce instructional content. Create visual cues on how to carry out a certain service related to what your business does for other businesses. For example, if your company provides home decoration services, you can produce a video explaining the remodeling process. You can demonstrate how your crew handles equipment for the job, as well as “before and after” images of a remodeled house.

 

Every B2B website should include compelling video content to capture the interest of prospective business partners. These days, the majority of online users would rather watch videos than read about a product or service. Capitalize on this powerful but affordable medium in order to drive leads and increase sales.

marketing strategy

b2b branding

B2B Branding Tips For The New Buyer

Over the past few years, B2B business has seen a dramatic shift in the decision makers involved in purchasing. Now more than ever before Millennials are at the forefront of the company decisions especially when it comes to purchasing. According to a survey conducted by Google 2015 was the first year that nearly half of all B2B purchase influencers were Millennials. This shift impacts not only the B2B branding message but where that message is displayed as well since most Millennials spend a majority of their day online.

One of the biggest differences between Millennials and decision makers in the past is how they evaluate and research potential purchases. The same traditional advertising that worked on baby boomers is not going to work on Millennials and chances are they’re much further down in the purchase funnel before they even contact you. Thanks to the Internet and social media, decision makers do their own research on what they need, want, and whom they want to work with.

With more than 87 percent of online Millennials using Facebook and other social media sites, it’s imperative that your business has a strong social media and online presence however it’s not as simple as setting up pages and scheduling out posts. Millennials are looking for brands that are approachable, easy to navigate and as odd as this sounds more human.  Even in this hyper-connected world people still want to be connected with real people, especially in B2B transactions. The most successful B2B companies have utilized their social media pages to reach out directly to their customers and build a sense of community with their brand and customers. It’s extremely important to assure your audience that you or your team of people will be there for them and that you can solve some of their pain points.

Read more on Using Your Brand Story To Reach Millennials In Business.

So, how does a brand convey all of this to their audience? Here are 4 things you should be talking about in your B2B branding:

Have a Purpose

Many argue that this is more geared to B2C businesses but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Showing your company culture and your core values, or the reason why you do what you do is just as important in B2B marketing. Millennials more than any other audience are looking to work with companies that leave a positive impact on the world or those that have a great story about how they started.  Your brand values such as your mission statement and communication style will help create a personality and purpose behind your brand.

Read more on improving your B2B customer experience.

Knowledge

Potential customers are looking to solve a problem and they need to be confident that you will be able to solve it for them. Showing that you’re an authoritative source is one of the most important parts of your B2B branding.

Service

B2B buyers want someone that’s going to still make them feel that they have a 1 to 1 relationship even if they never communicate with you directly. Show them that you’re a company with real people who are willing to go the extra mile to get the job done.

Dependability

Showing that you can be depended on will take your brand messaging far. B2B buyers need to know that they can depend on you to get the job done so they can focus on other parts of their business. They don’t want to feel that they need to micromanage your work.

This generation is looking to be proud of who they purchase from. Today’s world is so much more transparent and connected and Millennials are not only used to that they expect you to be as well. It’s important that they are proud of who they buy from. By using ‘story branding’ companies can set a tone and feel for who they are and why they do what they do. With buyers getting inundated with so many screens and messages, stories help keep your B2B branding clear to your audience. The story with the strongest messaging that delivers an authentic feeling will stand out from the crowd. At the end of the day, B2B buyers are still, in fact, people and people love a good story.

inbound marketing strategy

b2b marketing strategy

Integrating Story Branding With Your B2B Marketing Strategy

Marketers have realized that their audiences’ attention spans are getting shorter by the day. In an effort to get it back, they resort to anything to engage them: humor, sex, etc. However, it is one thing to get involved in a commercial and another to get involved in a brand. Successful brands market by forging a deeper emotional connection using story branding which is a part of attraction marketing.

In a technique called The Hero’s Quest, they create a story with a hero, a conflict, and a resolution. The hero has a certain drive like love that leads him to action past certain barriers and eventual conquest. Generating emotional connection with the story is what sells. To be successful in B2B marketing strategy, make your brand the hero of your own story.

Where story branding and marketing integrate:

Distinction

Consumers have vast amounts of choice today but are drawn to the one they can relate to. Distinction is vital in any marketing strategy. A good, realistic brand story enhances a brand’s overall presence regardless of its competitive position in the industry. The right perception hits the audiences’ emotional quotient, tipping it in your favor. Wrapping up your brand in a more meaningful story context further adds value to it. To fellow businesses, buying your product will mean getting higher utility compared to the others in the competition.

Humanizing your brand

A successful B2B marketing strategy is one that humanizes your brand. A brand story cannot be underestimated in doing the job. Individual experiences like those of Steve Jobs, when fed into a company message, go a long way in personalizing and even achieving celebrity like status for your brand. You can use employee or your founder experience for this. Although you cannot have complete control of your story, a little positive twist helps to strengthen it by making it more interesting. Your marketing strategy is even boosted further as a result. A story should be a corporate persuasion tool that leads your audience to you.

Read more on 4 Strategies For Improving Your B2B Customer Experience.

Emotion is more compelling than a straight fact

In spoken word, good oratory skills are regarded highly and can be more compelling when they involve more emotion than fact. Arousing an audiences’ emotion can create big turnaround in your brand path. The Royal navy for example, uses stories to boost confidence and productivity where it is expected of the military to have a tough, factual approach to communication. That B2B cannot use warm and emotive storytelling is not a true rationale. Make your story more willingly received and memorable to achieve greater marketing success.

Interplay

There is a two way exchange between telling a story and marketing success. Story branding strengthens your business whereas a good, stronger business performance reinforces your story. Similarly, poor performance becomes part of your brand story just as easily. A B2B marketing strategy can be shaped but success will always depended on perception. Story branding is one way of building this perception.