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How to define a brand purpose that becomes your B2B brand’s stake in the ground

Why does your B2B brand exist?

If your gut answer is, “to make a profit,” or “I’m not sure,”  then you should really consider a brand purpose.

You’re probably rolling your eyes right now, and we get that. The term does sound like nonsense marketing-speak. But there are real advantages to nailing down your B2B company’s brand purpose. Bonus, it’s not as complicated as it seems.

Just hear us out. We’ll take you through the ins and outs of brand purpose, and provide a strategy to define one — and leverage it — for your B2B brand.

B2B Brand Purposes’ Identity Crisis

B2B marketers may be skeptical about brand purpose because they have incorrect preconceived notions about what it even is. Let alone how to take advantage of it.

Know this first, a brand purpose does NOT have to be:

  • Explicit. Typically, B2B brands aren’t broadcasting their brand purpose verbatim to their customers. Instead, brand purpose drives decisions made internally that subtly and consistently communicate your values to your customers externally. Customers might have a feel for your brand purpose because of the decisions you’re making to stay true to it, but it’s not something corny you’re required to shout from the rooftops if you don’t want to.
  • Complicated. Brand purpose is uncovered, not invented from scratch. It’s not some pie-in-the-sky marketing concept contrived out of nothing with no practical application either. In fact, we’d wager that you already have a perfectly suitable (and simple) brand purpose and just don’t know it or use it. More on that later.
  • Philanthropic. The shoe brand TOMS is the original buy one, give one brand. It’s a fantastic brand purpose, no doubt. But sometimes B2B brands get stuck thinking a brand purpose has to be philanthropic, and that’s false. If your B2B company is already engaged in the community, a brand purpose centered around giving might make sense for you. Still, understand that brand purpose isn’t married to philanthropy by default.

Defining a Brand Purpose Once and For All

What is a brand purpose, then? Well, it’s really quite simple. A brand purpose is the reason your B2B brand exists, aside from making money.

It’s a cocktail of core values, mission, and business strategy. A brand purpose is your Northstar, ensuring you stay true to your founding principles as you make decisions for your B2B company.

We said it’s simple, and it is in practice. It’s the concept of brand purpose that can be confusing to grasp.

4 B2B-Specific Benefits of Rocking a Brand Purpose

You’ve arrived at the “why this matters to my bottom line” section. Congratulations! Lucky for you, the advantages of a successfully implemented brand purpose are far-reaching for B2B brands.

Consistent, Brand Purpose-Driven Decisions Comfort Customers

We’ve already established that a brand purpose serves as a helpful checkpoint when you’re making decisions for your B2B company. Should we take on this new product?

Moreover, it’s important to note that these consistent decisions, flowing from your brand purpose, make for a consistent and gratifying customer experience.

Customers’ Emotional Connection with Brand Purpose Breeds Loyalty

All B2B brands crave loyal customers. It’s what keeps that revenue coming in, right? Consider how brand purpose can foster brand loyalty too.

It’s human nature to seek shared experiences and bond over shared interests. A brand purpose can show your customers you share their interests and values. That fosters an emotional connection between your B2B company and your customers that won’t falter should something go wrong.

Brand Purpose Unites Employees and Streamlines Image

Your brand purpose might reach your customers subliminally, but it should be obvious to your employees.

Use your brand purpose to align your employees around shared goals and a united image. Talk frequently internally about how decisions ultimately support your brand purpose, and involve your employees whenever possible. You’ll likely find that your brand purpose is another source of truth that keeps everyone on the same page.

How To Unveil Your B2B Company’s Brand Purpose

Once you’ve figured out what you stand for, you just need to bring it to light and put structure around it so you can realize all of the benefits of a thoughtful brand purpose for your company.

But how?

Littlefield has deep B2B-centric experience helping B2B marketers uncover their unique brand purpose.

We host collaborative workshops with marketing teams to explore their values and goals, and form them into a refined, actionable brand purpose. We’ll even work with you to align your brand’s day-to-day activities and choices with your minted brand purpose to ensure that all-important consistency.

Having an independent third-party guide the discussion around your brand purpose is invaluable. We offer fresh, outsider perspectives that you might be too close to your company to see. These new views contribute significantly to a meaningful brand purpose.

It’s time to uncover the brand promise that can push your brand forward. Let’s talk.


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