Why B2B Marketing Is Dead
Laurie Tilley
August 2018

Actually, more to the point, B2B messaging is dead. Why? The answer is simple really:
Businesses don’t make decisions; people do.

As we all know, it’s basic human behavior to want to be engaged, entertained and educated. At the end of the day, we’re all still consumers. And there’s a moment at the beginning of every sales cycle where emotion plays a role in the process—even for those who allegedly make purchasing decisions based solely on the bottom line, using some formulated ROI analysis. 

In today’s world, our personal experiences online, both researching and making buying decisions, now influence our expectations in regards to those same activities in the B2B space. Which is to say, when it comes to reaching your B2B customers, you’re now competing in the same digital sphere of commerce and engagement with the likes of Amazon, YouTube, eBay, Facebook, online forums, etc., making it wildly important that your customers encounter your brand on a similar, personal level.

You know, the human level.

No more leading with industry-speak or dry technical data to woo the hearts and minds of your B2B customers. You’ve got to speak with them directly. Address their concerns and ambitions. And appeal to their emotions.

According to a study conducted by Motista, a predictive intelligence company, most B2C brands have emotional connections with between 10% and 40% of their consumers. And of the nine B2B brands studied, seven surpassed the 50% mark. Suggesting, that on average, B2B customers are significantly more emotionally connected to their vendors and service providers than consumers. It’s time to feel confident in leveraging that knowledge and begin emotionally connecting with your end-user. 

Best of all, you now have the tools to speak to them directly. You no longer have to rely on your distribution channels to deliver your message for you. Engaging with your customers via social media and the digital space (including mobile) is now within your control. 

What does that mean for your B2B company? It’s time to start thinking more like a retailer.

A recent report from Accenture stated that 94% of B2B customers turn to social media/communities to find out what they need to know about business products. To that end, B2B brands with consumer relevance showed a 10% increased chance of being in a business decision-maker’s consideration set. And that number is only going to go higher.
Big data is challenging us to make touch points with our customers and prospects more personal…not less.

As Beth Comstock, CMO of General Electric, says, “Good marketing is the same at the end of the day—we’re all about people. B2B does not mean boring to boring.”

The writing is on the wall. Traditional B2B messaging is on that slippery slope to obscurity. Fortunately, engaging people in the most relevant and authentic way possible is what we do best. Let us help you refocus and reconnect with a more personalized approach to your B2B endeavors.

About Littlefield
Based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Littlefield Agency has been helping regional and national companies grow their brands and businesses since 1980.