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Why Emotion Matters in B2B Marketing (and 3 Tips Any Brand Can Use)


What do pride, humor, and joy have in common? They’re all emotions that have been used in successful B2B marketing campaigns.

Emotion is an essential piece of the B2B marketing puzzle, but many brand marketers don’t realize just how important it is.

This post will explain why emotion matters in B2B marketing, and teach you three tips for generating emotion in your own marketing campaigns.

Why Emotion Matters in B2B Marketing


emotion matters in b2b marketing

Emotion matters in B2B marketing for one key reason: B2B consumers have a lot at stake.

When it comes to enterprise decisions, there’s often thousands — if not millions — of company dollars on the line.

According to Karl Schmidt, B2B decisions are emotionally-involved because they can affect someone’s entire career.

These are career-altering type risks and if we don’t think about what it takes to overcome that risk, from a personal, emotional perspective…then we’re missing where we as marketers should really be focused.” — Karl Schmidt, Practice Manager at CEB

As a B2B marketer, it’s important to recognize the emotional and personal risks that your customers are taking by investing in your product. As a result, you’ll be able to create a strategy that proves the value of your tool and helps customers feel more confident in their buying decisions.

Now that you understand why emotion matters in B2B marketing, here are three ways to use emotion in your next campaign.

 

1. Highlight Customers to Evoke Personal and Professional Pride

When you publicly recognize your customers’ successes, they become more excited about your brand.

emotion matters in b2b marketing artifact

Case studies are a great way to make your customers feel proud of their accomplishments. They’re also an easy way to provide prospects with concrete examples of how your tool can help a person achieve their personal and professional goals. 

Pinterest for Business does an excellent job at highlighting its customers’ success stories. For example, this Artifact Uprising success story beings with specific data about the company. Then, Pinterest highlights a quote from the Chief Creative Officer about how Pinterest has played a vital role in Artifact Uprising’s success.
Pinterest emotion matters in b2b marketing

Pinterest for business emotion matters in b2b marketing

Tip #1: In addition to making customers feel proud and accomplished, case studies give you a chance to cultivate strong relationships and build brand loyalty.

 

2. Use Your Brand Voice to Create a Sense of Humor

Just because you have a technical product doesn’t mean your brand has to sound technical.

From state-of-the-art restaurant equipment to advanced digital marketing software, much of a B2B marketer’s job involves writing about technical products.

As a result, B2B copywriting has a reputation for being complicated, full of jargon, and just plain boring.

Hootsuite’s “Mean Tweets” video is a great example of how a B2B brand can generate humor amongst customers. This video is actually an announcement for a user interface update. To spice up the topic and attract more viewers, Hootsuite pokes fun at its old UI and lets their own employees play a part. By being transparent and lighthearted, Hootsuite gives its users a laugh while earning their respect.

Tip #2: Instead of getting caught up in branding buzzwords and industry jargon, think about how you can be creative with even the most technical product copy.  

3. Personalize Messaging to Evoke Joy

B2B marketers tend to view their customers as entire organizations, rather than individuals.Screen Shot 2016-02-04 at 3.04.47 PMThis is problematic because it leads to messaging that is consistently broad and non-specific, rather than targeted. One way to create deeper connections with consumers and make them feel joy is through personalized email campaigns. With so much data available at our fingertips, marketers have all the information they need to create highly personalized emails.

Gusto — a company-wide automated payroll app — takes advantage of customer data by sending highly personalized emails each pay day. The emails are fun, witty, and tailored to your personal paycheck. This creates anticipation for receiving the email, because the creative copy always makes the recipient happy.

Gusto Payroll emotion matters in b2b marketing

emotion matters in b2b marketing gusto This is why emotion matters in b2b marketing

Tip #3: Take advantage of data to create personalized campaigns that help your customers feel joy.

 

For more tips on B2B branding and marketing, check out 7 Successful B2B Brands on Instagram & Why They Work or head over to 4 Ways To Maximize Value From Your Content Marketing


Michelle Polizzi is a freelance writer and former content coordinator for Brandfolder. When she’s not busy writing, you can find her bicycling around Denver, catching a live concert or cooking up a fresh vegetarian dish.

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