Rational or Emotional?

B2B marketing is more personal than you might think!

Most people believe B2B advertising lacks personal emotion. Nothing is further from the truth. Consumer behaviors are consistent. Peoples’ lifestyle, habits and viewpoints remain consistent and aren’t necessarily influenced much differently between a B2B or B2C campaign. With the lack of patience and ever-changing digital landscape, B2B advertising needs to be as fast, concise and as effective as any other campaign. So, what is the secret of creating balance between an ad that enacts emotions and logic when it comes to B2B marketing?

Six Emotions in B2B Buying

According to Geoffrey James, author of “Business Without the Bullsh*t”, purchasing decisions in B2B marketing come down to six primary emotions: greed, fear, altruism, envy, pride and shame.

  • Greed. To tap into the emotion of greed, show the buyer what they’ll win, improve or save by purchasing your service or product.  
  • Fear. Explain the benefits and advantages of your product or service to their business, employees or customers. 
  • Altruism. Do not drone on about yourself or your company, they don’t care. It’s all about them and how you can assist your perspective clients resolve their most pressing issues.
  • Envy. Provide customer testimonials that clearly demonstrate how you are successfully helping other businesses, employees or customers.
  • Pride. Share testimonials from industry leaders who agree that your audience needs and wants this product or service.
  • Shame. Tell them how a delay in decision-making will negatively affect their bottom line and make them uncomfortable, but in a subtle non-threatening way.

Rational vs. Emotional Needs

In a study that examined the impact of personal emotions on B2B purchases, it was found that 71% of decision-makers will make a purchase if an impact is made in their personal lives or within their personal value set. Personal influence on a business owner has twice the impact on purchasing decisions than a logical decision towards their business.

It is vital that marketers create ads that play on a purchaser’s personal value set as well as their rational goals.

In today’s world, information is available at everyone’s fingertips. There is limitless access to research available on companies and products. The drawback to this access and overload of data, is that products and messages can become watered down and lost in the abyss of facts, stats and data.

Your advertising objectives must allow consumers to feel confident that your solution will truly benefit their business. The best way to do this is by effectively customizing and streamlining your message with the right mix of personal value and business benefit.

The union between reason and emotion in advertising requires a subjective ability. You must be able to draw conclusions about what’s in a customer’s head and why and design a sales strategy to address these issues. This is no easy task, and while it’s a challenge, the rewards are worth it. Brands that master this skill are sure to succeed when it comes to marketing.