In B2B, It’s Not “What”, It’s “Who”


B2B is often dominated by features and benefits, industry-standard claims, and a surprising lack of emotion. Why?

We ask you to think, for a moment, about people.

  • Those people in companies who buy your products.
  • Those people within your own company that imagine, build, sell, and service your product.
  • Those people who invest in your business.
  • Those people who open new opportunities by agreeing to partner with your business.
  • Those people who supply your business and decide if what you need arrives on-time and on-budget.
  • Those people who let you build your facilities in their community.
  • Those people who write about your business’s people, policies, and products.

We put people at the center of our thinking for one very good reason. They make things happen when they want to…and they throw a monkey wrench in the works when they don’t want to.

In today’s world, it’s not enough to sell good stuff. Your business needs to be made of good stuff.

It needs to recognize that people are changing the terms of engagement. It’s no longer a level playing field in which B2B companies can compete on the “what” of their business.

The winners are those B2B players who differentiate their business based on its “why.”

These winners make it obvious to anyone doing business with their company that they aim to matter more based not only on their technology, but also on their character.

The starting point is “who” – and when we talk about “who” we are talking about the people vital to your businesses success.

And what gets people pushing you toward your greater success is “why” you matter to them.

Your business matters when it has a “purpose beyond profit“; an idea that engages, motivates, and gratifies people in ways that matter to themselves, to society, and to the planet.

A purpose beyond profit is a sign that your business is a desirable part of the human race, not simply a machine designed to mercilessly extract cash from it.

Coupled with your technology, solutions, and offerings, this emotionally meaningful presence (made evident by the spirit, drive, and likeability of your people) makes great things happen.

Technology is great.

People are phenomenal!

Put them together – driven by the idea of “if it matters, it wins” – and you’re golden.

Emotive Brand is a San Francisco brand strategy firm.


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