Building a strong brand is an essential component of every B2B strategy. Branding must be built and then consistently maintained through monitoring and nurturing to send out the right message. When a brand becomes stale, then it isn’t because there isn’t any more value left to it. Sometimes a message must be updated so that it can stay relevant. Knowing what a B2B segment needs from a value standpoint can help to create a message that resonates.
Your brand drives goodwill. Goodwill drives profits. Just look at Proctor and Gamble – 40% of their value comes from what their customers think about them. That’s why having a B2B branding strategy is so important.
1. You Need a Solid Product To Provide
If someone purchases a bottle of shampoo and doesn’t like it, then they can just go purchase another bottle for less than $1 in some instances. The same isn’t necessarily true if you’re purchasing a 2 ton copper drum. Your earnings are going to be based on the quality of the product that you provide. If your branding doesn’t speak of quality, then you’re not going to be receiving B2B prospects on a regular basis.
It really is that simple. Strong brands regularly outperform mid-level brands by about 20%. People see an established brand as a problem-solver. If your B2B presence has this reputation to it because of the quality of your product or service, then that value is enhanced and it reaches out to more people. You’ll still get business with a weaker brand presence, but it won’t be as much as your competition gets.
2. It’s Not Just About the Price
In the B2C world, price is a driving factor for many purchasing decisions. In the B2B world, however, it’s about the reputation of the vendor more than anything else. Businesses want to do business with others who can make their lives easier and their budgets better. The reputation of the brand is what will drive that sale home.
To build up a brand means to build up the value of that brand in every area. Customer service is as important as the quality of the product or service being provided. Your B2B leads don’t care as much about how socially responsible you are compared to how honest you are. Being sustainable is good, but having transparent access across the supply chain is better. Global reach is nice to have, but being a local expert in your industry will always bring a brand value premium with it.
3. Consistency Is the #1 Priority
Building a B2B brand strategy means taking an individualized approach, but one that is consistent with the brand’s message every single time. Telling leads what they want to hear might lead to some short-term sales increases, but it is naïve to think that your leads aren’t speaking with each other. Eventually the conflicting messages will come out. When that happens, your B2B leads aren’t going to confront you.
They’re going to speak with their money. Namely you won’t have any more of it.
Consistency throughout the entire brand means that every team, from customer service to sales, is speaking the same message. Without consistency, nothing gets built. Your branding becomes a building with a foundation that has sand underneath it.
4. Improving a Brand Is Simple
Consistent messaging helps to create interest. Consistent value in a brand’s products or services provides ongoing interest. The ability to communicate the ability of a brand to solve specific problems is worth more than any other cost a business might have. B2B branding means saving money, saving time, and then making money.
Unfortunately this one point gets missed a lot. Prospects engage and the brand misses this, creating a negative feeling. The identity of the brand becomes complicated so that people don’t feel like they can relate to it. Without this, there is no inspiration to be found and therefore no value associated with the brand. It becomes dead without consistency.
Once consistency is established, the modern B2B lead expects innovation. New ideas always promote curiosity, but sometimes the best brand strategy is to invest into the innovation that others are experiencing. Serving others through a brand in some way leaves a legacy that will always be noticed. Your brand doesn’t have to drill wells in Africa or cure ebola to get noticed. Something as simple as helping a local family in need have the groceries they need to get through a week creates a brand legacy.
B2B branding strategies aren’t complicated. Create something that is valuable. Consistently talk about it. Serve others when you can. Be honest about what you can do. That’s how your brand can create more value for your business over time.