Branding B2B | Important?

August 19, 2014

Many brands become a brand by chance rather than design. This article - "How B2B companies talk past their customers" - from McKinsey Quarterly underscores the current B2B branding landscape and it isn't pretty. The main difference between B2C branding and B2B branding is resources. B2C see branding as their key success driver. They understand the importance of creating the right perceptions with their targeted consumer. They know it is not a luxury, it is a neccessity. So of course they invest in their brand. They find the best talent and they let them do their job.

We believe brands must not only be designed but they must be firmly rooted in the key reasons people buy your products or service. By that we do not mean the features of your product that you think you need to promote in order for them to do business with you. We mean the real (emotional) reason people buy your product. What fundamental problem does it solve for them i.e. CREST = fewer cavities, MAYTAG = reliable, etc.

Many B2B brands are built for the convenience or wishes of management. Rather than being based on the key reason people buy their product they focus on what they think people are impressed by. So you end up with brands that 'earn' the position "Global" or some such management oriented thought. I doubt that many buyers buy their product because they perceive them to be "Global".

B2B companies do not consider branding as business critical. It is considered "a good thing to do" as most leading consumer brands appear to think it's important.

There are exceptions to every rule. And we invite you to treat your B2B brand design as business critical.

Derek A. Lackey

A serial entrepreneur with many failures and successes, Derek has spent 20 years in traditional advertising, along with the past 8 in digital marketing. His ability to fuse the two with fluidity and... »


Derek A. Lackey

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Robert H. Lane

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Effective Go to Market Strategies For Start Ups

9 out 10 start ups do not survive. One of the primary reasons is: their target audience does not know what the offer is and why they need it in their lives.

All too often a start up has a great idea, well executed. Then the challenge of clearly describing the offering in a way that connects and moves your audience to action. In this book Derek A. Lackey and Robert H.Lane address the key issues and help you think your way through this challenging stage. Many start ups find themselves having to do this several times due to pivots driven by the market feedback. This is a muscle every start up needs to build in order to be successful in this busy marketplace.