B2B Marketing 101: Target Humans, Not Buildings or Logos

March 9, 2020

By Chris Franks

Does it seem like more and more advertising campaigns are targeted to buildings and logos rather than actual people? Traditional B2B marketing practices place a bizarre emphasis on designing solutions for either a brand’s image or a corporate logo. After all, has the Nike Swoosh ever jumped off the side of an athletic shoe and made a purchase on its own? What about the golden arches of McDonald’s?

A yes, now I see, the The resemblance is uncanny!

It’s easy to get caught up in branding madness, but the truth is that the people behind those brands are the ones with the purchasing power, not the logos themselves. This is where the notion of persona creation came up and is something that needs to be at the forefront of all B2B Marketing strategies.

Today’s B2B Marketing

In today’s B2C marketing practices has its own issues. These efforts don’t necessarily target inanimate objects, but they seem to turn marketing into some sort of unwieldy math problem. Somewhere along the early stages of the technological revolution, marketing to consumers has become all about data. What are the conversion rates? How about the retention rates? Solve the Collatz conjecture (supposedly, the world’s hardest unsolved math problem).

An unfortunate tendency for today’s tech savvy marketers is to continuously make mountains out of molehills.

By plugging in an overload of data, somehow 2+2≠4 anymore. Don’t get us wrong, we’re not saying that data doesn’t matter because it definitely does; it matters a lot in fact. We are, however, saying to be careful not to look overlook the obvious when marketing to businesses or consumers.

What both schools of thought seem to forget is that B2B and B2C marketing have one frighteningly simple and shockingly impactful common denominator… people… D’uh!

Think Human

Forget what it means to market in a B2B environment. The Nike swoosh and the McDonald’s golden arches don’t make purchases, but the people behind them do. We also think it’s time to stop overanalyzing the data of B2C advertising. Data provides useful insight for sure, but it doesn’t always do a great job of reading between the lines. For a good comparison, think about the most data-driven game of all—baseball. The sheer numbers tell us that Derek Jeter only hit more than 20 home runs twice in his career. He also struck out over 100 times in a season quite often. Does that mean he wasn’t a great baseball player? Absolutely not! That’s why he will be giving his hall of fame induction speech on July 26 this year.

Whether you’re tasked with advertising to businesses or consumers, it’s absolutely essential to remember that you still need to appeal to the actual person buying the part, product, or service.

Instead of separating B2B and B2C, find the common ground and think B2H (Business to Humans)! Being human, thinking human, and appealing to humans is what should be in your targeted marketing efforts. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling machine parts to a manufacturer or bubble gum to a ten-year-old, you’re still targeting a human being! It’s that simple.

One Size Does Not Fit All

The commonality between B2B and B2C marketing efforts should not be misinterpreted as a one size fits all strategy, however. It just means that it can be natural to get caught up in larger than life branding and popsicle-headache-inducing number crunching. Embracing your humanity should be the first step in your modern marketing approach.

After that, today’s B2H marketing should remember that everyone is different. That uniqueness in each of our DNA is what makes the world so special, vibrant, and downright wonderfully quirky and entertaining. With that in mind, remember to customize marketing solutions in the B2H environment. Every business is different and so is every consumer. Therefore, today’s marketing efforts should be based on provided customized solutions to… humans! Once again, it’s THAT simple folks.

If you’re looking for a team of creative, inspired, and somewhat obsessed marketing maniacs, Contact us to learn how we can customize results-driven solutions to your humans with B2B Marketing today!