It’s no secret that feelings and emotions influence consumers’ buying behavior. In fact, research shows that our emotional response to advertising has two to three times more influence on purchase intent than the content of the ad.
That’s why brands pay billions of dollars each year on commercials and print ads aimed at tugging your heart strings, making you laugh, or otherwise hitting you right in the feels.
But it’s not only casual shoppers making decisions about razors, sports apparel and cell phone providers who let their emotions control their purse strings.
That’s right. B2B buyers have feelings, too.
And the feelings brought to the B2B buying table aren’t all that different from those brought to the kitchen table. According to a recent survey of decision makers conducted by B2B International, final B2B purchasing decisions are affected primarily by these four emotions:
This shouldn’t be that surprising given what we know about B2B buying: it often entails substantial investment, a larger group of decision makers, and a longer period of time. B2B buyers want to believe in the seller, their product, and the product’s abilities—and they want to look good for choosing the right company with which to do business.
So how can B2B sellers use this information (for good, of course) to market their products?
It helps if you have an authentic brand story to start with. Consistency and authenticity go a long way toward meeting the emotional needs of a B2B buyer. Beyond that, B2B International suggests the following for eliciting these emotions throughout the buying cycle:
- Demonstrate your expertise and your reliability
- Deliver a satisfying customer experience
- Build a connection through engaging, targeted content
At the end of the day, the people who make B2B buying decisions are just that—people. And as Dale Carnegie said, “When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion.”