“High-quality”, “Best service”, “Leading company”…if your marketplace is B2B you’ve encountered, or possibly you’ve even used, these words. Your website and brochure may be littered with them.
“Of course, that’s standard in our marketplace”, says the B2B marketer in you. Standard doesn’t mean great. In this case, it doesn’t mean anything close to that. Unless you want your company’s products and services to get lost in a fog of competition, it’s time you employ a powerful marketing approach.
Only the most astute B2B marketers are using this. As a result they are enjoying more engaged prospects, a pipeline full of leads, and growing sales.
What is this marketing secret? It’s simple, empathy.
“I don’t know how else to put this: nobody gives a shit about you. Your software or service or widget may be the center of your world, but the people you’re selling to have better things to think about,” writes Doug Kessler.
Using empathy in your marketing involves shifting your focus from you and your company, to prospective clients.
- What are their challenges?
- What are their fears?
- What keeps them up at night?
- What demands and expectations are placed on them that you can help relieve?
When you understand the true problem your prospective buyer faces, then, and only then, should you tell them how your solution will help.
Remember, your marketing isn’t about your company, and it’s certainly not about you.
To help ensure your marketing is focused on your prospective buyer and is empathetic with their situation, use the following as a guide:
Buyer Persona – Mike Gospe suggests you paint a picture of your buyer. Who are they? What do they value? What are their expectations and problems? What do they read? Which conferences do they attend? You get the idea, right? You’ve done a good job on this when you can close your eyes and envision what your buyer looks like and what kind of conversation you’ll have with them.
Value Proposition – Also called a USP or competitive advantage. What makes your offerings different? Don’t jump back to meaningless words like ‘fastest’, ‘best’, ‘high-quality’. Give thought to what really makes your company stand out from others in the marketplace and why the buyer should choose you over others. Make sure you’re thinking about this through your buyer’s eyes.
Prove It – Most marketers make all kinds of claims about how great their product or service is. The problem, however, is they forget to back those claims up with proof. Once you’ve got your buyers attention, you need to position your company as a credible authority in the marketplace. Once you’ve done this, you won’t only have the buyer’s attention; you’ll also have their trust.
Put empathy to work. Your marketing and business will benefit as a result.
About the author
Michael Zipursky is an author, consultant and co-founder of Business Consulting Buzz, a blog on becoming a consultant and landing more clients. His work has been featured in FOX Business, Financial Times, HR Executive, Institute of Management Consultants, and several other publications.