Blog Post

Branding and MArketing induring crisies

Dear B2B, the best product is not the winning one.

How marketers are obsessed with the wrong thing.
Apr 10th, 2024
2 min read
IntroBrand Acquisitions = Brand DilutionAdaptation to Market ChangesLack of Brand PositioningUser-Centric Design and ExperienceInternal Competition
Let's imagine Nike advertising like the average B2B company:
“87% of barefoot runners say Nike solves their problems”.
“Nike offers an extra 3cm of sole in its shoes”.
This will never happen.Never, ever, ever.That's because Nike knows that competitor features are almost identical, or at least not different enough to be the purchase-driving decision.

Sounds familiar?

Then why this is a concept that most B2B brands fail to understand:
The best product is not the winning one.
Just like most running shoes or active wear offer the same features, the same goes for all-in-one software products, business automation, cloud solutions, accounting tools or almost any B2B product.

That's why you'll never see Nike boasting about the rubber in their running shoe soles, windproof materials, or any other specific product feature.

They understand that some battles are not worth fighting.

Instead, their focus is on evoking emotion and inspiring people to go out and, “Just Do It.”

The B2B Institute at LinkedIn calls this ‘The Product Delusion.

The delusion that your B2B product is way superior to all others, and even more importantly, than customer care.
This is where the magic of brand comes into play:

Branding isn't a strategy reserved to B2C brands with cool Instagrammable products. In fact, one could argue that average products in a competitive landscape require even more branding to be top-of-mind before any other competitor.
Even in B2B, we buy perception, we buy emotions.Let's not forget that 95% of human purchases are made by the emotional side of the brain, and only after justified with the logical part.

Even in B2B.Herbert A. Simon's concept of "Satisfying" describes how people often settle for 'good enough' rather than seeking the perfect choice, especially in complex decisions.

This is evident in B2B decision-making where buyers tend to stick with familiar brands rather than exploring every option.

Familiar in this context means brands that are top-of-mind in a moment of need.

This highlights the power of simple, memorable brand narratives in any market, B2B or B2C.

Rather than striving for product perfection, marketers should focus on making their brand easily memorable. Cognitive ease, delivered through stories, characters, and slogans, are all key to making a brand sticky in our brains.
In summary, Nike's marketing success offers a valuable lesson for B2B marketers: focus on building a strong, memorable brand, as it is often the most familiar brand and not necessarily the superior product that wins the brains.

By embracing the art of strategic branding and fostering emotional engagement, B2B brands can catapult themselves to the forefront of their industries.

A good product with a great brand is the way forward.