B2B Brands All Look The Same…

Posted on October 29, 2015 by Lauren Greatorex

World class! Best of breed! Leading! Solutions-focused! Customer-centric! Data-driven! Visionary! Next-gen! Plug-and-Play! Results-oriented! Value-add!

You get the idea… It may be true but it ain’t half boring…

B2B businesses are filled with some of the smartest people on the planet and yet everyone makes the same superior claims about their products and services.

As B2B marketers, we need to stop falling into this trap. Outside of The Apprentice, people don’t buy stuff based on claims made about being ‘truly global’, ‘customer centric’ or ‘solutions-focused’ alone. And there is little that differentiates the products and services we sell.

We need to wake up and realise that our businesses are jam-packed with IP, knowledge and insight. And it’s the collective thinking of our experts that makes the business distinctive.

But that probably won’t come as a shock to you. In fact, 90% of B2B marketers already believe that their company needs to differentiate from competitors based on thinking and ideas.

As an industry, we get it. We already know that great thinking is in demand. We know that most senior business leaders (the guys & gals with all the bucks) will only trade their time and attention for knowledge and new insight. That’s why we created this guide for creating ideas that sell.

Now is the time to put our ideas where our mouth is… or something like that...

IBM understood that (frankly baffling) statement when it created Smarter Planet, the ultimate Big Idea that transcended its complex products and came to define ‘thought leadership’. Yet, even that’s set for a refresh, replaced by Cognitive Business.

This new brand strategy moves on from the idea that the planet is connected by technology - that’s, like, so last decade! Instead, it’s focused on artificial intelligence and big data analytics with the help of Watson, IBM’s walking (not quite), talking, self-teaching, decision-making, cognitive computing system.

It just goes to show that you can never stop thinking, but you certainly don’t have to be a giant technology firm (or a robot) to create commercially-effective marketing ideas.

This post is part of Man Bites Dog’s ‘No Idea?’ blog series on creating marketing campaign ideas that sell.


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