The magic of B2B storytelling in marketing

In the modern world, impactful brand storytelling is about how to look your audience in the eye, digitally.

– Amelia Veale

When marketers seek to develop a deeper connection with their audience, whether to inspire, educate or influence them, they can tap into a fundamental aspect of being human, our love of stories.

Storytelling when done correctly has a profound effect on human emotions. Having a deeper understanding of these emotions and motivations allows companies to lay down their brand’s narrative helping them find common ground with their audience.

B2B brands have long had the problem of how to connect with their target buyers (decision-makers) at other companies. Knowing that these buyers are affected by and base some of their decisions on emotions like all humans, means connecting with them emotionally has a big impact on the success of building trust, forming relationships, and ultimately doing business with them.

The power of stories to create connections between people and ideas, to convey history and values is something world leaders have been doing for a long time to motivate people to take a certain action. When used by industrial companies and B2B’s it can help shift marketing efforts from salesy pitches and boring prospects with endless features and figures to captivating their attention and helping them create a connection to your business. Here’s how.

Stories can be used to highlight and address challenges that clients experience. By using storytelling to show customers that you understand their needs and concerns around a specific problem, or even one they were unaware of, helps them assess whether you are the right partner to solve their pain points.

Humanize your business through stories. Getting an audience to relate to your brand story can be difficult, by humanizing your business it breaks down the abstract side of the business. Humanizing your brand makes it real for your audience. B2B’s can do this by sharing stories about their own failures and successes, show off the people behind the scenes by giving employee’s a voice, showing gratitude, and being transparent.

Utilise case studies and customer success stories. This is a great storytelling technique because it is instantly relatable as a real-world example of success. Why are case studies so effective? It allows you to tell a story without being self-serving, highlights your expertise and the value your brand offers.

Let customers tell the story for you. By using customer testimonials in their marketing brands can leverage the powerful psychological effect a satisfied customer creates by helping build trust and credibility. Testimonial stories provide assurance about the quality and value of the service they received, one of the most important aspects of the buying decision making process.

Storytelling helps breath life into any type of business, and what business doesn’t want to drive connections and engagement in a truly human way.

Is your business using social media’s full potential?

At Brieffin we use our expertise to unlock everything social media has to offer your business or personal brand. We use our experience in content creation, strategy and planning, and social media management to help build consistency and deliver marketing success. Let’s talk.

Our Moment of Bliss

Coastline by Hollow Coves to get you into the storytelling mood. More to listen to on our Spotify Playlist.

Are B2B Brands and TikTok a good fit?

Once you begin looking at it from a branding lens, the marketing possibilities are almost endless.

– Lucy Rendler Kaplan

2020 saw TikTok reaching an astronomical 2 billion downloads, catapulting the app to a global audience status. 2020 however, also saw the pandemic reducing the planet to an almost global lockdown. With it came an increased focus on the use of social media as an effective marketing tool.

So how did an app launched in 2016 for the Chinese market find itself being mentioned in the same breath as the other major social media players like Facebook and Instagram?

The platform designed for mobile devices supports short format video content (think Instagram stories) has become extremely popular with Gen- Z users, with around 65% of the user base falling between 13-24 years old.

What separates TikTok from other platforms is the emphasis the algorithm places on new content. When new content starts to gain engagement, it can quickly spread and in some cases goes viral, even if the account has little to no followers. But it’s not all just lip-syncing and dance challenges, education content has become popular on the platform with users sharing life-hacks and quick tutorials.

The question for B2B brands is whether the time is right to embrace TikTok.  

Looking at the current demographics of the platform it would seem that it’s more suited to B2C brands looking to reach new audiences. Understandably many B2B brands are hesitant to invest in a platform that doesn’t directly target the decision-makers of their specific target groups. But for forward-thinking companies, the lack of competition may become a competitive advantage when the platform’s demographics start to shift to an older audience.

To answer the above question there are a few things B2B’s need to consider. Such as is your brand open to and does it have the capabilities to create unique and experimental video content, and does such a strategy match your brand’s image. Current TikTok strategies are primarily for brand awareness and reach rather than short term leads and sales.

The platform itself is also experimenting with its advertising model and will have to evolve beyond short videos if it wants to keep the attention of its users in the future. For B2B marketers keeping an eye on the platform is a good idea even if now is not the right time to jump on board.

Is your business using social media’s full potential?

At Brieffin we use our expertise to unlock everything social media has to offer your business or personal brand. We use our experience in content creation, strategy and planning, and social media management to help build consistency and deliver marketing success. Let’s talk.

Our Moment of Bliss

Something to get creative to, Breathe by Telepopmusik. More to listen to on our Spotify Playlist.

Why B2B companies need to be on Instagram

81% of people use Instagram to help research products and services

– Instagram business statistics

Facebook is still undoubtedly at the top of the social media pyramid with more than 2.7 billion monthly active users. Together with LinkedIn, Facebook has become an integral part of most social media marketing strategies for industrial companies and B2Bs.

It’s easy to forget that Facebook owns four of the six social media platforms that boast over 1 billion users. One of these being Instagram which has around 1.2 billion monthly active users.

While Instagram initially started as a social network to share photos with friends and family, it has quickly evolved into a platform that allows brands to blur the lines between the personal (human) and professional sides of their business.

Unlike LinkedIn which is focused on professional networking and career development, Instagram is a mashup of pretty much everything; from travel to fashion and food. So why should industrial companies and B2Bs, in general, consider including Instagram in their organic marketing efforts?

While paid advertising has its place for targeting specific ‘short-term’ business objectives, organic posts have a more long-term effect on customer and prospective employee perceptions.

Though not impossible it’s becoming more difficult to reach users with organic content on Facebook and LinkedIn, this is where Instagram offers the biggest opportunity for B2B businesses.

Instagram is a great platform for building brand awareness, community, establishing credibility, and driving engagement all organically. Using a mix of user-generated content, behind the scenes insights, and appropriate hashtags B2Bs can achieve organic reach in ways they can’t on other platforms.

Because Instagram is essentially a visual search engine, brands can get creative with how they design and share visual content through curated posts, videos, carousels, and stories. It’s through these different types of content that B2B brands can connect with audiences on a more human level and showcase their values and personality.

Why is this type of organic reach such a big deal when paid advertising can generate a return on investment ‘fairly quickly’?

When done well a good organic social media strategy on Instagram can act as a place where potential customers, media members, and prospective employees can research, learn and directly engage with brands. More than that it directly impacts search engine results and lets you promote your products and services without being too direct.

Organic social media should be viewed as a long-term strategy that helps you connect with followers, and Instagram is just the platform to do it on.

Is your business using social media’s full potential?

At Brieffin we use our expertise to unlock everything social media has to offer your business or personal brand. We use our experience in content creation, strategy and planning, and social media management to help build consistency and deliver marketing success. Let’s talk.

Our Moment of Bliss

Live Well by Palace, sit back and relax. More to listen to on our Spotify Playlist.