Real-World Education for Modern Marketers

Join Over 600,000 Marketing Professionals

Start here!
Text:  A A

How Emotional Marketing in B2B Drives Customers (Even If You Think It Doesn't)

by Tamar Weiss  |  
January 31, 2018

In the world of marketing, there's a misperception that B2B marketing is serious and logical and that B2C marketing is fun and creative.

Though B2B marketers may need a deeper understanding of technology and they may have more limits placed on their creativity, the role emotions play in both B2B and B2C marketing is strikingly similar.

As neuroanatomist Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor puts it, "Most of us think of ourselves as thinking creatures that feel, but we are actually feeling creatures that think”.

To gain a clearer understanding of the concept, I interviewed Jonathan Kahn, co-founder and creative marketing hacker at creative agency JM Consulting, and Michal Zarankin, head of digital marketing at in-app engagement platform Insert (recently acquired by Pendo), to learn their thoughts on the role of emotions in B2B marketing.

Here are a few of the insights they shared with me.

1. Overall, the role of emotions in both B2C and B2B marketing is the same

It all boils down to the idea that in both, the end-user is a human being, and in the end all human beings are emotionally driven, whether they're a CEO, marketing assistant, or developer (yes, they have emotions too!).

As Jonathan explained it: "It's funny that I have to prove this to people. It's very simple when you think about it. If we didn't do anything via emotion, if we did everything just based on logic—if for whatever reason, we all had the same amount of logic—we wouldn't be living, we wouldn't get married, we wouldn't have kids, because what's the point of all of that? It's a risk. Logic proves that. But all the things that we admire are all done by people who ignored logic and went with their gut, went with their emotions. B2B is the same. In the end, an organization is run by people. Both right and wrong decisions are based on emotion."

Sign up for free to read the full article.Read the Full Article

Membership is required to access the full version of this how-to marketing article ... don't worry though, it's FREE!


We will never sell or rent your email address to anyone. We value your privacy. (We hate spam as much as you do.) See our privacy policy.

Sign in with one of your preferred accounts below:


Tamar Weiss increases awareness and growth for B2B companies through customer-focused content. She is a consultant at a range of startups and large international companies. Previously, she was the content marketing specialist at retention-automation company Optimove and at Insightera, a Marketo company.

LinkedIn: Tamar Weiss

Rate this  

Overall rating

  • Not rated yet.

Add a Comment


  • by William Carrier Wed Jan 31, 2018 via web

    Tamar, good points but your example of Slack is limiting. There are far fewer B2B services examples than product examples. From a branding perspective, their is a much bigger elephant in the room. Brands in the B2B product space have blown-up whatever brand equity they have built as a result of selling their products on Amazon.

    Distributors like Grainger have talked about the problem of "price transparency". What that means is that customers are going to Amazon with a brand name and part number and finding much lower prices. Great for customers to be sure. Not good for traditional brands.

    So what are the consequences to brands and why does it matter?

    Distributors like Grainger, MSC, Fastenal, and Staples are ALL aggressively moving to private label goods that are difficult to "shop" for price. On top of that, Grainger is increasingly removing the brand names from products on their website over the last year and labeling them "Grainger Approved Vendor".

    Brands are now being forced to justify the price premium for their products. This isn't new to manufacturers but now their is a robust ecosystem of private label products in every category. Frankly, the quality I've seen of many of the private label items is equal to or better than the quality of national brands like Rubbermaid, 3M, Stanley, etc. Mobile shopping led to price transparency which intern is leading to "Brand Opacity".

    This is the biggest threat to brands in the B2B marketing today. Customers going to Amazon have shown the elasticity of demand relative to pricing. Now more than ever, B2B brands need to justify the price premium for their product lines or face declining market share and margin erosion.

  • by Becky Tue Feb 20, 2018 via web

    William (below) makes a compelling point, but I still think branding prevails at least for now. I am not justifying that their prices should be higher, but branding is a very important component to the business's message and strategic mission and straying from it is so confusing as to lead customers away. I think Tamar is right on point with always erring on the side of being positive in our messaging. We can talk about difficult or serious things while in the context of kindness, pro-activity, and positivity. That does much more for a brand in attracting higher quality, more loyal clients than anything else.

MarketingProfs uses single
sign-on with Facebook, Twitter, Google and others to make subscribing and signing in easier for you. That's it, and nothing more! Rest assured that MarketingProfs: Your data is secure with MarketingProfs SocialSafe!