B2B Brand Architecture
Branding and building a brand personality is part of brand architecture. While this concept is more prevalent in business-to-consumer companies, there is still value for B2B organizations to build a brand. Although the relationship between B2B companies is different from B2C businesses, branding still plays a role in marketing your B2B company to new clients and enforcing the positive impression your current clients have of your company.
The brand architecture combines the whole of your line of goods or services and is a snapshot of your business for consumers. The brand architecture includes an integrated, cohesive impression of symbols, colors, names, and other visual elements that influence customers’ thought processes. A robust brand architecture taps into your customers’ mental perception of your business and allows them to conceptualize it in a concise view. Therefore, brand architecture is valuable for B2B businesses, not just B2C entities.
Branding helps bring your line of products or services into focus and present them clearly to your customer. B2B companies may still benefit from restructuring their brand architecture, helping them stand out from similar suppliers and deliver a cohesive message to new customers.
Is Branding Relevant for B2B Businesses?
Traditional views of B2B sales are that price is the driving factor in choosing one supplier over another. The relationship between sales reps and B2B buyers is essential and may even be more important than the brand itself. The decision-makers of B2B purchases aren’t affected by branding how consumers of B2C products are.
There is also the perception that B2B products don’t need to be reduced to a single tagline and that B2B customers don’t make decisions based on their strength or appeal.
However, branding may be just as important for B2B companies as for B2C. Buyers are still people and susceptible to making decisions based on their feelings, including subconsciously identifying with brands that connect with stored memories and images. By creating and nurturing the correct brand associations, B2B companies can create positive associations in the buyer’s mind even before the selling starts. The right brand can instill a sense to trust and a belief in the quality of the products or services.
What are the Benefits of a Strong B2B Brand?
A solid B2B brand helps your business stand out from the competition, even in niche categories. Your customers’ impression of your brand gives them an apparent reason to choose your company over similar ones, even if the price for other suppliers is lower.
Developing a predisposition for your brand over others can shorten the sales cycle, as there may be a more open willingness to try your brand. Positive branding and identification may allow you to sustain premium pricing by perceiving that your company provides added value beyond the price point.
The exemplary brand architecture also builds a positive feeling of trust with your employees and stakeholders – they know who you, as a company, are, and the branding reflects the company values. When you’re able to deliver on the promises that your branding makes, it creates a sense of trust that, in turn, can make your customers your biggest advocates, even to the point of referring business to you.
Brand-influenced emotional reactions impact purchaser decision-making, and companies with solid brands often enjoy the better financial performance. Strong brands generally perform better than weak ones, all other things being equal.
B2B Branding is Different Than B2C Branding
Because the sales cycle is longer with B2B businesses than with B2C, the branding of a B2B company should be less emotional and more about presenting the long-term value of how the B2B products can improve their customers’ businesses.
However, emotive branding still has value for B2B businesses, as it can help identify your purpose and goals and address your potential buyers. Unlike those of B2C companies, your buyers typically have more technical knowledge and insight into the value of your products for their company. Still, a strong brand goes beyond the technical specifications of your products and speaks more to who you are as a company.
Cohesive, strong B2B branding also reinforces the relationship between your sales team and the customer. Many B2B contracts may be built on relationships, and a savvy B2B owner can use branding to reinforce their relationships’ foundation.
Why is B2B Branding important?
Strong B2B brands invoke a sense of trust, reliability, and consistency. Your clients still look for providers that supply quality products and have the follow-up client services, such as timely delivery, availability of emergency orders, and consistent, reliable pricing.
B2B brand architecture allows you to position your company and define who you are, establishing your company as a leader in your field. Even in the B2B world, some companies stand out, explaining who they are and making their competition define themselves according to the leaders’ standards. Your brand may need to establish its position on sustainability, transparency in its processes, and even fair employment. Although your customers may opt for the lowest price, more and more companies are choosing to align themselves with suppliers that share their shared core values.
For example, a B2C company that brands itself as sustainable and eco-friendly will likely seek out suppliers that practice sustainability in creating their products. If your business uses sustainable methods, then incorporating this into your brand image can help attract customers who prefer to deal with sustainable companies, even if the price point is higher.
Do You Need B2B Branding For Your Company?
Building the correct brand identity for B2B companies may differ from B2C brand architecture. However, B2B entities can still benefit from robust and cohesive branding and establishing their values through their branding efforts.
Propr can help B2B companies create a unique brand and strategies to enhance their brand architecture. We help B2B businesses stand out and define themselves in the market, from web design to overall brand strategy. We can help you develop your brand identity and then use that identity to improve your position in your niche.
Contact us today for a consultation and discover your options.