Marketing is

A must-have

Even more than the rise of brand, the sudden switch to marketing with an emotional connection is turning expectations about B2B tech on its head.

Question 01

How important, if at all, do you feel the emotional (as opposed to the rational) side of your marketing is when thinking about future growth comparing 2021 to this year? (answers for net important)

Question 02

What, if anything, is/are the primary emotion(s) you try and evoke in your marketing?

Question 03

On a scale from being fully led by emotional connection and being fully led by rational insight, where would you rate your marketing?

Expert Perspective:

How can a marketer get started with emotion-led content?

Judy Wilks

International ABM and Executive Content Lead, Autodesk

You can be really creative in small ways. It’s about having the idea that turns a dry subject into something that elicits emotion from your reader.

It’s difficult to find the thing that gives your content a human connection. But it’s absolutely necessary. When you pick up the New York Times and it writes about technology, it always starts with a human story – so you know why it’s going to talk to you about that subject.

For instance, when we created a piece for construction executives, we tried to understand their frustrations with that industry: years without real visibility, low productivity, running over budget, having to do work again. We wanted to tap into those feelings, and offer some hope that it could be better.

Don’t forget, people buy from people. They don’t react as a CIO; they react as Joe Bloggs or whoever. And when your content manages to provoke an emotional response, you can absolutely see the difference.

“It’s difficult to find that thing that gives your content a human connection. But it’s absolutely necessary.”

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Chapter 04: Key Findings

Once, B2B tech marketing was assumed to be about making clear, rational arguments. People believed the slow, methodical buying process and group-based decision making meant emotional connection made no difference.

But now, that received wisdom has been turned on its head. Nine out of ten respondents said the emotional side of marketing is somewhat or extremely important to their future growth. And the bigger the company, the more emotion-led the marketers are.

To understand why, it’s worth looking at which emotions marketers try to evoke. 37% want to instil a sense of confidence and trust, followed by security and safety (31%), curiosity and interest (29%) and enjoyment and excitement (22%).

These positive emotions show marketers are understanding that, when a tech purchase can put a huge, even career-defining price tag on the line, buyers really do need to feel happy and comfortable with their decision.

That doesn’t mean rational insights have no place; after all, you still can’t tell a budget holder “I just like this one better”. Three quarters of marketers combine elements of emotional connection and rational insight together – giving the customer a good feeling about the purchase, as well as strong reasons to justify their choice.

9/10 of ten say the emotional side of their marketing is important for their future growth.

Marketing managers in £100m+ revenue enterprises were more likely to prioritise emotion than those with £99m or less.

75% include elements of emotional connection and rational insight together.