McKinsey research says a surprising gap has opened up between the brand messages B2B companies communicate and what their customers really want to know.

In the report titled “How B2B companies talk past their customers”, McKinsey says there is a marked divergence between core corporate messaging about companies’ brands and the characteristics customers value most.

Themes such as social responsibility, sustainability and global reach, which appear prominently in many companies’ brand imaging efforts, appear to have little influence on buyers.

The inverse is true as well.

The issues that resonated most strongly with customers _ effective supply chain management and specialist market knowledge _ were among the least mentioned themes by B2B brands.

Customers ranked “honest and open dialogue” as the most important brand attribute, yet it not mentioned by the 90 companies McKinsey surveyed.

McKinsey say that among these companies there was surprising familiarity among their brand themes, indicating a tendency to follow the proverbial herd.

To address these deficiencies, three core questions are recommended:

  • Are we telling the same story as are competitors?
  • What is our sales force saying? Is our offer genuinely differentiated?
  • Do we deliver our brand consistently?

Close the messaging gap and recapture relevance.

A strategic marketing executive with extensive experience delivering business results for Ansell Healthcare, Mercedes-Benz, consultancies and organisations in Australia, Asia and Europe. Leading-edge skills built around the fundamental principle that, in an era of rapid product and service commoditization, the customer experience matters and is a key driver of competitive advantage. Fully cognizant of the need to synchronize processes, business technology and people to ensure that brand promises are mirrored by reinforcing brand actions. Thrives in “can do”, values-driven organisations which are committed to consumer-focused innovation and making a difference by thinking strategically but acting pragmatically. An accomplished, collaborative business leader and communicator with excellent interpersonal and public speaking capabilities. Key strengths: • Building influence across the business • Harnessing emerging customer trends • Thriving on market and technology change • Differentiating the brand experience • Optimizing the marketing and media mix • Creating and nurturing high-performance teams and relationships Specialties Assets and transferable skills include leadership, strategy development, project management, technology utilization, business process improvement, performance metrics and public speaking. Email: mitchell_mackey@hotmail.com

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