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The Future of B2B Marketing: 5 Tips For a Human Approach

Founder of Orchid Agency
Marissa Lodato
February 1, 2024
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As marketers, we’ve spent our days marketing to two different categories, business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C). Today, human-to-human (H2H) marketing may be the best way to stand out.

As technology continues to evolve and customer expectations shift, a more human-centric approach to B2B marketing is emerging as a key strategy for success. In this blog, we'll explore the future of B2B marketing and share five tips to help you infuse a human touch into your marketing strategy. And don’t forget, we’re all human!

What is human-to-human (H2H) marketing? 

H2H marketing is a customer-centric approach that emphasizes genuine, personalized connections between businesses and their customers. In H2H marketing, companies recognize that behind every transaction and interaction, there are real people with emotions, desires, and unique needs. 

This approach focuses on creating authentic, transparent, and empathetic interactions that resonate with individuals on a personal level. It involves tailoring marketing efforts to cater to the preferences of specific customer segments, sharing compelling brand stories, and fostering two-way communication to build trust and emotional connections. 

H2H marketing prioritizes long-term relationships over one-off transactions, aiming to create loyal customers who become advocates for the brand, all while treating customers with respect and empathy, understanding their challenges, and delivering exceptional customer experiences.

Why is human-to-human marketing relevant? 

Human-to-human marketing is so important today because it addresses the reality that all business transactions ultimately involve people. In a world of digital interactions and automated processes, H2H marketing brings a personal touch back into the equation. It recognizes that customers are not data points but individuals with emotions, preferences, and a desire for authentic connections. By prioritizing personalization, authenticity, and empathy, H2H marketing creates a more meaningful and engaging customer experience, which can lead to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty. This, in turn, can result in increased customer retention, brand advocacy, and ultimately, greater business success.

H2H marketing can set businesses apart from their competitors in today's crowded marketplace. When customers feel seen, heard, and valued as individuals, they are more likely to choose a brand over its competitors. This not only benefits a company's bottom line but also fosters a positive reputation, as satisfied customers are more likely to spread the word about their positive experiences, amplifying a brand's reach and influence.

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How can my marketing strategy be more human?

1. Understand Your Audience

It all starts with understanding your audience on a deeper level. Gone are the days of one-size-fits-all messaging. Today's B2B buyers expect personalized experiences tailored to their unique needs and pain points. Start by creating detailed buyer personas, conducting market research, and segmenting your audience. This will help you to craft messaging that resonates and addresses the specific challenges your customers face.

2. Build Authentic Relationships

B2B marketing should no longer be solely transactional. Instead, focus on building authentic, long-lasting relationships with your customers. Nurture these relationships by actively engaging with your clients, beyond just the point of sale. Leverage technology to facilitate meaningful interactions, whether it's through personalized follow-up emails, webinars, or even virtual meetings. Genuine connections can lead to brand loyalty and word-of-mouth recommendations.

3. Create Meaningful Content

Content marketing has become a cornerstone of modern B2B marketing, but it's not just about churning out blog posts and whitepapers. To add a human touch, create content with a purpose. Focus on providing value and solving real problems for your audience. Incorporate storytelling into your content to make it relatable and engaging. Your content should align with your customers' needs and provide actionable insights.

4. Embrace Emotional Intelligence

In B2B marketing, it's easy to get caught up in the numbers, but emotions play a significant role in decision-making. Embrace emotional intelligence in your marketing efforts by recognizing the emotional aspects of B2B decisions. Show empathy in your communication, and tailor your messaging to resonate with the emotional triggers of your audience. This approach can make your brand more relatable and memorable.

5. Use Data-Driven Decision Making

While a human approach emphasizes empathy and personalization, it doesn't mean abandoning data and analytics. In fact, data is your secret weapon for delivering a more human-centered B2B marketing strategy. Use data analytics to track customer behavior, preferences, and engagement patterns. With this information, you can make informed decisions and continuously refine your marketing efforts to serve your audience better.

We’re all human.

The future of B2B marketing is undoubtedly shifting towards a more human approach. By understanding your audience, building authentic relationships, creating purposeful content, embracing emotional intelligence, and leveraging data-driven insights, you can stay at the forefront of this evolving landscape. As you implement these tips, remember that the heart of B2B marketing is about connecting with people, solving their problems, and building trust—a truly human-centric approach that will set you up for success in the years to come. Let us know if you have any questions.