How to Help B2B Prospects Convince Colleagues

A B2B client called me recently and shared this frustration:

“A senior executive was very interested in working with us, and his company would be a great fit for our product. But after he met with his C-suite colleagues, he called me to say they weren’t interested in meeting with me.”

What I said to my client:

“Your problem is that your brand isn’t portable. After you communicate it to a prospect, that person can’t pick it up, take it with them, and communicate it to someone else.”

Fact of life: You are not the only one to communicate your brand story to prospective customers. In a B2B setting, you depend on many other people to communicate your story, and it’s most likely they won’t communicate it as well as you can.

When you speak about your brand to a customer, you need to persuade this customer that they should do business with you, and you need the customer to have such a clear impression about you that they can easily communicate it to other people in their company. Your brand must be portable.

4 Steps to a Portable Brand

As you craft the brand messaging you want to communicate in your sales process, think about what your customer will hear, and determine what you want them to say after they’ve heard it.

To accomplish these two goals, consider the following four points:

  1. Who are the other decision makers and decision influencers your customer contact needs to persuade?
  2. What do you need those decision makers/influencers to do? For example, do you need them to agree to do business with you, or only to agree to meet with you? The simpler the action, the better.
  3. What message will influence those decision makers/influencers to take those actions?
  4. How can you help your customer understand, believe in and carry that “portable” message?

If you let these four points guide you, you will be able to create a portable brand that prospects will be able to communicate within their company. If you sell B2B, these guidelines will help you close more business and create lasting, profitable client relationships.

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