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News & Views

  1. Tapping into emotions in the B2B buying process

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    Shock!  B2B buyers are people.  Seems obvious, right?  Yet marketers often treat B2B buyers as automatons making careful, logical and completely rational decisions during the buying process.  That’s simply not the case as B2B buyers are influenced by their emotions too.

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  2. Lessons from the 2017 Business Superbrands

    By David Willan -

    Interesting results from TCBA/Superbrands in their latest ranking of the UK’s top 20 Business Superbrands. Congrats to British Airways for winning top spot for the third year running!

    The rankings illustrate a few important lessons about B2B branding in the modern day.

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  3. What is the B2B buying process?

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    The B2B buying process  is complex and typically involves five broad steps – ‘recall’, ‘identify’, ‘learn’, ‘evaluate’ and ‘buy’.

    Mapping out the exact buying process is critical for anyone looking to market or sell in business-to-business (B2B) environments.  Armed with this understanding you’ll be able to target the right people, at the right time, in the right way.  Different scenarios will of course see a different buying process, but a recent survey of 118 B2B buyers by Circle Research reveals that there are similarities in the buying process across many B2B markets.

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  4. Secrets of the fastest growing B2B marketing agencies

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    B2B marketing agencies are in rude health.  The B2B Agencies Benchmarking Report reveals that 62% of agency leaders (we spoke to 75 of them from the UK’s leading players) describe their commercial performance in 2016 as ‘good’ and a further 26% report that it was ‘strong’.  Their financial numbers reflect this confidence.  85% of agencies have grown revenues year-on-year, with an average increase in Gross Income of 9% and an average rise of 31% in Net Profit.  To fuel this, the number of people employed by agencies has jumped by 19% year-on-year.

    But some agencies out-perform even these healthy benchmarks.  What’s their secret?

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  5. B2B marketing agencies optimistic about BREXIT

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    I’ve been rummaging around the data underpinning this year’s B2B Agencies Benchmarking Report and was pleased to see how healthy the agency community is.

    Ask agency leaders (we spoke to 75 of them from the UK’s leading players) about their commercial performance in 2016 and the response is overwhelmingly positive.  62% describe it as ‘good’ and a further 26% report that it was ‘strong’.  Their financial numbers reflect this confidence.  85% of agencies have grown revenues year-on-year, with an average increase in Gross Income of 9% and an average rise of 31% in Net Profit.  To fuel this, the number of people employed by agencies has jumped by 19% year-on-year.

    Things might be rosy just now, but is BREXIT about to disrupt the agency world?

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  6. Business-to-business (B2B) pricing strategy research – part 2

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    Last week I discussed two research techniques which can be used when determining the optimum pricing strategy – Gabor-Granger and Brand Price Trade Off (BPTO).  These techniques are beautifully simple, but this simplicity has a flip side.

    • The choice may be over-simplified and no longer reflect real-life decision scenarios which can be complex and based on a series of conscious and unconscious trade-offs
    • With the linear raising or lowering of prices, respondents can easily guess what the researcher is doing and may be tempted to ‘game’ the result
    • Prompting respondents with an initial price point will frame their subsequent responses and thus under- or over-estimate the true price they’d be willing to pay
    • Only allowing a binary ‘would buy/wouldn’t buy’ response doesn’t capture important shades in between where people start to become more or less comfortable with a particular price point

    This week, I’ll look at two pricing research techniques which can overcome these issues – the Van Westendorp Price Sensitivity Meter and Conjoint Analysis.

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  7. Business-to-business (B2B) pricing strategy research – part 1

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    When developing the optimum pricing strategy in business-to-business (B2B) markets, it’s essential to have insights into how the market is likely to react when a product or service is sold at different price points.  That’s where market research comes in.  It informs pricing strategy by revealing likely levels of demand, revenue and profitability under different pricing scenarios.

    There are four main techniques used in pricing research and I’ll explore them all in this and my next blog post (all in plain English, with real-life examples you’ll be pleased to hear).  This week I take a look at the Gabor-Granger and Brand Price Trade Off (BPTO) techniques.

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  8. Brand mapping – Correspondence Analysis explained

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    Which attributes most closely define your brand?  Which other brands are challenging you for this space?  How differentiated is your brand and where might there be white space?

    These are all critical questions for a marketer or indeed anyone managing a brand, but answering them isn’t always straightforward, as the following example illustrates.  It’s from a real-life study of how buyers of corporate IT systems perceive different vendor brands.

    In this survey we asked buyers whether they associated our client’s brand and thirteen competitors with ten attributes which previous qualitative research had identified as important in this market.  For each attribute, their answer could either be that they did associate the brand with it, or they didn’t. Continue reading

  9. Understanding brand personality through projective techniques

    By Graeme Cade -

    Most brands have a set of human traits associated with them – a brand personality.   In B2B markets brand personality is an especially important concept as ‘corporate fit’ is often an important consideration for B2B buyers – “are these people on my wavelength and can I see myself working with them?”

    You can shape your corporate brand personality through marketing communications and, most importantly, by developing an appropriate corporate culture. But to do that effectively, you first need to understand what kind of brand personality appeals to buyers and how your brand is perceived in relation to this.

    That’s not straightforward. Continue reading

  10. Branding terminology and jargon explained

    By Beth Pearson -

    Jargon abounds in the discipline of branding, and the plethora of terms in use coupled with the sometimes nuanced differences between them can have undesirable side effects.  Sometimes the jargon undermines the user, making them seem pretentious or detached from the hard-nosed world of commerce.  And other times conversations will become increasingly confused as terms are used interchangeably or different meanings attached to the same words by different people. Continue reading