Rob Peters
March 17, 2015

Social Selling: Find A Way To Their Heart​

I was enjoying the warmer weather in Chicago this past weekend and was listening to “Find A To My Heart” by Phil Collins and these lyrics resonated in how I build trust and relationships with my prospects, clients, and all my friends on social media.


Effective B2B Social Selling must appeal to the buyer with more than teh cold logic of features, functions, and outcomes. The successful social seller engages buyers with emotion and heart on social media through storytelling.

How Emotion Influences B2B BuyingRP2

The Corporate Executive Board (CEB) in association with Google gathered insight into what leading social selling teams are doing to connect with their customers emotionally and to demonstrate personal value.

From Promotion to Emotion: Connecting B2B Customers to Brands studied 3,000 B2B buyers, marketers, academics, thought leaders and consultants across seven B2B industries and provides compelling insights on how B2B buyers behave to emotional social selling compared to a more logical approach.

The following findings can help today’s B2B companies adapt their communications and brand strategies to speak to clients on a deeper, more personal level.

Emotion More Powerful Than Function

The study found that when B2B social sellers connect with buyers through an emotional approach,they achieve two times the impact than when selling business or functional value.

Connecting at an emotional level with the B2B buyer emotionally requires greater understanding of perceptions and feelings than just understanding business objectives and requirements. Through open-ended questioning and observation of non-verbal cues, B2B marketers can reveal the personal requirements of an individual. This is strategic knowledge when it comes to developing messages that resonate to a specific buyer’s requirements, pains, and annoyances.

Brand Connection Enables Sales

Connection to your company’s brand promise is key in order to close a sale with potential B2B buyers. Clients with strong connections to B2B brands have higher rates of consideration (79%), purchase (64%) and willingness to pay a premium (60%) than “low brand connection” competitors.

In a marketplace that is overflowing with marketing messages, customers will be more inclined to respond to yours if there is established rapport. To get their attention, marketers must “speak their language”—meaning that businesses should use words and phrases that are familiar to customers and to which customers will react to in an emotional way.

Traditional Marketing Approaches Are Dead

According to this study, “the B2B Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is dead and 86% of B2B buyers see ‘no real difference between suppliers,’” there is also a lot of competition in the marketplace. “Since most suppliers have two or three major competitors, each supplier receives just 12% to 16% of total customer mindshare. By using an emotional social selling approach as a tool to connect with potential and current buyers, B2B sales professionals can earn distinction from a marketplace of commodity.



Emotional Benefits Achieve Greater Performance

When businesses use “features, functions and business outcomes as a means of marketing their brand, they see a 21% increase in perceived brand benefits. However, “professional, social and emotional benefit” marketing leads to a 42% boost. So how do social sellers and their companies connect with buyers on an emotional level?

Helping customers see how your firm can help solve their current needs, problems, or frustrations is an approach to communicate emotional benefits. This requires B2B marketers and their social sellers to understand a buyer’s challenges, and then “tell the story” through content and social media messaging that empathizes with those emotions and clearly shows how the purchase will alleviate their current difficulties.

Find A Way To Their Heart

“Find A Way To My Heart” as Phil Collins so beautifully communicates is core to the successful B2B social sale today.  All the research makes this conclusive. It is as applicable to the B2B buyer as it is to the individual consumer. As you develop your social selling content strategy make sure that your quality assurance process validates the emotional benefit of your content or do not send it out on social media. Whether visual, written or audible, everything marketing and social sellers create and share must connect with the buyer at the emotional level before we can engage with their logical minds.

Find a Way To Their Heart.


Image attribution:Lead image: Loius Vuitton

(3rd image=Various sources)

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Rob is a recognized expert on the assessment, capture, measurement, and utilization of Relationship Capital (RC) to industry. His Global Vision: Changing the rules by delivering high-impact outcomes for a new trust-enabled world.

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