When we think of ad campaigns, we often think of exciting high-profile B2C marketing – thought-provoking or hilarious commercials, engaging digital marketing, innovative loyalty programs, and clever social media campaigns.
Now, what comes to your mind when you think of B2B marketing?
While I can’t read your thoughts, they probably don’t conjure up images of innovation and creativity. Most likely because B2B is viewed as dull and transactional. While we know there is a distinction between B2B and B2C marketing, Dominic Cummings’ quote, “Businesses aren’t B2B or B2C, they’re human to human (H2H),” reflects the direction and approach we [marketers] need to take when it comes to the B2B side of business.
We can’t lose sight that at the core our goal is to make meaningful and impactful exchanges with people. The only difference is that B2B clients are thinking beyond individual needs and searching for solutions that will benefit all the people they serve.
Just like the award-winning B2C marketing we come across every day, we are starting to see exceptional work in the B2B space with human-centered campaigns across all channels and facets.
Here are some of the best B2B marketing examples for a bit of inspiration:
MOI’s ‘Digital Bank of the Future’ for Oracle campaign brought in 500 business leads within its first week and generated $28m. Using similar tactics you would see in the B2C world, MOI (an award-winning B2B agency contracted by Oracle) leveraged over 50 influencers with a strong following of banking C-Suite execs and co-created content that would be pushed through social platforms, paid media, targeted email campaigns, and more. Running for six years, efforts also included workshops, boot camps, industry events, and the Zig Bank application allowing executives to experience Oracle’s Cloud-based solution for themselves.
Going back to their Bay Area roots and the inspiration behind its logo, Cisco launched the ‘Bridge to Possible’ campaign. Giving viewers an emotional connection to the brand, the content evokes an inspirational tone that promises to bridge the divide between problem and solution for corporations around the globe. Touching imagery, powerful voiceover, and a popular track by One Republic, this is a modern approach to B2B marketing that shows human connection is key.
For a B2B social media campaign, Shopify proved that creativity is king. The e-commerce shopping platform created a short 3-minute video showing business owners how in just 10-minutes you could start a t-shirt store through Shopify.
Focusing their tactics via social media, their efforts proved successful garnering over 1 million views and 3.5 million followers on Facebook and over 17 million views and 200,000 subscribers on YouTube.
Experiential Event Marketing
Refinery29 a digital lifestyle publisher, which focuses on female business leaders used the power of storytelling to create “an interactive funhouse of style, culture, & technology.” Creating an art installation of 29 distinct rooms, Refinery29 allowed partners to get creative and showcase their brands as a work of art.
The stunt created a truly unforgettable experience that had attendees interacting with the brand in a physical space but though an invaluable emotional connection.