There’s a lot of talk nowadays about the importance of investing in branding for B2C (Business to Consumer) companies, those that sell directly to individuals. Many will argue that emotions play a much more significant role when a person makes a purchase decision for themselves, rather than “the rational decision” of hiring an outsourced service provider at their job.
Does this mean it’s easier to make a sale in the context of consumer goods compared to service offerings? Definitely not.
We need to understand that in any purchase decision, there’s a journey that the customer goes through, whether consciously or not. Does impulse buying exist? Yes, but very rarely does it come out of nowhere and happen with just a single stimulus. The desire for consumption is not spontaneous; it’s the result of a well-thought-out strategy that combines branding, marketing, and design efforts to catch your audience’s attention for their needs. Once this is achieved, the mission is to show that your product can fulfill those needs and even provide additional benefits that the customer may not have expected but significantly impact their life. These benefits could be reinforcing their lifestyle, providing convenience, a status symbol, acceptance within a group, and so on.
In summary, the journey works more or less like this:
- One day, during his lunch break, João sees an influencer recommending a facial scrub on Instagram.
- Few weeks later, in the evening, while watching the news, he sees an advertisement for the same product, featuring a celebrity he admires.
- The next day, João goes to the pharmacy to buy medicine, and there on the shelf is that facial scrub. It catches his attention because of the unusual color combination of the packaging, which is not typical for this segment, where products usually have clean, light colors.
- He picks up the package to analyze it, reads the label, and notices a seal highlighting that this is a sulfate-free product, and the exfoliating beads are not made of plastic. João knows that this is good for his health and the environment, so he decides to try the product since it won’t make much of a difference in his monthly budget.
Do you see? Even João himself might think that he made an impulse purchase at that moment because he already had a full bottle of another facial scrub at home. However, in reality, his decision was influenced by the brand’s communication strategy, which made a consistent presence in his daily life through different media channels and effectively conveyed a message.
Contrary to what many may think, this journey is not so different in a corporate environment, except that it is much less passive and consists of more stages. In this sense, taking care of your company’s touchpoints (the channels or media through which your potential customer can interact with your brand) can be even more important.
How so? Let us explain: Now João – the same person who bought a new facial scrub – wants to hire an accounting firm for his business. There’s no shelf in a pharmacy where all accountants line up for you to choose the best cost-benefit, right? So what does he do? There are two main paths: either he searches for “Accounting firm in my city” on Google, or he asks for recommendations from friends and colleagues. From that moment on, in either case, the factors that will influence João’s decision will, to some extent, be similar to those aspects that led him to decide to buy the facial scrub.
With a list of potential suppliers in hand, João will weigh the positive and negative points of each one until he arrives at the answer of who seems to offer the best cost-benefit for the accounting service he needs:
- Price and quality would be two of the most significant factors, don’t you agree? So you can be sure that this is the main message that all researched companies will try to convey to João: “I have the best quality for the most fair price in the market.”
- Reliability is a second factor of great importance. João will give preference to the company that has been in the market for a longer time, has a more professional image (and yes, this includes the design of their logo and website), good reviews on Google and social media.
- Differentiation is key. Everyone does accounting; everyone tries to claim they offer quality accounting, but at the end of the day, João will invest in the company that has a tangible differential to meet his needs.
At the end of the research, João concluded that it’s worth paying a little more if he knows that his accountants will be available to answer his questions at any time, even on weekends. So, he didn’t hire the company that claimed to have quality, but the one that proved to be a partner, present, and more attentive in their service. In other words, he hired the company that had a differential that made all the difference for him.
Speaking like this, it sounds simple, right? But the truth is that discovering a company’s true differential is a challenging and difficult task because this differential must be something that the company is capable of delivering; otherwise, the effect of the work will be the opposite of what is desired, and customer satisfaction will be replaced by disappointment, which certainly compromises the company’s reputation.
Many companies today are already aware of their differential and purpose (that extra something they deliver associated with their product). A good example of this is startups that are born and grow rapidly, often outperforming the old market leaders who failed to update and adapt their language to this new demand in time.
Well, after discovering a company’s differential, what’s the next step? Is it enough just to know what your differential is and incorporate it into your sales pitch? We argue that it is not. For us, the branding process only begins with defining your positioning, and from there on, the challenge shows up daily: to communicate this message clearly and consistently and incorporate positioning into every aspect of the company, from its corporate culture to the greeting used in the email signature of each employee.
Here at Motora, we believe that a good brand strategy must always be accompanied by good texts and a good visual language. This is more than just the basics, but we always tell our clients: each of these elements is small pieces of a big puzzle, which is the brand image. Communication helps us put these pieces together, like telling a story, but there is a central piece responsible for giving meaning to everything else, and that piece is management, the executive body, which must use this strategy as a compass in decision-making. If all these points are aligned, your chances of conversion increase with much less effort.
So, do you agree with us? Do you also think that nowadays it’s no longer possible to have misaligned speeches on different media and just let it go unnoticed? The good news is that you don’t have to worry about this alone. Here at Motora, for example, we start every corporate consulting by evaluating how your speech is constructed on different media, and if you’re interested in having a preliminary evaluation of your brand, we do that for you. Just give us a shout! 🙂