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November 30, 2023


Mason Ahrens

B2Bored blog article

Features shouldn’t be the only feature in your B2B ads. 

Bad Numbers

There’s an assumption that B2B buyers only care about the features of a product. And so, many B2B ads resemble the bullet points of a PowerPoint presentation. Sure, the picture is nice and high-res, but these kinds of ads lack the actual connection between the brand and the buyer. 

This doesn’t come from a bad place. Buyers should be thrilled with features, at least more so than the common B2C. I mean, the best features should win, right? The invisible hand of the market, or something like that. In a business world driven by data and facts, it’s a reasonable conclusion to come to. But these kinds of ads just aren’t very effective. 

The simple truth is people don’t remember low-quality creative. And 75% of B2B ads score a 1 out of 5 on creativity (Not B2B ads from Creative Energy, of course). 

Sweet Emotion

Don’t worry data nerds, this is quantifiable research. LinkedIn’s B2B Institute, a think tank on how to do better advertising in the B2B world, found that emotional strategies outperform rational strategies. 

Emotional ads deliver more revenue graphic.

The bottom line is buyers are human. The difference between why a B2C ad is effective versus why a B2B ad is effective is not all that different. We still need an ad that connects with the intended target, and our B2B targets are simply going to feel bored if we supply them with a steady stream of boring ads. It may be their job to buy the right thing for their company, but that doesn’t mean they are simply cogs or mechanisms. Besides, the real maxim we’re dealing with here is a deep human truth that is so fundamental, that it can sometimes be passed over without much thought. The truth is–boring stuff sucks. 

Laugh all you want, but how many ads have you seen that are as bland as the color palette of the Atacama Desert? The thing is, most ads are no good, especially in the B2B market. Which is unfortunate, as it is a market with so much potential. 

Easy (Never) Does It

Most people don’t like making things that aren’t fun. While some aspects of this industry may have a reputation for being the proverbial “stick in the mud,” I don’t believe that people set out to make uninteresting work. The kicker?–it costs more. Making creative takes time, and agencies bill by creative hours. It’s so much easier to slap some features on an image that’s “good enough.” 

But as someone with a deeper understanding of life than I once said, “You get what you pay for.”

Commitment and the bottom line graphic.

As this lovely visual aid shows, the higher the Creative Commitment score, the higher the effectiveness. It’s a long-term game, really. Because what’s not shown on this graph is the time it takes to make work that hits a Creative Commitment score of 12-15. Which is point one for the non-creative approach to advertising. 

But the value of creative, consistent, and strategic ads can build something far greater than simple growth (not that there’s anything wrong with that). It can build a recognizable brand presence that buyers will know, recognize, and perhaps even trust. Why is that important? Why our conveniently placed last factoid of the day: 

Of all the buyers that see your ad, only 5% are in the stages of buying at a given time

That is small small small. 

But with a great brand, that other 95% will recall your rad ad when entering the buying stages. That’s the truth of brand power–you’re the first choice of the subconscious. 

We Build Cult Brands

What an awesome segue into a plug for my own agency. I would feel ashamed, but this is an agency blog on an agency website. You knew what you were getting into. 

Creative Energy’s calling card is the natural conclusion of my entire point. Our strength as an agency is building a presence that lasts. It is something that takes time. It is something that goes through growing pains and is sometimes hard to accept. But a fully built brand cultivates followers like a certain convincing science fiction author. Imagine, customers who don’t even know that they have a preference for your product. A presence that weathers ups and downs. A presence that sticks in the minds of buyers. 

I would say that maybe this is just my opinion, but I have graphs on my side. And so does Creative Energy. I mean if you made it all the way to the end of this humble article, you’re bound to be more than a little interested. 

So go to the contact page. C’mon. Stop reading. Build your perfect brand!