5 Signs a Marketer Lacks Emotional Intelligence

A good marketer has skills, utilizes the latest technology, and excels at planning and executing activities.

But what a good marketer often lacks is emotional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence is defined as, “The ability to perceive emotions, to access and generate emotions so as to assist thought, to understand emotions and emotional knowledge, and to reflectively regulate emotions so as to promote emotional and intellectual growth.”

I’d argue that overcoming barriers in emotional intelligence is what separates good marketers from great ones.

Emotionally aware marketers can navigate emotional challenges, especially those in the deliberately emotionally sterile world of B2B marketing.

Let’s use some self-awareness to examine these common signs a marketer lacks emotional intelligence.

Tasks Dominate the Relationship

Obviously,  conversations between brand and customer have the same end goal – a solution or a sale.

For marketers with low emotional intelligence, this often means the content they create is insensitive to the needs of those reading it. The content might sound too salesy or focus on qualities the creator thinks are important, but customers don’t care about.

An emotionally intelligent marketer knows that thinking about the potential of the relationship between a brand and a lead opens space for a better one.

Consider what you can help them with, instead of thinking about how much money they could add to your bank account. Don’t let the task of selling overshadow an even healthier and more productive relationship.

We Aren’t Providing Value

Instead of letting the final task of selling overshadow the needs of the customer, practice creating content that caters to them.

This involves listening carefully to those in your space, then specifically creating content that is valuable to them.

Value comes from addressing a potential buyer’s specific needs. They tell you on their own, maybe you read their social feeds, perhaps you even ask them about their needs.

Help them solve their problems with both your content and offering. Actionable aid in solving problems is the value your customers are looking for.

We’re Digitally Insensitive

In person (or even on video), it’s easy to know when to stop talking. You read the body language of the person you are speaking with. If they start to shift around, look away, or glaze over, you know that it’s time to switch the topic or stop talking entirely.

Getting that feedback is harder in the digital realm. You must watch for more subtle signs like lack of engagement, and hope you catch those early signs before you lose a lead entirely.

We Forget to Listen

Sometimes, marketers get so busy talking, they forget to listen. Pay attention to leads’ likes, dislikes, and needs.

Take note of the language they use and what they like outside of work.

Even better, ask questions. See what’s wanted from your brand and what needs that you can fill. Asking questions and listening to the answers is a sure sign of emotional intelligence and your marketing will be better for it.

This can be accomplished through surveys and asking questions in relevant communities. A sure sign of emotional intelligence in a marketer is when they leave the conversation open with their leads.

We Avoid Hard Conversations

It’s hard to really engage a lead late funnel.

You feel you must ask them along the lines of, “Are you ready for a phone call?”

These are hard questions to ask. Because the answer is very clearly yes or no.

Emotionally intelligent marketers breeze through this by waiting until the lead is ready before moving them to the next stage of the pipeline. They then ask the questions in a tactful way, to avoid making the lead nervous or angry.

Be empathic with your leads and make sure to not press them too hard.

Emotional intelligence makes the marketer.

Be sensitive to the thoughts, feelings, and words of your leads. Consider how your messaging makes them feel when they receive it. Are they overwhelmed? Sad? Angry? Or excited to receive your content?

Use testing and analytics to determine this. Then tailor your results accordingly.

In the end, those wielding a decent amount of emotional intelligence are going to forge better connections and those, in turn, develop into better relationships.


Let us know what you think in the comments section:

  • In what instances have you really connected with your audience?
  • Do you think those instances are due to emotional intelligence?


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