What Kind of B2B Decision-Maker are You? Head or Heart?

What fuels our B2B relationships? Are they based in the head or the heart? In today’s post, we explore the relationship between the emotional and the logical and what fuels the relationship between buyer and brand.

If you look at most B2B content, you’d think that all B2B decisions are made by the head, not the heart. But is that the case?

The answer is a resounding no. B2B decision-makers often lean towards one side or another. We’ll look at both lines of thinking.

Head

We’ll start with what is apparent. There should be a lot of logic in the B2B space. After all, the relationship in B2B between buyer and brand is purely professional. That means that all decisions are made here, in the logic center. Right?

The logical make decisions based on budget, statistics, and actionable advice. Some characteristics of this sort of decision-maker include:

  • Use of logic and reason
  • Makes decisions based on facts
  • Likes long-form content packed with actionable information
  • Wants to talk with a sales rep several times before purchase
  • Uses no emotion in business decisions

These are the stone-cold businessmen who don’t hesitate when they know they’ve selected the ideal options. They never lose their temper but are rarely overjoyed by success. They are level and calculating.

What are some of the perks of interacting with a logical decision maker?

  • Collects lots of information before making decision
  • Easy to please with lots of information about the problem and your solution
  • Make plenty of smart business decisions

What are some of the flaws with it?

  • Sometimes stalls on decisions and continues to collect knowledge
  • Can be rigid
  • Less likely to connect on a personal level

Those decision-makers who only use the logic centers of the brain are great at making wise business decisions. They consider the financials, they compare several companies to make the best choice, and they are savvy negotiators.

What can you do to appeal to this kind of manager or CEO?

  • Create content jam-packed with stats and analysis
  • Do several phone calls to discuss their issue and how your brand can help
  • Keep content and communications clear and professional

Heart 

But, it can’t all be logical. Some decision-makers are anything but.

They’re the ones that work a ton to get the deal or maintain the relationship. They’re likely to take on a lot of responsibility (sometimes too much). They’re good at trusting gut instincts, which often serves usually them well.

Some characteristics of this end of the spectrum are:

  • Takes on a lot of responsibilities
  • Spontaneous – apt to buy or bye at any moment
  • Creative
  • Emotional
  • Makes decisions based on gut feelings

The emotional are good at negotiating differently, as they are more empathetic and understanding of the emotions of others. That also means they’re more likely to be emotionally affected as well, which can impact their work.

What are some of the perks of dealing with B2B decision-makers?

  • They are more likely to buy based on a one-on-one relationship with a sales rep
  • They’re responsive to more forms of content
  • They might buy at any moment

What are some of the flaws?

  • They might get their feelings hurt
  • Sometimes take on too much
  • Some impulsive decisions might make lousy business choices

Those decision-makers on this side of the spectrum are making decisions more like a consumer making private decisions. They often will go on branding and personal connections to determine who to buy from.

What can you do to appeal to this kind of manager or CEO?

  • Brand your website with using human pictures
  • Create appealing, digestible content like infographics
  • Pair this decision-maker with a single contact at your brand (inviting the opportunity for one on one relationships)

Finding a Balance

In this post, we talk about B2B decision-makers as if they can only be a logical or emotional decision-maker. But nothing in life is black and white. Decision-makers fall on a spectrum, just like there are countless shades of grey in between black and white.

Some are more emotional, with tinges to logical thinking. Some are almost all logic, except when faced with riskier decisions.

You should have marketing and sales processes that align with this blend of decision-makers. By observing what type of content your audience consumes, you can learn what sort of decision-maker you’re catering to.

Figure out if you serve creatives or the analytical type. Maybe you serve both, and that’s something you could eventually segment for your marketing messages.

Regardless, use this post to inform your strategy and plan out your marketing messages accordingly. Get creative and see how this idea of heart vs. head decision making can change your approach.


 

Let us know what you think: 

  • Do you cater your marketing towards those that make choices using their head or heart? 
  • How does that change your content strategy?
  • How can  you appeal to the spectrum of decision-makers you serve?

 

 


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