B2B sales is a tricky thing. In the B2C world, when a consumer wants to buy a computer or a new shirt she just goes online or visits the store to pick one out. She’s influenced by price, specs, design and, of course, the brand behind the product. But for many B2B companies, there is no store. Instead, your clients get on the phone or take a meeting with your sales staff. They chat, bond, play a round of golf or meet for drinks. An element of emotion comes into play. Your customers don’t just make purchases; they make deals. It’s not just a transaction; it’s often a relationship.

The problem is: who is the relationship with? Many companies invest heavily in building relationships between their staff and their clients. However, staff eventually leave; sometimes of their own choice, sometimes not. Regardless, the same rockstar sales exec you hired for her contacts will take the clients—your clients—with her out the door. Probably to your competitor.

Make your brand your best salesperson. Instead of letting your sales staff do all the relationship building, you need to use marketing to foster a loyalty mentality in your clients. Much the same way people are loyal to a brand of cars, coffee or jeans, B2B companies should use the same branding processes and techniques B2C companies use to build a relationship and earn an attachment that goes far beyond the sales executive managing the account.

Only the strongest brands survive. To do this, you need to create a brand that incites passion. One that inspires. One that motivates. And one that’s strong enough to lead and convince your customers to follow. Think about your personal favorite brands. From Patagonia to Jimmy Johns to Nike to Jack Daniels to Tiffany’s to countless others, the brands that people love most aren’t afraid to take a position, have an opinion and make a stand. In B2C, safe, wishy-washy brands are easily discarded; strong brands outlast a single bad product, a moment of poor customer service or the loss of an employee. B2B is no different.

Your brand should lead, not follow. Instead of just having rockstar salespeople, you should be cultivating a rockstar brand. Your clients should be making a deal with your business, not your people. And your brand should be giving your sales staff credibility, not the other way around.

It’s time to make your brand the biggest rockstar in your company.  Click here and let’s get started today.