SiriusDecisions Survey Indicates Brand Misalignment Is Losing Deals for B-to-B Organizations

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A recent SiriusDecisions brand management survey revealed b-to-b executives’ concern that a lack of internal brand alignment could be a drag on company growth.

SiriusDecisions advocates internal brand marketing efforts aimed at closing some of the internal alignment gaps confirmed in our survey findings ...

Recent survey findings by SiriusDecisions indicate that b-to-b communication professionals believe that brand perception issues are a significant factor in lost sales opportunities for their companies. In a recent poll by the b-to-b research and advisory firm, 60 percent of participating communication professionals said that brand issues are hampering their ability to win deals.

Reasons underlying inconsistent brand performance were revealed in the SiriusDecisions survey. While 80 percent of respondents indicated close alignment between C-level executive vision and the brand, this percentage declined sharply across the broader employee base. Just under 50 percent of respondents reported that corporate and brand values were widely embraced by all employees.

The perceived lack of brand alignment was reportedly even less consistent for sales. Only 35 percent of respondents said that sales behaviors are widely aligned with the brand, while the same percentage cited inconsistent alignment, and 14 percent said sales behaviors are seldom aligned with the brand and corporate values.

“Perhaps most concerning is that when asked specifically about the extent to which the sales force reflects and is aligned with the brand, the number declined even further,” said Erin Estep, research analyst with SiriusDecisions’ Reputation Management Strategies service. “These are the people who are a b-to-b organization’s most impactful to the brand, and marketing must work with sales more effectively to have them become impactful brand ambassadors.”

On the plus side, brand alignment with demand creation has more than doubled in the last five years. According to the SiriusDecisions survey, more than 50 percent of respondents now report brand supporting demand more than 50 percent of the time. However, these results confirm there’s still ample room for improvement.

“Branding is often a secondary responsibility of an organization’s communications group; as a result, b-to-b brands often suffer neglect in terms of programs and personnel,” said Ms. Estep. “SiriusDecisions advocates internal brand marketing efforts aimed at closing some of the internal alignment gaps confirmed in our survey findings, as they’re often an inexpensive means of socializing and putting into operation an authentic, value-oriented brand.”

About SiriusDecisions
SiriusDecisions (http://www.siriusdecisions.com) helps business-to-business companies worldwide improve sales and marketing effectiveness. Management teams make more informed business decisions through access to our industry analysts, best practice research, benchmark data, peer networks, events and continuous learning courses. SiriusDecisions has offices in London, Montreal, San Francisco and Wilton, CT.

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GEOFF HILTON