Leadership at industrial companies have often viewed digital content as a consumer market requirement. This is understandable because consumer brands were the first to use digital to market and sell their products. In addition, digital companies such Uber, Doordash, and Twitter only strengthened the perception of digital as a consumer tool.
What they didn’t realize was that as digital continued to pervade the lives of consumers, those consumers learned to use digital for communication, entertainment, shopping, etc. What often is missed is that those consumers are also the industrial company’s employees, prospective employees, leadership, customers, and partners.
They are all individuals who use digital every day to view the world, so they are now expecting to view their work world digitally as well. Their expectation for their digital work experience is that it should be as easy to use and engaging as their non-work online experiences. They view their company through the company’s online branding - content as well as system interfaces.
When it comes to branding most industrial companies have a website that was created years ago, it’s heavily focused on products and contains more “what” content than “why” content. In other words, it tells visitors what the company does or makes, not why it's important to others.
As more and more employees are working remotely or hybrid, their connection to their company is even more reliant on visuals and messaging the company has in its digital content. That digital content is no longer just a website, but now includes social media, company systems, company information systems, marketing and, of course, sales materials.
Those visuals and messaging, aka brand, create an emotional connection between the company and all its audiences. Those audiences want to see the brand reflecting their expectations in the company, its products and/or services. Employees want to see that their company has a purpose and a reason for what it does. Prospective employees want to see that yours is a company where they would want to work. Customers want to know they are being serviced and valued with information readily available online from a company that knows them and their needs.
This is all starting to happen in the B2B world and it’s those companies who have a strong digital brand and presence who will have a first mover advantage over their still analog competitors.