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  • Writer's pictureDavid Pop

Use emotions to increase B2B SaaS leads by 90%


Use emotions to increase B2B SaaS leads by 90% Blog cover photo by enaks

One of the biggest misconceptions in B2B marketing is that everyone is led by numbers and facts. But is this actually true? If so, that would mean that we as humans are capable of performing our daily tasks like a GPT without emotions and feelings. If that were the case, fluctuations in weather wouldn't impact work performance, and a rough day at the office wouldn't spill over into personal life. Also, only the cheapest and best ROI-focused SaaS products would have a chance to dominate the B2B landscape. But this is not the reality that we know. So why are we so number-oriented in B2B and why are we forgetting emotions in our B2B marketing activities at all scales?


I can only provide a short answer to this question - we tend to focus more on numbers in B2B than in B2C because it is easier and more comfortable that way. However, I have some real-life scenarios where emotions have played a significant role in transforming several B2B SaaS products to a more emotion-led approach, resulting in the generation of more qualified leads. To be true to ourselves, let's examine the numbers behind this claim!  


Emotions are everywhere, even in B2B


Emotions are the driving force behind our decisions, and this holds true in the business world as well. In fact, research indicates that emotional factors account for a significant 56% of the final B2B purchasing decision. It's important to note that the boundary between our personal and professional lives can blur, with 34% of SME decision-makers admitting that their personal experiences with a supplier influence their B2B purchases. So, it's clear that emotions play a critical role in B2B marketing. A compelling case study has demonstrated just how effective this approach can be. 


We conducted an A/B test for an early-stage SaaS startup in the Customer Intelligence sector, targeting the Northern American and Western European markets. 


For the experiment, we performed A/B testing only on their home page and smaller pieces such as headlines and product descriptions. After this, we started crafting the messaging for our A/B testing experiment.


For this experiment, we had one control which was the original content. Although the original content was well-written, it didn't offer anything new or unique compared to its +100 direct competitors. Given the competition, messaging was crucial. Therefore, we kept the control content as it was and developed two alternative versions of the home page.


One alternative version focused on the product's values and the benefits it could bring to its audience. This version highlighted the product's features and benefits more prominently. The other alternative version focused on the audience's emotions and struggles. 


Unfortunately we won't reveal much about the content, but we'll provide some examples in Table 1 to illustrate the difference.


Use emotions to increase B2B SaaS leads by 90% Blog A/B Testing Content by enaks

Table 1. Key highlights from Message A/B Testing


What has been changed in the content? 


Let’s analyze what we did for this experiment and why we did it. The control message emphasizes the practical and immediate benefits that AI can provide for operational tasks. It addresses common business concerns such as improving efficiency, responsiveness, and utilizing customer feedback to prevent churn and dissatisfaction. This message is targeted towards decision-makers who prioritize operational excellence and risk mitigation.


The value proposition is geared towards professionals who value data-driven approaches and organizational efficiency. It emphasizes how Artificial Intelligence (AI) can improve a company's analytical capabilities and simplify data management. This directly relates to how adopting AI can boost competitiveness and effectiveness in managing complex datasets.


The message of emotion speaks to the emotional and psychological factors that matter to business decision-makers who place a high value on customer relationships and user experience. It underscores the importance of empathy, simplicity, and a personal touch in managing customer interactions, resonating with those who believe that business prosperity is closely tied to customer satisfaction and emotional engagement.


Emotion-led messaging increased B2B SaaS leads by 90% 


The experiment ran for 3 weeks, and each segment was evenly divided into 33.3%. 


Key performance metrics from Message A/B Testing by Enaks

Figure 1. Key performance metrics from Message A/B Testing



As you can see in Figure 1, both alternatives performed much better than the control group. This is because both alternatives had a more unique and compelling message than their competitors. 


So, the first takeaway from this A/B testing experiment is to not be afraid to be different in your messaging compared to your competitors. Although copying your competitors' approach may seem like the easiest and safest option. However, being different can make a significant difference for the better. 


The alternative that focused on negative emotions had a drastic impact. The conversion rate for leads almost doubled, surpassing the industry benchmark of roughly 5% in this sector with a 10.30% conversion rate. The emotion-led approach also resulted in a 90% increase in the number of leads without compromising their quality.


Why do emotions have such a huge impact in B2B?


Emotional messages have a greater impact on customers as they connect on a personal level and make the message more relatable and memorable. When customers feel that a message speaks directly to their experiences, values, or needs, they tend to engage more with the content. 


Studies indicate that emotions significantly impact consumer decisions, with 95% of purchase decisions occurring in the subconscious mind due to humans being emotional decision-makers. Messages that evoke feelings like empathy, happiness, or security can effectively influence customer behavior and preferences. In industries where there are similar offerings, highlighting the human aspect of a product or service can differentiate a brand from its competitors. 


An emotion-led message that highlights understanding and valuing customer perspectives can make your offering stand out as more thoughtful and customer-centric. Modern customers expect brands to not only understand their needs but also to demonstrate empathy and authenticity. An emotional message that effectively communicates these qualities can resonate more strongly with audiences looking for brands that align with their ethical and personal values.



The next steps


In conclusion, what should we do next? Should we prioritize using an emotional approach in everything we do, or should we run A/B tests to determine which messaging converts the best? The answer is not necessarily to jump right into A/B testing or switch to an emotion-led approach, although it may work for some businesses. 


The key message here is that when it comes to lead generation, even small improvements in our current approach can make a significant difference without increasing marketing spend. While I recommend conducting A/B tests to determine which messaging resonates best with your audience, it's important to remember that making an impact starts from the inside out. 


There are many opportunities available to us that can genuinely improve our approach, but we need to pause, listen, and take action. Until next: prepare, transition, harvest!


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