Successful B2B Marketing: Unveiling 6 Traits of Genuine Connection

Successful B2B marketing is driven primarily by authenticity. Authenticity is a coveted quality that is easy to desire and identify, but not quite as simple to execute. Building trust and likeability often demands subtlety and patience, while standing out in a crowded marketplace requires boldness. It’s a delicate balancing act that B2B marketers must master to achieve their goals. As the rise of generative AI tools continues, human authenticity will emerge as a crucial differentiator in B2B marketing. This raises an important question: How can B2B marketers ensure they operate from a position of genuine authenticity?

Successful B2B Marketing: Unlocking 6 traits to create genuine brand authenticity

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The Six Traits of Successful B2B Marketing that drive authenticity.

To perform a successful balancing act, a sturdy base is essential. Understanding the six core traits of B2B marketing success —consistency, transparency, integrity, honesty, relevancy, and action—provides a vital framework for evaluating future communications. Moreover, employing these traits as criteria helps marketers avoid activities that could jeopardize the trust they have carefully built. Let’s delve into these six traits:


Being authentic means being true to oneself, which entails displaying consistent personality traits. The temptation to pursue universal appeal often leads marketers to contort themselves and act out of character—a trap that should be avoided. Embrace your uniqueness and ensure it is reflected not only in your core values but also throughout your branding guidelines. Make it easy for creative producers to grasp your brand’s tone, style, and visual identity that your audience has come to recognize as its defining characteristics. As instructor Justin Ahrens explains, “..your brand guideline should encompass the story of why your brand exists, along with your vision, values, and voice used in all internal and external communications. It should address how you want to communicate, present yourself, and share”.


In courtroom settings, prosecuting attorneys often found that jurors—fellow humans with their own flaws—may start identifying with the defendant. Transparency in B2B marketing operates on a similar principle. Transparency doesn’t mean revealing all your secrets; rather, it involves having the courage to bare your soul when vulnerability can bring added value and strengthen the bond between your brand and stakeholders. Winning with weakness is a time-tested B2B marketing strategy that appears to be increasingly effective.


Having core values is considered an essential best practice in B2B marketing success. Upholding those values, regardless of the circumstances, is integrity. Marketing teams face daily pressures to deviate from their values, even if only slightly, for the sake of convenience or immediate returns. Integrity serves as an accountability measure that encompasses the entire marketing organization, from the CMO to each individual contributor.


It may seem simple—just don’t lie. However, honesty in today’s landscape requires proactivity. If your B2B brand is like most, you’ve generated a substantial amount of content, and your data points, messaging, and pricing will continuously evolve. How you reflect these updates in your content can significantly impact how honest your audience perceives you to be. So, in addition to avoiding twisting facts and figures, create a system for ensuring accuracy in your digital content as it inevitably lends to the success of your B2B marketing strategy.


We live in a world of shiny objects and transient trends. If the “content wheelhouse” were a physical place, it would resemble a glass house at the intersection of temptation street and distraction avenue. Despite the difficulty of ignoring tempting topics outside our wheelhouse, marketers must resist the urge. As CEO Steph Lund advises, “Don’t jump on a trend that isn’t within your area of expertise. Inauthenticity will be apparent to your customers, and once you cross that line, it’s hard to reverse the impact on a savvy audience.”


The sixth trait of successful B2B marketing boils down to a simple question: Are we backing up what we’re saying? Anyone can tell people what they want to hear, but empty words eventually deflate, taking trust with them. B2B buyers prefer to do business with brands that have a positive impact on society and the communities they serve. Many successful B2B companies align their brands with causes such as industry ethics, environmental sustainability, and social equity. Their success stems from acting in line with their words. Nowadays, successful B2B marketing is less about talking the talk and more about demonstrating why and how your brand walks its walk. For instance, consistently highlighting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) topics and initiatives throughout the year, rather than only during calendar events like Black History Month or Pride Month, showcases an authentic commitment.

B2B marketing success isn’t beholden to just these traits – but Consistency, Transparency, Integrity, Honesty, Relevance & Action are the building bricks of setting it up. But now that you are clear on the traits what is it that you do? A plan without good execution is a waste of time. Executing a successful B2B marketing strategy needs these four smart habits of building brand trust.


Reference: ‘Which traits distinguish truly authentic marketing content in B2B‘ by Steve Kearns