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B2B Brand Management

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B2B Brand Management


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Attract both individual and corporate customers with brands that express your company’s “personality” and values.

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Editorial Rating



  • Applicable
  • Concrete Examples
  • Insider's Take


Philip Kotler, one of the fathers of modern marketing, and co-author Waldemar Pfoertsch do not push the branding envelope in this book, but it is nevertheless a useful text on B2B branding – and in fact on branding in general. They illustrate their points with numerous, interesting and relevant real-world examples, as well as diagrams and charts, and they go into great detail about the nuances of brand building, maintenance and architecture. Students and early-career marketers can come here to learn why and how businesses need to build better brands.


Why B2B Companies Need Brands

Marketers have long understood that branding is an essential part of their relationship with consumers (business-to-consumer, or B2C), but only recently have they begun to understand that it is important in business-to-business (B2B) transactions as well.

One reason for the previous neglect is that many marketers believe brands lure consumers into making irrational buying decisions based on their emotions, impulses and images – and business purchasing decisions are supposed to be rational. In the B2B world, many industry sectors still do not have established brands. So, if you’re a new entrant, you can gain a first-mover advantage by capitalizing on “unrealized brand potential.”

Branding is not simply sticking a logo on your product. Your brand is what makes your products and their characteristics identifiable to your customers and differentiates them from the competition’s. Your brand simplifies and accelerates customers’ buying decisions by endowing your products with personalities. Branding affects your relationships with customers, shareholders, suppliers, regulators, employees and members of the community.

What Makes ...

About the Authors

Philip Kotler is the professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Waldemar Pfoertsch is professor of International Business at Pforzheim University and a visiting lecturer at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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