International courier DHL has emerged as the globe’s most inspiring B2B brand in the new INSPIRE research from Wunderman Thompson
. DHL, which tops a global ranking of 50 B2B brands, is closely followed by rival couriers FedEx and UPS in second and third place. Each of the distribution specialists scores highly on the three factors that generate the overall Inspire Score - 'Elevating', 'Magnetic' and 'Motivating'.
Other brands to make the top 50 include Dell and Microsoft. The highest ranked UK brand is Royal Mail, in ninth place, followed by Barclays (13th) and Lloyds Bank (29th).
Wunderman Thompson’s B2B findings are part of its broader INSPIRE study, which seeks to understand what it means to be an inspiring brand. The rigorous three-phased process involved academic research, a proprietary BrandZ data set studying over 33,000 brands in 183 categories across 45 markets over the past six years and a survey of 4,000 respondents in 2020, to identify the qualities a brand must embody, the stories it should tell and the experiences it can design in order to inspire people.
The results demonstrate that inspiring brands outperform peers on two key metrics, growing market share faster, and enabling them to charge at higher price points. Wunderman Thompson’s data shows that this is as true for B2B brands as in the B2C world but that too often creativity is lost as B2B marketing tends to stick to the same uninspiring rulebook.
Wunderman Thompson’s INSPIRE highlights that inspiring brands have a significant impact on B2B buyers. These brands are:
- 2.2x more likely to be remembered when buyers are in market
- 2.7x more likely to be rated as having better products/services
- 20% more trusted as brands
- 16% more likely to be recommended by buyers
- 2x more likely to be strongly considered by buyers
- 5.3x more likely to be buyers’ first choice
The research demonstrates that B2B brands which underestimate the power of elevation and magnetism in B2B marketing do so at their peril because the most successful are those that provide their customers with more than rational benefits.
Martin Harrison, UK strategy partner at Wunderman Thompson, said: “We believe there's never been a better time to be a B2B marketer. New research from the IPA, LinkedIn, and our own proprietary INSPIRE study shows that there is a huge opportunity for B2B brands to engage, inspire and excite their audiences. And that inspiration will drive growth.”
“Yet, when we look at B2B we tend to see a sea of sameness. Rational propositions abound, and the lure of hyper-targeting and 'efficiency' obscure the big picture. It's time to ditch the rulebook and remember the audience is human; driven by emotion, curiosity and wonder.”