Fellow marketers often ask me: is it hard to market into the enterprise, where you have to engage businesses rather than consumers?

My answer is always the same: here at Taulia Inc., we don’t market to businesses, we market to people. In fact, I don’t even like to use the phrase “business-to-business.”

Why? When you use that word, it’s easy to lose sight of what makes up a business: people. A business is faceless; it doesn’t have emotions and a personality, it doesn’t stay up at night worrying about the bottom line and strategizing best-business-practices to stay competitive. It’s a shell, a logo. A vehicle for innovation, for innovative people. If you think of potential customers as businesses, and not as individual people, you’ve already lost.

That’s why every time we produce any type of content, for any stage in the funnel, whether it be humorous videos, email messages, or ads, we focus on the individual person who we’re creating the content for. Understand their individual needs, preferences and pain-points; what drives them, what keeps them up at night and what they want to accomplish, and then map your company’s benefits directly to their motivations.

After mapping the benefits, it is absolutely key, regardless of where the person is in the funnel, to simplify your message and give your brand a personality.

As a marketer, differentiation is key, and we’ve found that the most effective way to do this is by making messages funny, and ultimately, making your brand likeable. All people have a sense of humor and a natural attraction to not only likeable people, but likeable content, companies and brands. After making your audience comfortable by being creative and unique, you then you need to build trust through valuable, credible content. We find that letting our customers and products speak for themselves is a great way to build credibility, but I’ll save that for another post.

Marketing is about understanding what motivates and drives people. Your potential customer likely doesn’t wake up thinking about the product you’re trying to sell them. So it’s important to think about who they are personally, because that will help you understand what they do wake up thinking about—and will inform you about the best way to appeal to them. And remember: you’re not marketing from “business-to-business,” you’re marketing from “people-to-people”.