Social Identity Theory: Social Identity Theory (SIT) posits that people tend to place each other in social groups, then define each other based on those groups rather than the actual people in them. In other words, we presume people in social groups to be far more analogous than they actually are.
Because people create these social groups, they often tend to view theirs, or, the in-group, more favorably than other out-groups. This is why it’s so important to research your target audience, to see who their in-group is.
B2B Marketing Case Study: Take, for example, a campaign we created for one of our clients. Before designing the campaign, we researched our clients target audience and found out who they were. For example, we found out what they liked, how they dressed, what was important to them anything we could think of that would help define their in-group.
We then utilized that research in our messaging and creative. We designed our messaging around what was most important to them, and used jeans in our creative that were similar to what they wore, and it worked. Not only did it generate a 15% profit margin increase for our client; it also won an AMA Atlanta AMY Award, was featured in a B2B magazine article, and was even used as a case study in a master class on B2B direct marketing for DMA Australia.
Remember SIT in B2B! Research your target to find out what makes up their in-group, and simulate that whenever possible in your promotional outreach. Research has shown that we may be more trusting of our in-group, so if you are able to create a campaign that looks like the in-group of your target audience, they may listen to it more favorably and thus motivate their buying behavior.