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The ‘Purpose Gap’ Facing Many B2B Brands

Most B2B professionals say it is important for their brand to have a clear purpose, yet few have embedded a purpose in their business, according to research from the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), Carol Cone On Purpose, and The Harris Poll.

The report was based on data from a survey conducted in 2019 among 259 B2B professionals with a job title of director or higher.

Some 86% of respondents say it is important for a B2B business to clearly articulate why it exists.

However, only 24% of respondents say purpose is activated across their business, from culture and innovation to operations and engagement with society.

Respondents say the biggest barrier to activating a purpose for their B2B brand is that purpose engagement feels more like a PR exercise than an authentic commitment (56% agree).

Moreover, fully 51% agree that purpose does not play a considerable role in their competitive set.

Some 93% of respondents say their B2B brand is somewhere on the “purpose journey,” with 42% saying they are in the early stages.

More than half (57%) of respondents say their B2B brand is more focused on purpose now than it was three years earlier.

About the research: The report was based on data from a survey conducted in 2019 among 259 B2B professionals with a job title of director or higher.

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