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Do Relationships = Money in B2B Marketing?

I attended one day of “Build Business,” the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) 2010 national conference. SMPS is the national marketing organization for the A/E/C industry (Architecture, Engineering and Construction) an area in which RainCastle has strong experience through our work for Shawmut Design and Construction among others. Much of the conference was about how successful companies are surviving the recession. Each speaker had their own methodology, tools, techniques and philosophies for achieving this, which was interesting yet several days later did not stick with me.

It boils down to this, those that have made it through this phase of the recession are the ones who have built the best relationships with their clients and have thus been able to anticipate market needs and trends, and reflect that awareness in their offerings, demonstrating value for price.

One interesting insight I heard a couple of times was a questioning of the old adage, Time = Money. I don’t recall which speaker said, “Looking at every interaction as Time = Money leaves little room for developing relationships, which are critical for success today.” It seems that with the pervasiveness of social media, or in the A/E/C field, “talking about social media,” the new marketing equation is “Relationships = Money.” The adaptation of this new equation as standard practice seems to be falling along generational lines as is the adoption of social media in this market. The key challenge in the “Relationships = Money” equation for B2B marketers, remains how to quantify it. Does “Relationships = Money” resonate with you?