Turns out, the math you use to measure really big things like galaxies (Einstein’s Theory of Relativity) won’t work when you’re measuring quantum (teeny-tiny) objects. Same goes for vice versa. A big part of this is due to how gravity is hugely powerful at the astronomical level but surprisingly weak at the quantum level due to the lack of mass that gravity depends on. Further, of the four known forces of nature (including electromagnetism and the strong and weak forces), gravity is the only one with no fundamental particle associated with it (that we know of).
This is where string theorists come in. If they’re right, it would mean there is indeed a gravity particle, the “graviton”. This graviton floats around freely not only among the three dimensions we observe in our day-to-day lives (up and down, left and right, and back and forth), but it’s further diluted among eight other dimensions we’ve yet to detect.
In the grandest B2B scales, we have brand awareness and broader-based targeting (relativity). Conversely, we have micro-targeted lead generation or account-based marketing (ABM) strategies (quantum). The tactics at one scale rarely make sense when applied to the other. And yet, we strongly suspect that the strength of a brand is directly linked to our ability to drive leads and sales. Quantifying that strength or determining how it directly influences buying behavior is far from an exact science, however.
Perhaps one day, we’ll discover the B2B graviton, the metric that unlocks the strongest-performing campaigns the universe has ever seen. Personally? I wouldn’t bet on it. People are complex, emotional creatures, and what one person values in a brand could look totally different to someone else. I don’t know how realistic it is that we’ll ever be able to pinpoint all the variables that make humans behave like … well, humans. Not with any degree of mathematical certainty, anyhow.
In the absence of such hard data, we should be open to hearing what our customers care about, even if it’s only anecdotal. This can be accomplished with something as sophisticated as a focus group or something as simple as a friendly telephonic chat with a valued client. We need to be open to their feedback — both the good and bad — and adapt to it regularly. We also need to appreciate the emotional behaviors that drive their decision making. This may not be an exact science, but it can certainly help you to find a healthy balance between promoting awareness and driving sales.