Emotional and Creative Intelligence: Keys to People-First GTM Success

Emotional and Creative Intelligence: Keys to People-First GTM Success

Nick Bennett 5 min

What’s up, everyone? Welcome back to another edition of the people-first GTM Newsletter!

This is a special one. For anyone who follows Mark and me on LinkedIn, we are rebranding and removing the ClubPF name to TACK Insider. So yesterday, we officially said goodbye to ClubPF and welcomed TACK Insider, a membership community packed with content and education and a private community for marketers looking to learn new skills and advance their careers. We’d love to have you, and it’s only $15 monthly or $99 yearly.

Let’s dive in!

Human intelligence is a multifaceted concept encompassing various forms that extend beyond the traditional IQ (Intelligence Quotient) measure. Understanding these different types of intelligence can help us better navigate personal and professional spaces. Let's explore some of the key forms of intelligence and discuss why emotional and creative intelligence often stand out as critical for success in today's world.

Emotional and Creative Intelligence in People-First GTM

In a People-First GTM (Go-To-Market) strategy, the focus is squarely on understanding and addressing people's needs and behaviors. Emotional and creative intelligence take center stage. They're important and essential for crafting marketing strategies and sales approaches that resonate on a human level.

Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

What It Is: Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive, evaluate, and respond to one's own emotions and those of others. It’s about understanding feelings, managing them appropriately, and using this understanding to guide decision-making.

Why It's Crucial for People-First GTM:

Leadership and Sales

According to a study by TalentSmart, emotional intelligence is responsible for 58% of job performance in all types of jobs. Leaders and salespeople high in EQ can connect with customers and teams on a deeper level, fostering trust and loyalty.

Customer Satisfaction

A report from the Hay Group found that salespeople with high emotional intelligence produce twice the revenue of those with average or below-average scores. Understanding and addressing customer emotions directly correlates with sales success.

Team Collaboration

Harvard Business Review notes that teams with high emotional intelligence have increased collaboration and stronger performance. This is essential in a people-first strategy where internal alignment affects external success.

Creative Intelligence

What It Is: Creative intelligence involves harnessing creativity to solve problems, generate innovative ideas, and adapt swiftly to changes. It’s about looking beyond the norm and finding new paths others might miss.

Why It's Crucial for People-First GTM:

Innovation Drives Growth

According to a study by Adobe, companies that foster creativity enjoy 1.5 times greater market share. Creative intelligence allows businesses to innovate effectively, which is crucial in a GTM strategy focused on staying ahead in competitive markets.


A survey by IBM among CEOs found that creativity was deemed the most crucial factor for future success, surpassing management discipline and integrity. Quickly adapting to market and customer needs is vital in a people-first approach.

Emotional Intelligence & People-First GTM

Emotional intelligence (EQ) enhances marketing, sales, and customer success by enabling professionals to forge deeper connections with customers, tailor experiences, and communicate more effectively. Here’s how EQ boosts these critical business areas and drives customer loyalty and satisfaction.

EQ in Marketing

Understanding Customer Needs:

  • Personalization: Marketers with high EQ recognize the emotions and motivations behind customer behaviors, allowing for more targeted and personalized marketing strategies. For instance, understanding that customers feel anxious about making large purchases can lead marketers to create content that reassures and educates, easing these anxieties.

Effective Campaigns:

  • Emotional Resonance: Campaigns that connect emotionally are more likely to resonate and be memorable. A study by the IPA dataBANK found that emotionally driven campaigns outperform purely informational ones on almost every financial metric.

Key To-Dos:

  • Segment Your Audience: Use emotional cues to segment your audience based on their feelings and attitudes towards your product or industry.

  • Create Emotionally Resonant Content: Develop content that speaks directly to these feelings, whether it's reassurance, excitement, curiosity, or security.

Questions to Ask:

  • What emotions do our marketing materials evoke in our audience?

  • How can we adjust our content to address these emotional responses better?

EQ in Sales

Building Relationships:

  • Trust and Rapport: Sales professionals with high emotional intelligence can read a client’s emotional state and adapt their sales approach accordingly. This sensitivity helps build trust and rapport, which is foundational for successful sales relationships.

Closing Deals:

  • Negotiation Skills: Emotional intelligence facilitates a better understanding of the customer's needs and concerns, leading to more effective negotiations. Salespeople can anticipate and address objections or anxieties proactively, increasing the likelihood of closing a deal.

Key To-Dos:

  • Practice Active Listening: Really listen to what clients say and, more importantly, what they feel.

  • Tailor Your Communication: Adjust your communication style to match the emotional state and preferences of the customer.

Questions to Ask:

  • What are the underlying emotions behind a customer’s objections?

  • How can we better align our solutions with the emotional needs of our clients?

EQ in Customer Success

Enhancing Customer Experience:

  • Predictive Assistance: Customer success teams with high EQ can anticipate issues before they become problems by reading subtle cues in customer interactions. This proactive approach solves problems efficiently and enhances the overall customer experience.

Increasing Customer Loyalty:

  • Empathy and Retention: Understanding and empathizing with customers’ emotions leads to stronger, more loyal relationships. According to a study by Harvard Business Review, customers who have had an emotional connection with a brand are twice as valuable as highly satisfied customers.

Key To-Dos:

  • Anticipate Emotional Reactions: Predict and prepare for potential emotional reactions to changes or challenges.

  • Foster Emotional Connections: Use every interaction as an opportunity to build a stronger emotional connection.

Questions to Ask:

  • How do our customers feel about our service?

  • What can we do to make our customers feel heard and valued, especially when things go wrong?

Cross-Functional Benefits of EQ

Improved Communication:

  • Clear and Responsive Interaction: EQ enhances communication skills, making customer interactions clearer and more effective. Emotional intelligence enables teams to communicate empathy, aligning their tone and messaging with the customer's emotional state.

Problem Solving:

  • Creative Resolutions: High EQ often comes with the ability to handle conflicts and challenges creatively. Understanding the emotional context behind issues allows teams to devise solutions that fix problems and leave the customer feeling valued and understood.

Team Dynamics:

  • Collaboration and Morale: Emotional intelligence fosters a positive working environment, which is crucial for maintaining high team morale and effective collaboration. This internal benefit directly translates into better customer interactions, as teams work together seamlessly to meet customer needs.

Key Takeaway

While traditional cognitive intelligence provides a foundation for understanding and engaging with the world, emotional and creative intelligence are at the heart of any successful People-First GTM strategy. They enable organizations to connect with their customers and innovate in ways that are not only effective but also deeply resonant. By focusing on these forms of intelligence, businesses can achieve a competitive advantage that is both sustainable and human-centric.

Integrating emotional intelligence (EQ) into marketing, sales, and customer success functions creates a competitive edge for businesses. It enhances customer relationships, improves communication, and fosters loyalty, ultimately contributing to business growth and success. By prioritizing EQ in these strategic areas, companies can ensure they meet and exceed their customers' evolving expectations.

Until next week, stay safe!


PS: What did you think of this one? Anything you’d like to see in an upcoming edition?

Nick Bennett 5 min

Emotional and Creative Intelligence: Keys to People-First GTM Success

Discover the importance of emotional and creative intelligence in a people-first GTM strategy. Learn how EQ enhances marketing, sales, and customer success.

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