B2B vs B2C Marketing: 3 Differences Every Marketer Needs to Know
If you have worked in the digital marketing world, you’re familiar with B2B and B2C business types. But you might not be familiar with B2B and B2C marketing strategies. Most of the time, B2B (also known as business-to-business) marketing focuses on logical process-driven purchasing decisions, while B2C (also known as business-to-consumer) marketing focuses on emotion-driven purchasing decisions.
Here’s a breakdown of the three key B2B vs. B2C differences that every marketer needs to know.
1. Customer relationships
B2B: Build personal relationships
B2B marketing and lead generation focuses on building personal relationships that drive long-term business. So relationship building in B2B marketing, especially during the buying cycle, is crucial.
The top priority of B2B businesses is generating leads. Because of the importance of repeat and referral business, developing these personal relationships can make or break a business.
B2C: Establish transactional relationships
The goal of B2C marketing is to push consumers to products on your client’s or your company’s website and drive sales. To do this, the customer needs to have a near-perfect customer experience with your website.
B2B: Focus on relationships
Branding is a part of B2B marketing, but, more often than in the B2C world, it comes through relationship building. According to B2B International, branding begins with the consistency of the presentation and deliverance of your products or services.
In regards to B2B search marketing, being able to portray where you position yourself in the market and have your personality shine can help drive brand recognition and lead generation.
B2C: Prioritize your message
Branding is essential in marketing because it allows the marketer to precisely deliver a message, create loyalty with the customer, confirm credibility, emotionally connect with the customer, and motivate the buyer to buy.
3. Audience Targeting
B2B: Find your niche
B2B businesses usually work in a niche market, and it is imperative to understand your target audience’s demographic. To effectively attract them, compile and analyze accurate data.
B2C: Follow the funnel
Unlike B2B businesses, B2C businesses work in a larger-scale market, and the target is much more spread out. Search marketers heavily weigh the importance of following the marketing funnel when acquiring customers.
The buying process is also totally different when you're selling to a business and not an individual. Often, the buying company issues a request for proposals, or RFP, which outlines their criteria and which must be answered in writing by interested salespeople.
If you are selling in a B2B model, you need to understand the company's process, asking a lot of questions upfront to qualify the buyer before you invest a lot of time.