How B2B vs. B2C Marketing Strategies Are Different

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Did you know that the average business has increased its advertising and marketing budgets by nearly 10% in the past year? Are you considering improving your marketing strategy this year but don’t know where to start? 

If so, then you’re in the right place. We’re breaking down how to create the perfect strategy for both B2B and B2C companies. So, keep reading to learn everything you need to know about the differences between B2B vs B2C marketing. 

What Is B2B Marketing? 

Before we jump into the nuts and bolts of B2B marketing, let’s ensure we’re on the same page when defining marketing. Marketing is the act (or series of actions) you’ll take to attract your ideal target audience and engage with them with the goal to sell your product or service. 

In the business-to-business model, you’re selling your products or services to other businesses. So your marketing strategy will be different from what you probably think of when it comes to traditional marketing. In B2B marketing, you’re selling larger contracts that you’ll fulfill over a longer timeline. 

Therefore, you’ll need to create a strategy that focuses on the long term. You’ll also need to account for the fact that your target audience might not be the ultimate decision-maker. Your goal for B2B marketing is to add value for your potential customers with the ultimate aim to convert them into buying customers. 

What Is B2C Marketing? 

When we picture traditional marketing or advertising you might envision a scene from Mad Men. We think of advertisers sitting in a boardroom creating the perfect television commercial to grow their business. However, in today’s consumer market, B2C marketing has been transformed into a series of interactions to attract your ideal audience, usually done online.

Never before have marketers had such an intimate connection with their target audience as you can now with social media. You can now engage with your customers while they sit in their living room, on the morning train, or even at their kid’s soccer practice.  

In B2C marketing, your content will attract the consumer using your product or service. These transactions are usually smaller and a one-time event. Therefore your strategy will differ greatly. We’ll jump into those specific differences in the next section. 

Difference Between B2B vs B2C

Regardless of your business model, your goal is always the same: to grow your business and brand year-over-year. However, how you accomplish this will differ based on who you sell your product or service to. 

We’ve broken down the four main areas in which your marketing strategy will differ based on B2B vs B2C models. 

Educate vs Entertain

One of the most significant differences in your marketing strategy for B2B vs B2C is the main goal for your digital content marketing. In the B2B business model, your marketing strategy will educate your target audience about your product or service. Some examples of B2B content marketing include: 

  • White papers
  • Case studies
  • Monthly or quarterly newsletters

In the B2C model, however, you need to catch your audience’s attention in a crowded online space. And the best way to do that is to entertain them. Some examples of B2C content marketing include: 

  • Social media posts and videos
  • Blog posts
  • Weekly emails

For both B2B and B2C content marketing you can also create how-to videos for YouTube, work with influencers on social media, and focus on SEO with your website and blog. 

Timeline for the Sales Cycle

In the B2C model, your sales cycle is usually fairly straightforward and in a straight line. Your audience will move directly from interest or awareness to consideration and decision in a much shorter timeline. 

However, in the B2B model, you’re dealing with many different stakeholders and larger contracts. This means that the sales cycle will be much longer than the B2C counterpart.

Your B2B marketing strategies will need to include options for both in-person and online interactions. It will also include much more back-and-forth between your buyer and your sales team. You’ll need marketing material for each step along the way you can offer your target audience to take back to their decisionmaker. 

Decision Maker and Target Audience

As discussed earlier, you have a very different target audience depending on if you’re marketing to businesses or consumers. In the B2B model, you’ll likely work with and attract someone within the company who isn’t the final decision-maker.

For example, you likely won’t target the C-level executives of a company with your marketing. Instead, you’ll work with a lower-level executive who will need to consult with others on their team along with upper management before making a decision. This will entail a much longer sales cycle as mentioned above and involve many different stakeholders. 

However, if you’re target audience is the consumer, you’re marketing directly to both the user of your product or service along with the main decision-maker. This will allow you to create content that not only attracts and entertains your audience but closes the sales as well. 

Customer Service After the Sale

The sales cycle doesn’t end with the sale. You must maintain quality customer service long after the ink has dried on a contract. Your customer service requirements will look different for B2B vs B2C business models. 

Many times in the B2C model you’ll likely have many one-time customers. Whereas the B2B model lends itself to long-term contracts and long-lasting relationships with your customers.  

As a B2C company, you’ll want to focus on creating an FAQ page and offering a digital chatbot on your website. However, if you serve other businesses, each customer will likely require a dedicated associate that works with each client.

You don’t want frustrated clients who keep having to repeat themselves to different customer service associates. So, design your customer service team to offer individual and personalized service to specific customers. This will give continuity and the best customer service to your top B2B clients. 

Create Your Dynamic Digital Presence With the Right Marketing Strategy

As you can see there are several differences between B2B vs B2C marketing strategies. Based on your business model, you’ll need to create different types of content to reach your audience.

If you’re ready to take your marketing strategy to the next level, then you need to work with a professional. We help our customers create a winning marketing strategy to bring in more leads and convert them to paying clients every day. We can show you in your free consultation how our practical strategies can help you reach your goals. 

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