B2B and B2C marketing are worlds apart, and it’s important to understand the difference before creating your own marketing campaign.
In this article, we’re answering the question: “What’s the difference between B2B and B2C marketing?”
We’ll talk about differences in marketing strategy, budget, customer preferences, and more, so you can craft the right marketing strategy for your business.
Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
- What’s the Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing?
- Key Differences Explained
- Choosing the Right Approach for Your B2B Business
What’s the Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing?
Before we get started, it’s important to define what we’re talking about.
B2B marketing (or business-to-business marketing) targets businesses (or more specifically, decision-making individuals within businesses).
B2C marketing (or business-to-consumer marketing) targets individuals— everyday people like you and me.
On top of this, there are a number of key differences between B2B and B2C marketing, from the overall strategy, to budget, customer behavior, the sales process, and more.
Here’s a table that summarizes the differences, which we’ll explain in the next section.
|B2B Marketing||B2C Marketing|
|Target||Targets business clients||Targets individual consumers|
|Reach||Focuses on specific people who fit a certain criteria||Not as targeted in its approach, goes for a wider reach|
|Decision-making process||Decision making takes time and goes through multiple decision makers||Decisions made quickly and often based on emotion|
|Customer preferences||B2B clients look for good value and ROI||Consumers look for good deals, good feelings, entertainment|
|Budget||Customers have bigger budgets||Customers have smaller budgets|
|Language used||Marketing materials use industry-specific, specialized terms||Marketing materials are geared toward a general audience|
|Sales approach||Customers often want to speak with a sales team||Customers want to buy without talking to a sales team|
Key Differences Explained
B2B marketing is created for businesses. Often, there are multiple decision makers at different levels of the company that need to be reached and convinced to buy.
On the other hand, B2C marketing is targeted to individual consumers who (in most cases) can make their own buying decisions.
B2B products often cost more than B2C products and require fewer sales to make a profit. Because of that, marketing efforts are targeted to a specific group of people that would benefit from the product.
On the other hand, B2C products are often marketed to the masses (think Coca Cola billboards and commercials), because they need to sell a large amount of product to make money.
B2B customers take longer to make decisions, because they have multiple decision makers that must approve the purchase.
And since they’ll be using company funds and will often make a substantial investment, B2B customers need to research thoroughly and compare options before they can make a decision.
On the other hand, B2C customers are independent and can make decisions very quickly.
B2C customers often react to a good deal or buy based on a feeling they have when looking at the marketing materials or product itself. (“A Coke sounds good, I’ll buy one now.”)
B2B customers tend to have bigger budgets to spend. On top of that, they often take a long-term investment approach, which means they’re willing to invest a substantial amount now in order to get a greater long-term return on their investment.
On the other hand, B2C customers usually want to save money. Since most people make a set salary, they have more limited funds to draw from when making a purchase (and it feels like more of a risk when spending your own hard-earned money).
B2B customers are interested in products that provide a good long-term return on investment or ROI. They’re not as concerned with getting a good deal as long as they’re sure it’ll pay off in the long run (by helping the business make more profit or save money on expenses).
On the other hand, B2C customers tend to be interested in a product simply because it’s interesting, entertaining, or makes them feel good. On top of that, B2C customers usually prefer a good deal now over a long-term investment.
Voice Used in Marketing Materials
B2B marketing materials are usually targeted toward a specific type of business in a specific niche or industry. Because of that, materials are written with insider language and specialized terms that a general audience may not understand.
On the other hand, B2C marketing materials need to speak to a wider audience, so they’re often written with the “everyman” in mind. These materials use casual, common language and phrases that most people will relate to.
B2B customers, especially larger enterprises, will often want to speak to a sales team before buying, whether to get demo, ask questions, or negotiate terms. Because of this, they will often seek out your sales team to get in touch. (That said, some B2B customers prefer to do research on their own and will resist talking to a salesperson.)
On the other hand, B2C customers generally don’t want to be sold to and will go out of their way to avoid your sales team. Making the sales process easy, automated, and self-directed is a better choice for B2C businesses.
Choosing the Right Approach for Your B2B Marketing Strategy
In order to make your B2B marketing strategy successful, you’ll need to answer these questions first:
- Which person (or people) inside the business do we need to target with our marketing campaign?
- What are we trying to sell and how much do we need to sell by when?
- What channels will we use to reach these decision makers?
- What kind of content will we produce?
- How will we move interested leads toward a sale? What’s the next action we will invite them to take?
- What is our marketing budget?
If you’re looking for a business to partner with to to create your B2B marketing strategy, Reel Axis is here to help. We have insider knowledge of the tech industry and have carried out successful marketing campaigns for numerous B2B businesses. Get in touch with us now.
ReelAxis is a global B2B marketing agency powered by tech industry insiders. We help you generate more leads through SEO, email, social media, digital ads, print and offline media, video, and more. Book a demo to learn how we can partner with you to make your B2B marketing strategy a success.