Marketing is a vast subject but the basic concept is the promotion and sales of products or services. In performing this main activity marketers or their parent companies undertake various other activities such as market research, advertising, sales promotion, distribution, product development and customer satisfaction.
While these activities cut across a wide spectrum of marketing activities the customer side of marketing is privy to what customers want and therefore marketing attempts to bring the entire resources of the company to focus on how to achieve customer satisfaction through its products and services.
One of the earliest marketing strategies involved segmentation.
Here, marketers segmented the market into industrial markets and consumer markets. The segmentation was based simply on the number of customers. While industrial markets involved a small set of decision makers as customers, consumer markets involved a large number of customers and each of these customers was a decision maker by himself or herself.
As developments in marketing processes evolved over the years the concept of business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C) emerged. B2B and B2C picked up steam as the tools available to marketers were limited and some of these tools were perfectly suitable for B2B markets while others were equally perfectly suitable for B2C markets.
A case in point is the evolution of TV medium as the perfect tool for B2C markets and personal contacts including direct mail as the perfect tool for B2B markets.
However, in recent times the strides made in technology through the internet needs no introduction as the entire world is enamoured with the power of the internet with its social media concomitants.
In such a scenario what should marketers and brands do?
One easy way to promote both B2B and B2C companies is to use the online marketplace to get more business and leads, sites like Snupit can be a perfect option for you in this case.
Alternatively, they can equip themselves by doing research and understanding how B2B and B2C processes have changed over time. To start them off the following pointers can help.
Increasing use of Social Media by B2B marketers
The essential motivation for this convergence is the ability of current media vehicles to personalise communication to target individual consumers.
No longer is the B2B market the only recipient of personalisation strategies. With active social media participation and use of appropriate tools even B2C customers can now be targeted individually.
Conversely, the social media habits of B2B decision makers come in handy for marketers in targeting them.
B2C to learn from B2B strategies
With the advances made in data analytics B2C marketers are now in a position to analyse individual customers and target them with lower costs of acquisition.
They can also now catch them at various points in their day-to-day life and probably reach them when they are ready to close a sale.
B2C customers are behaving like B2B customers
With the ubiquitous social media and the increasing use of this media by companies and brands B2C customers are now assessing the credentials of companies and brands and what their products and services can do for them as against competitors’ products and services.
Increasing use of automation
In handling large responses B2C marketers have relied on automation to sift through the initial ones and isolate the ones to target for the next level of contact in the buying process.
B2B marketers would learn from them to help their sales team to target potential customers. Automation helps in reducing the overall cost of acquisition of customers.
Increasing use of experiential marketing
In today’s technology-driven world customers would love to experience a product or service before committing to a brand.
This was the preserve of B2B marketers earlier where trials played a major part. These days B2C marketers offer programs which allow their customers to try the product and return them if not satisfied.
Coupled with the power of artificial intelligence, machine learning, social media and data analytics the marketing paradigm has changed inexorably towards convergence of B2B and B2C markets in so far as how marketers approach their markets.
They stand to gain learning from one another.[Image – Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash]