The global market of commercial offers is fierce and unforgiving no matter what type of business model you’re leading. Demands are growing across all marketing sectors while providers expand and are fast to make their attempt at outrunning the niche competition.
Business management and expansion becomes even more specific and nuanced because different business models require different types of marketing strategies and overall approaches to the target audiences, product presentation, and active promotion in the competitive environment.
Let’s take a detailed look at the major marketing global strategies that B2B and B2C businesses can employ respectively in order to keep up with the common market conditions.
Defining B2B and B2C
The first and major aspect affecting your marketing strategy is the clear definition of the purposes in B2B and in B2C, which are the two major business leading formats. You should already know the gist of each model by now, but just to freshen up the info:
- Business to Business (B2B) marketing is when you provide products or services for other businesses (companies, organizations, you name it);
- Business to Consumer (B2C) marketing is when you provide products or services directly to a certain niche of customers.
Each business model has its own specifics of dealing with target customers and promoting goods. For one thing, B2B products are usually more exclusive while B2C offers are focused on the mass consumer audience. B2B sales also have a longer sales cycle while B2C deals are either immediate or stretch over a couple of days. There are more both minor and major differences here, but let’s see which particular marketing strategies you can employ to promote both types of offers individually.
Essential Marketing Strategies for B2B
To get a full understanding of how marketing works for B2B, let's look at some examples. The most relevant and efficient B2B strategy aspects include multiple marketing efforts.
Common digital marketing for B2B
Various available digital communication channels, such as social networks, publications on various web resources, etc., help establish a more thorough, closer communication with target clients. The first and foremost B2B digital marketing effort should be establishing your business across your main medium of operations - online environment.
This includes creating and optimizing a user-friendly website or landing page, purchasing popularity-boosting ads in search engines, increasing brand awareness through bought, bartered, or gained third-party reviews, and even building a dedicated app that would, along with your website, promptly notify users about special offers and updates on top of promoting and distributing your commercial offers.
Individual marketing research strategies create the backbone of any marketing approach. Detailed research from market to brand will help you arrive at more informed decisions. As a result of a thorough study, you can define the main decision makers in your niche and compose a clear portrait of your target client, digging into their commercial behavior tendencies, common preferences, points of attraction and satisfaction.
Thorough research should also concern your in-house processes - you need to know exactly how everything runs and which efforts bring better results than others in order to optimize and expand accordingly. A B2B research strategy is usually broken down into primary and secondary studies, which means that you can either establish a direct communication with the target clients to get to know them better or gather the necessary data via specialized tools and online capacities we have today for further analysis.
The major examples of a B2B marketing research strategy include:
- Qualitative research - considering the complex, specific nature of B2B mechanisms, this type of study helps gain a more in-depth knowledge of your audience segmentation and pinpoint major decision-making factors in your niche in order to generate efficient product/service ideas and hit the spot in the market. Qualitative research can be conducted with the help of:
- Live or remote interviews with the representatives of your target audience of clients;
- Focus groups gathered specifically to evaluate the ideas and concepts you have on the agenda;
- Monitoring and analysis of particular client reactions to certain selling points, which can also include gathering traffic metrics across your commercial outlets and juxtaposing them with the introduction of certain marketing efforts.
- Quantitative research - this type of research is more about general statistics and mass insights gathered through collection of mass opinions. This is usually done via email, online, or telephone surveys, which can be simple checklists of dos and don’ts/likes and dislikes/desires and needs/etc.
- Secondary studies - also known as desk research, secondary efforts can help you gather more information through available sources concerning your target audience of clients. This includes collecting potential client contacts, descriptions, opinions, and other insights across:
- Profiled online communities, for instance, in LinkedIn, forum threads, blogs, review websites, and such;
- Business repositories and directories (there are tons of such resources online);
- Resources holding valuable statistical reports, such as Statista and Semrush;
- Government data sources like the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Census Bureau;
- Official company websites;
You can also use a variety of available search and social tools to boost the efficiency of secondary research.
Content marketing for B2B
B2B content marketing is about demonstrating your expertise and attracting clients with your industry savviness through content. It is mostly based on providing value and informing your target clients with high-quality, engaging content. This is also a major part of SEO efforts which help advance your digital offers in search result positions. The essential content marketing strategies for B2B include:
- Creating a blog - a dedicated company blog where you regularly publish profiled articles, product reviews, news, niche discussions, and other relevant info that your segment of clients may find useful and insightful can help you gain a reputation of a true expert in your line of work.
- Sharing case studies - case studies of your successfully completed projects will also add up to your company’s reputability as an industry specialist while also helping clients see in detail how many niche processes work in practice.
- Launching webinars - keen entrepreneurs and business reps (i.e., your target clients) are always fast to grab industry- or niche-specific education opportunities. That’s why launching an informative webinar should certainly attract a good share of attention.
- Sharing testimonials - it is a known fact that people tend to normally trust the opinions and impressions of other people they can relate to. The same goes for your B2B clients - positive testimonials of your previous clients should encourage and convince the following clients to turn to your services with confidence.
- Composing a whitepaper - a detailed whitepaper on the specifics of your business is always a great insight for potential clients looking to get a better grasp on the industry specifics. It may as well be published right on your landing page/website or in your dedicated blog.
Social media marketing for B2B
As the title implies, social media marketing concerns establishing one’s brand and promoting one’s products/services across major social networks and channels where millions of people gather for daily interactions. Popular social networks mustn’t be missed in your marketing efforts as they are really dense with communities dedicated to your niche of operations and individual potential clients alike.
The ultimate pro tip here would be to firmly establish your brand in such social channels as Facebook, Instagram, Telegram, YouTube, Twitter, etc. This comes down to creating an official page/profile in each network, using promotional capacities available there, creating and engaging in communities and groups, and leading active online presence. You can use your established “social HQs” to:
- Employ content marketing strategies by sharing relevant, useful content among your followers/subscribers;
- Conduct surveys and gather opinions of target segments of clients;
- Present your products/services most vividly with high-quality, eye-grabbing content (like images on Instagram and videos on YouTube);
- Connect with individual potential B2B clients and demonstrate a humane approach of your business.
Email marketing for B2B
Yes, email is still alive and well. More than that, it remains one of the most efficient ways to attract new customers and retain the existing ones by using an impactful email newsletter. Thus, you can compose and launch a regular newsletter that can either inform your existing and potential clients about the latest updates in the industry or promote your particular offers (or both interchangeably). Email comes in especially relevant in the B2B niche since most B2B companies use work emails to communicate with partners.
Essential Marketing Strategies for B2C
The most common example of B2C trade is an online store where anyone can purchase a product individually. Companies providing legal services to individuals also belong to the B2C system. Airline booking services, internet banking, online auctions, etc. - all of this is a business for the consumer.
The B2C system also has a number of marketing strategies to ensure successful operation in the market, most of which intertwine with the above B2B approaches.
Common digital marketing for B2C
In our day and age, you get practically unlimited promotional opportunities. Digital marketing for the B2C sector, similarly to B2B specifics, is all about establishing your company and offers it has in store online. However, with a more segmented, mass consumer, direct selling focus, you get to employ even more various tips and tricks, like offering free bonuses to purchases, organizing giveaways, providing discounts, and announcing sales. Other essential strategies include the following.
A marketing research strategy is equally important in the B2C niche, for promoting a product in a crowded market. Understanding the main pain points and common preferences of your target audience, you get to ultimately hit the spot in terms of the market demand and offer the most relevant products/services specifically to the interested crowd. There is plenty of ways to conduct studies and analyze important specifics in the B2C format, but it all comes down to the essential approaches we mentioned in the B2B research strategies section, like:
- Qualitative research where you conduct interviews with consumers and/or gather focus groups to help you validate product/service ideas;
- Quantitative research through online surveys and polls, which are somewhat simpler to conduct in the B2C environment because you can create a single survey that will cover a massive number of respondents;
- Secondary studies concerning the trends, tendencies, and other common specifics in your B2C market environment.
A more B2C-focused approach would be to also distribute samples throughout selling points or among regular potential customers and capturing impressions and opinions for further decision-making.
Social media marketing for B2C
Active social media presence adds personality to the brand. For one thing, through social networks, you can create engaging posts, photos, and video reviews that would surely grab users’ attention. In terms of the B2C format, you can get a bit more up close and personal with your target audiences, demonstrating an individual approach to every other customer and even engaging in common social networking trends.
Content marketing for B2C
Efficient content marketing is a whole science of using content correctly to strengthen your brand awareness and attract customers and sales by reaching out to other promoters and influencers. In the long run, it ultimately increases brand awareness and credibility with buyers. You may employ methods similar to the B2B content marketing, but add on top of that specific B2C strategies, which include:
- Viral content generation - people love viral content of all sorts and it is in your interests to induce your content with relevant memes and share content through most hyped-up platforms (the most vivid example here would be TikTok).
- Influencer marketing - you can team up with the top influencers to promote and gain more trust and reputability among the people that enjoy the work of that influencer. Influencers can help you promote by reviewing or recommending your products, making unboxing videos, sharing their thoughts on the free samples they got from you, etc.
- Video content - videos strike the attention of viewers much more efficiently than any other existing visuals. With an active YouTube channel or exciting Instagram stories, you can cover a huge chunk of the consumer audience. Other efficient visuals may be infographics that can be both aesthetically appealing and informative at the same time.
- Demos distribution - similarly to samples, product demos are great for trying out the ground you will be covering with the full-blown product and see how much the audience enjoys what you have to offer and where it can be improved.
- Buyer guides - as opposed to full-on complex whitepapers, mass consumers will most gladly receive guides that help figure out the specifics of, e.g., using your product.
Information is best remembered through stories, which highlight the main characteristics of the product more dynamically. This is a great approach in emphasizing all the cool advantages of your product/service in a more engaging way. And if you supply your story with eye-pleasing visuals, you get double the efficiency.
Both B2B and B2C marketing promotion horizons are vast and quite fruitful if you know how to roam them most properly. The above strategies should help you establish successful, long-running operation in your specific niche. Combine them and try new things, especially when it comes to silly at the first sight but very profitable new social media outlets and opinion leaders’ input. This will surely bring results sooner than you expect.