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B2C, B2B and what they can learn from each other

Steve Olenski
Master Principal Sales Architect

There is a growing sentiment among many that the tried and true marketing designations of B2C and B2B will essentially go by the wayside as we collectively move toward a more holistic marketing approach AKA H2H or Human To Human.

There will obviously still be discernible differences between the two marketing mediums so my thinking is the old standbys of B2C and B2B will never completely go away.

It is under that guise that we reached out to some very special folks to get their learned opinions on the whole B2C and B2B discussion, if you will. These special folks I write of are educators from some of the finest institutions in the world.

NOTE: We queried these folks on a whole host of other topics, too including "What marketers lost sight of over the summer" and others. See below for more details.

As for B2B and B2C, we posed to two different yet somewhat similar questions to them:

What Are Your Observations With Respect To The Nuances Of The B2B And B2C Marketing Disciplines?

As a lifelong B2B marketer, and co-author of The B2B Social Media Book, B2B marketing makes sense to me. No matter what techniques you use, you are ultimately driving prospects into a buying JeffreyLCohen_Print-5x7_lrprocess where you can track where they came from. While selling through a distribution network can complicate things, a company sales rep, or someone no more than a couple steps removed away from the company, handles B2B purchases, making tracking possible. I have never understood how Coca-Cola marketers can track their efforts to sell a bottle of Coke at the grocery store or convenience store. This action is too far removed from their brand marketing and advertising to attribute action to particular campaigns.” - Jeffrey L. Cohen, Distinguished Lecturer In Marketing Analytics And Social Media, Ball State University

“Understanding analytics at its core can help marketers understand their customersJoshMurdock_Print-5x7_lr and community better. Data can be overwhelming until it’s put into simple terms, connected together, or able to analyze easier. B2B needs to look at the data of their customers or potential customers to understand how they can help them or bring them value.

B2C needs to bring correlation between what they are doing to unify their marketing efforts and how their customers are reacting.” - Josh Murdock, Professor Of Educational Technology & Social Networking, Valencia College

What Do You Think A B2B Marketer Can Learn From B2C Or Vice Versa?

“In both situations, the core premise is customer-driven insights. In B2B there tends to be fewer customBarbaraKahn-5x7_lrers who are perhaps more rationally driven in their decision making. Developing customized solutions can engender strong loyalty.

In B2C, there are usually many more customers, but insights can be gained from some customers’ experiences that can be translated or recommended to others.” - Barbara Kahn, Professor of Marketing, The Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania


"All industries can learn from each other—if they were willing to accept the fact that the basic behavioral patterns are astonishingly similar across domains. Every company does some things well and other things poorly, but they spend way too much time convincing themselvesPeterFader_Print-5x7_lr why their industry (and company) is unique. Instead they should actively look for (and celebrate) the similarities rather than hyping up the (surprisingly small) differences.

This is part of taking a truly scientific approach to marketing—constantly learning to find the core principles and their limiting conditions. This kind of cross-industry learning should be baked into the professional development activities for every company, but it happens very rarely.” - Peter Fader, Professor of Marketing, Co-Director of Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative, The Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania

Back To School

The above is a mere sampling from a brand new eBook entitled The Marketer’s Backpack a guide for all marketers this "school year" if you will.

As previously mentioned we brought together educators from some of the finest institutions in the world to get their thoughts, opinions, etc. on different subjects, to borrow a school-themed descriptor.

In our oh-so-humble opinion we think this is unlike anything you may have seen before. Of course we're a little biased. But download it today and see for yourself.


backpack screencap

Main image source: wp.streetwise.co


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