Kinder and Gentler: B2B Rules for the Modern Age

Kinder and Gentler: B2B Rules for the Modern Age

B2B marketing is completely different from B2C—or at least that’s what we are told—due to longer sales cycles, more complex solutions, more decision makers to deal with, and various other factors. However, the two are increasingly moving together and becoming more similar these days. In fact, B2B marketers can learn a lot from B2C marketing tactics.

Know Your Customers Better

One thing that you really need to focus on is getting to know your customers better. B2C marketers are well known for constantly carrying out research on their customers and finding out what influences their decision-making. Spend more time on research and you may find you end up making your marketing more targeted towards your customers by providing them with more relevant offers.

Focus on Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is essential for the acquisition of new customers in this day and age. You may generate leads from a whole range of digital platforms including social networks and your website. Managing these leads can be a challenge, which is why companies often use software to help them. For example, companies in the mortgage industry often use specialist mortgage software for this purpose.

Through managing your leads you can analyze customer needs using factors like search terms and conversion rates and then identify the best prospects and target them by personalizing the user experience.

Focus on Ease-of-Use

Your customers may be businesses, but the decision makers are consumers as well. B2B customers are used to the ease-of-use that they experience in their personal lives, and you need to tap into that. Your website should provide them with a useful and pleasing experience, and you can also use customer relationship management (CRM) software to improve your customer service.

Empathy is Essential

You have to understand the customers’ needs with B2B marketing just as with B2C. Your service or product should seek to provide a solution for your customers. They want to trust you, and you have to show them that you really know their industry and their needs.

Much of this involves spending more time and effort on building relationships over the long-term rather than focusing on short-term gains. Understand the importance of growing meaningful relationships with your customers and take your cue from B2C marketers.

Build Trust and Your Brand

Branding is so important in B2C marketing, and in some ways it is easier for B2C products to brand themselves. Make a consistent effort to invest in your brand and continuously deliver on the promise you make. Brands create an emotional connection with the audience, so focus on working on this.

Borrow from B2C to Be Successful

B2B marketers should borrow tactics and ideas from B2C marketers in order to be successful. As well as the areas covered above, that also means being consistent and patient, spending time listening to your customers, and making sure that your product remains relevant. So see what ideas you can take from B2C marketers and incorporate them into your own marketing processes going forward.

Michael Bird works as a digital marketing consultant. He enjoys sharing his insights online. His posts appear mainly on business, sales and marketing blogs.