In this article we’ll talk about B2B – Business To Business Marketing. Have you considered how a Fortune 500 company can provide new computers to its more than 1,000 employees?
They would never simply send an office manager to Best Buy to secure such a large order, but these transactions are critical to the future success of the company.
B2B marketing technology relies on the same basic principles as consumer marketing, but executes in a unique way. Although consumers not only choose products based on price, but also based on popularity, status, and other emotional triggers, B2B buyers only make decisions based on price and profit potential.
Who employs B2B marketing?
The core of B2B marketing is to build valuable relationships to ensure lasting customers. This is an important goal for any company, whether it is a large retail company or a smaller family-owned company. (See also B2C marketing).
The B2B market is the largest of all markets, and its dollar value exceeds the consumer market. Companies such as General Electric and IBM spend approximately $60 million every day on goods that support their business operations.
B2B marketing is mainly employed by companies that produce products that consumers have no practical use (such as steel). However, companies that sell products and services purchased by consumers and other businesses also use it.
For example, Sprint (consumer phone provider) provides wireless, voice and data services to businesses and consumers. In fact, the health care procurement network VHA recently agreed to sign a three-year, $1.2 billion contract with Sprint. Sprint remains the national leader in B2B and consumer marketing.
How large is the B2B industry?
Before you enter your career, it is best to reflect on the endurance and growth potential of the industry. Consider these facts about the prevalence of B2B marketing: Businesses, government agencies, and institutions make more than half of all economic activity in the United States. (Dwell and Tanner, 2006).
In 2003, B2B marketers spent approximately $85 billion annually to promote their goods and services. (Corporate Marketing Association) A 2001 study found that the dollar value of B2B transactions greatly exceeded the dollar value of consumer transactions. (Hutt and Speh, 2001).
B2B marketers can combine the two by positioning products in exciting ways, understanding customer needs and proposing the right solutions to effectively put their products or services in the right hands (see also Persuade Marketing).
For B2B marketers, it is very important to understand the needs of their customers before implementing any marketing or advertising strategies. In consumer marketing, effective advertisements can be published on a wide range of channels and attract a certain percentage of consumers to purchase products.
B2B Marketing in the interactive age
According to data from eMarketer, B2B spending in the United States will increase by 0.8% to $129 billion by 2012, while interactive B2B spending will increase by 9.2% to $51.5 billion. BizReport found that 86% of B2B marketing companies are struggling to use social media, while only 82% of consumer marketing companies.
AMR International B2B Online Marketing Evaluation and Forecast (2013) predicts that by 2013, B2B spending on social media will increase by 21%, and spending on lead generation sites will increase by 17%.
How is a B2B marketing plan developed and employed?
B2B marketing plans must focus on delivery and be widely used. This means that while consumer marketing can deliver very specific advertising (a mass consumer product advertised through print, TV advertising, and the Internet) to a wide audience, B2B marketing cannot. Instead, it needs to brand its own on very specific customers (via email, company image, and technical specifications).
Commercial marketers can develop and decide how to use their B2B plan by identifying and understanding the importance of the following topics:
Product or service: When marketing a product to consumers, there is an emotional component involved. Individuals are attracted to products because of how they feel. Among B2B customers, buyers are trained professionals who care about the quality of the product, its cost-saving and/or revenue-generating benefits, and the services provided by the hosting company.
Target market: Many B2B marketers can focus on niche industries that reflect special needs. Although this can make marketing easier, it also requires a high level of knowledge outside of marketing experts.
Pricing: Compared with consumers, companies usually pay more attention to cost, value and revenue potential. However, as long as B2B marketers do an excellent job of convincing them that the product, quality and customer service will be worthwhile, they can also more easily convince them to pay a high price.
Propaganda: B2B marketers not only need to be experts in marketing and advertising, but they must also be experts in their field. Once this happens, they will learn the best way to market through the field, whether it is through blogs, journals, exhibitions or word of mouth. B2B marketing rarely uses traditional media such as television and radio advertising. (See also promotional marketing).
What type of careers work with B2B Marketing strategies?
A B2B career requires marketers not only have a marketing background, but also have a deep understanding of the business. B2B marketers are usually creative people who like to deal with numbers, statistics and results. Because the industry requires a variety of specific skills, in B2B marketing, buyers and sellers have a variety of occupations.
Marketing managers – What do they do?
Marketing managers have the knowledge and training to manage and effectively formulate B2B advertising campaigns. They have acquired the marketing knowledge and management skills required to hone the specific needs of a niche market or industry and effectively market their products or services to meet these needs.
Professionals in the marketing field should have strong communication skills, but in B2B positions, marketing managers also need to have economics and business background. In this way, they can more effectively market to business and government experts.
Education and experience
Most marketing managers have at least a bachelor’s degree in marketing or a related major, such as business, advertising, accounting, economics, mathematics or statistics. Marketing managers usually start with entry-level marketing positions and then gradually get promoted.
See Also: What Does a Digital Marketing Agency Do?