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Sales Prospecting Perspectives

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Where do B2B and B2C Sales and Marketing Overlap? What Lessons Can We Learn?



Sales Prospecting Perspectives is pleased to bring you a guest post from Beth Cohen King, Director of Marketing at Ve Interactive.

In a recent companywide meeting at Ve Interactive US HQ, we discussed Steve Job’s secrets to great presentations.  At the top of the list was: “Answer the one question that matters most, and that is, ‘Why should I care?'"  As sales and marketing professionals, this should always be our number one concern.  It doesn’t matter if we work in B2B sales and marketing or provide sales and marketing for B2C clients.  Why should our prospects/leads/customers care about what we do? And why should they continue to care? And the biggest question, what value do we provide?  As Albert Einstein said, “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” Therefore, value should be at the core of all our sales and marketing efforts.

Overlap #1: Finding the Right Leads

Qualifying leads in B2B sales is hard.  After grinding out the research, sending endless emails, and facing repeated rejection, we just have to do it all over again.  Getting leads to not only answer your emails, phone calls, and tweets, but also be willing to give a few minutes of their time for an appointment can sometimes seem daunting and unrealistic.  Teleprospecting and inbound marketing companies like AG Salesworks can help bring your qualifying lead percentage way up by using not only the best technologies but also the best techniques to target specified leads in their time of need.  For e-commerce companies that are selling to consumers, their issue is attracting and converting visitors.  With the same principle in mind, they must target visitors when they need your product or service.  Amazon and Google are paving the way for delivering the right information for each customer’s search.  Amazon is even bringing you what you want before you know you want it.  Yes, the future is here.  

What can B2C learn from B2B techniques?  

  • The right technology can help.  Acquiring new business isn’t just about how great your products are, but about using the best technology to ensure visibility and attract the precise target market.

What can B2B learn from B2C techniques?

  • Make your products accessible and easily consumable.  The same buyers who buy that expensive pair of shoes are usually the same decision makers at B2B companies.  Lose the complication and make the buying process simple.

Overlap #2: Sending the Right Message at the Right Time

Sending the right message at the right time can make all the difference for your company.  This means providing value at the time of need.  In B2B Sales and Marketing, communicating the correct message can get you the appointment, can move free trials into conversions, and can turn current customers into repeat customers. For B2Cs, this can mean sending retargeting ads based on searches, sending re-marketing emails offering promotions and personalizations, and providing real-time artificial intelligence chat boxes to provide promotions and additional questions to help the site visitor click: “Buy Now.”

What can B2C learn from B2B techniques?

  • Use your e-commerce site as a personalized salesperson.  B2B companies have active sales researching the best target markets, making calls, and guiding leads through the sales funnel.  Even without a personalized sales person, make your e-commerce site seem like a personalized sales representative for every visitor.  Make the experience customized and personal.

What can B2B learn from B2C techniques?  

Overlap #3: Creating the Conversion

And now for the moment of truth…  In the world of B2B, the conversion means signing on the dotted line.  Your lead has been changed in the CRM and will be on-boarded with your product.  They will be assigned an account manager who will guide them through your product offerings, or any other ways that your product works. For B2C, the conversion means your visitor just booked their anticipated trip on your airline, bought a coveted pair of shoes, completed a loan form from your financial institution, or donated to your alumni fund or favorite charity.  The world of e-commerce is big and no sector is without opportunity.

What can B2C learn from B2B techniques?  

  • Continue to make your customers feel valuable, even if they don’t get account managers to stay with them after they have bought products.  Make them feel like they have a contact point to assist them if they ever are in need.  Using product assist feeds can help continue to make their experience feel customized and personal even after purchase.

What can B2B learn from B2C techniques?  

  • Make the conversion process simple (or as simple as possible).  Buying from an e-commerce site is usually simpler than buying products and creating implementations for B2B companies.  Streamlining the purchase funnel to make it less complicated can help push legal or any other holdups in the chain.

We really aren’t that different at the end of the day.  Similar techniques are applicable for B2Bs and B2C and B2B2Cs. Choosing the best technology, communicating effectively, and simplifying the buying process will always be part of a successful business plan.

Check out our latest webinar: Loyalty Begins Online: Understand Key Drivers for Booking Funnel Success.

Beth Cohen KingBeth Cohen King is the Director of Marketing at Ve Interactive where she drives lead generation programs and branding strategy for North America.  Prior to Ve Interactive, Beth held various sales and marketing positions at iLantern and Stylesight. Beth has a MFA in Interrelated Media from Massachusetts College of Art and Design and a BFA from University of Nevada, Reno.  She is active in her community, being on the Alumni board at Middlesex School, and The Board of Advocates for the Connors Center at Brigham and Women's Hospital.  She is a competitive tennis player who lives outside of Boston with her husband, daughter, and rescue dog, Magnolia. Follow Ve Interactive on Twitter  Follow Beth on Linkedin.
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