While there are many similarities between marketing to a consumer and marketing to another business, there are also many differences. And when it comes to creating a marketing campaign, it’s important to be mindful of your end audience and make sure you tailor your messages accordingly. So what are the key differences between B2B and B2C marketing? In this article we share the five main differences that you need to be aware of.

  1. Mind your language!

It’s fine to use industry jargon and acronyms when talking to your B2B customers. But when it comes to ordinary consumers, it’s best to use plain, everyday language that everyone can easily understand and relate to.

  1. Be clear about needs.

The B2B customer is likely to be driven by the need for efficiency, productivity and expertise. In comparison, B2C customers are driven more by emotional needs such as hunger, status, desire or cost. And so it pays to make sure that your marketing messages are directly relatable to the differing needs and drivers of the two markets.

  1. B2B marketing needs to be detailed.

Marketing directed at businesses needs to have the detail in it. This audience will be interested in exactly what your product or service does and the pain points that it will address. B2B customers need to be convinced of your expertise and it takes time and detail to convey a real sense of your authority.

Your B2C customers, on the other hand, are more interested in short and snappy, bite-sized pieces of information. And if you can make your messages useful and humorous and therefore shareable, then even better.

  1. The B2B buying cycle is longer.

When it comes to making the decision to go ahead with a purchase, B2B customers will be much slower than their B2C counterparts. That’s because approval typically needs to be sought from a number of internal stakeholders, including procurement, accounting and senior management. As a result the buying cycle often requires you to spend time nurturing, persuading and developing the relationship.

An individual B2C customer has an entirely different modus operandi. They make their own speedy choices in response to satisfying an immediate need.

  1. A contract for a B2B purchase will usually be long term.

Often a B2B purchase will involve a contract or long-term commitment of months or even years. This makes it a significant decision for that business customer. By contrast, the buying cycle of a B2C customer is usually much shorter and could be as little as just a few minutes depending on the product or service.

The bottom line is that although your B2B and B2C marketing is likely to have much in common, there are some important differences as well. If you want your marketing to be as successful as possible, make sure you understand these differences and tailor your marketing messages to the relevant audience.