Catering for B2B as opposed to B2C
As PR professionals, we love to run campaigns and market products that change people’s lives and touch the audience. Notwithstanding the challenges involved, some claim that catering to people’s emotions is far more easier than talking to CEOs and CFO’s budgets.
Agreed! Tailoring key messaging around productivity, profitability, efficiency, cost-effectiveness, true ROI, etc. would not get media traction as much as a story on a skydiver breaking the world record for jumping with the smallest parachute.
…However, for B2B customers, the joy one can expect is by overcoming these challenges, being convinced before all about the product/solution’s value add, identifying and/or creating the need in the market.
One key rule, knowing what drives your target audience to actually purchase the product or deploy the solution is the single most important factor to success.
B2B public relations focuses on constantly developing the right key messaging, maintaining communications, and educating buyers – enterprises in most cases – about their product and how it is a game changer for their operations. One should remember, this is an extremely relationship-driven whereby brand awareness, trust and authority are kings.
The relationship with B2C customers is highly driven by human-to-human dynamics. It is here when friendvertising is excelling as a new marketing strategy on social media. Consumers buy products based on their quality, value vs. price, status, style, prestige, security and also what their friends are saying about it – on social media, of course. PR professionals know that they should target customers’ emotions i.e. make them happy, sad, angry, secure, beautiful, etc.
Nonetheless, as fun and easy as it may sound, the public is highly educated and influencing emotions is not the only factor here. Novelty in influence emotions and persuading customers have also changed the way PR professionals are going about their clients to sustain a competitive edge in a highly competitive market.
Key differences to remember:
- Drivers matter
- B2B customers look for expertise and innovation
- Detailed and lengthy content only work for B2B – although CEOs don’t have the time, B2C customers don’t have the patience!
- ROI from PR is faster to detect for B2C clients as the buying cycle for B2B is much lengthier and time consuming
- B2B products follow megatrends and their value last longer whereas the B2C cycle is shorter
When you keep in mind your target audience and media, you can never go wrong with that approach.