The REAL Difference Between B2B and B2C Email Marketing #Email

By on January 17, 2014
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Is B2C email marketing different from B2B email marketing, and what are those differences? How will they affect your campaigns this year? Knowing what these differences are can improve your conversions and result in improved returns for your brand. That is why today I am zooming in on the real differences and why you should take note of them.

B2C stands for ‘business to consumer,’ while B2B stands for ‘business to business’ – both refer to the different markets you can connect with when utilizing email in marketing.

The Role of B2B and B2C Email Marketing

Email was one of the first forms of social media that ever existed in the digital world, and it is still one of the most effective ways to connect with customers, nurture relationships and improve sales. Companies that have responsive email lists earn more money online.

• The role of B2B email marketing is simple – to connect with businesses that purchase goods or services from your brand. The connection should produce a positive result, whether that result is sales, lead generation or engagement.

• The role of B2C email marketing is also easy – to connect with individual customers that purchase goods and services from your brand. The connection should produce a relationship with that customer, more sales and brand loyalty.

The Fundamental Ways B2B Is Different From B2C

So, your business has to decide which market to penetrate and focus on. Here are some defining differences between the two, that will give you a better idea which to focus on.

B2c email marketing

Courtesy of marketing-for-business.com

• B2B email marketing focuses on lead generation more than B2C email marketing, as getting immediate sales is not as important.

B2C email marketing focuses on direct sales, there is usually one click to the landing page and before you know it you are at the shopping cart.

• B2B email marketing uses email for relationship management in CRM and to facilitate sales. Confirmation emails, delivery details, updates and customer service are often primary uses in this market.

• B2C email marketing uses email for improving repeat customer sales, usually by getting them to take part in customer loyalty programs, newsletters or exclusives. This email is primarily used for discounts, coupons, competitions and rewards.

• B2B email marketing involves various functions of the business, like customer relationship management, surveys, feedback, complaints and tech help or assistance to improve the potential for larger company orders.

• B2C email marketing involves appealing to the individual by piquing their interest in certain topics, marketing to them via predictive analytics and recognizing them as a key member of your online social community.

From these examples you can see what the REAL difference between the two is for the modern social media marketer – scale. Both seek to improve customer relationships, loyalty and repeat sales. Yet they do it in different ways – B2B hones in on service delivery, and B2C hones in on customer incentives.

Sometimes a single business can need to cater to both kinds of email list, in which case you should invest in decent email software that helps you segment and sell to certain people.

What do you think the key difference is between B2B and B2C email marketing?

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
  • Marcus Tobin

    B2B is the way to go. If you’re in sales then I highly suggest you check out leadferret.com. Great site with awesome b2b sales leads.

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