While many people think of businesses selling to consumers and end users, many businesses will sell primarily to other businesses. This is known as business to business sales and is often referred to by its acronym of B2B.
There are many subtle differences between selling to end users and b2b sales that can significantly impact how a business goes about its sales process. Businesses are often more sophisticated than the average consumer and are more knowledgeable about the products that they are ultimately consuming than individual consumers are and a brand often takes another strategy went they are primarily involved in B2b sales.
This is often displayed in B2B marketing which focuses on selling products to businesses as opposed to end users. B2b has many of the same goals as traditional marketing such as building a brand reputation, alerting customers as to the quality and product offerings for the business, and alerting their customers of the end products that are used. However, B2B marketing often has different strategies in place when doing so.
As an example, business to business marketing often involves the following that are often absent from traditional marketing to end users:
– Detailed specifications of the products and services that are being offered
– Technical data regarding how the product performs
– Statistics regarding how the product operates and the actual performance gains associated with a product or service
– Information regarding how the product can be delivered to the business who will be using the product (in other words the logistics)
– Other key businesses that use the products that are being offered by the company both in the field and outside of it, as well as their relative size
– The size and scope of their business operations including their revenues, size of their workforce
– The location of their factories and information on the distribution channels that they use
– Material sourcing data and the number and names of the suppliers who provide their products
– The time that they can deliver products to their customers
While not all of these things are always included in business to business marketing materials, some of these items are commonly referred to in these types of marketing materials as they can help their business customers to make decisions that include selecting them as their customer.
To accomplish this, business to business marketing is often personalized just for a specific customer as opposed to marketing blitzes by customer based marketing. Instead, business to business marketing often has specializes materials that provide insight into the company, the individuals that will be working on their products and helps to forge relationships that will help to propel both of their businesses forward. Some business will use marketing to explain to their customers the benefits that they have provided to them in the past as a result of their relationship through marketing materials.
For many businesses that sell to businesses these highly personalized sales and marketing methods pay off with repeat and steady customers who will continue to use the same vendors over and over again and which reduces the needs for these businesses to constantly expend efforts in obtaining new customers constantly. Despite this, businesses who sell to businesses will need to focus not only on client retention but also in attracting new customers with the aforementioned business to business marketing strategies.