Knowing the difference between business to business (B2B) and business to customer (B2C) market research will make developing a successful marketing strategy easier.
It's a competitive world. And knowing as much as you can about your customer segments has never been more important than it is today. So when you are conducting your B2B market research, it is important that you focus on collecting and studying the correct information about your business customers.
In this article, we are going to take a quick look at the difference between B2B market research and B2C market research, and how understanding their differences can help you make sound marketing choices.
Vive La Difference
Before you set out on a market research programme, it's important to determine what your target audience is. This makes it easier to send the most appropriate messages and information to the correct set of customers.
Breaking your client lists down into segments is one of the cornerstones of marketing. And two of the most basic segments are business customers and consumer customers.
These two audiences require very different approaches. Ordinary consumers will be more interested in satisfying their particular needs by purchasing a product or service.
Business customers, on the other hand, will be more concerned with their return on investment (ROI) and how future trends will affect their ability to on-sell a particular product or service. So your B2B market research will need to focus more on the parameters that are more important for the long term.
B2B market research
Business to business market research focuses on the decisions that the buyers and operations managers of a particular business have to make. For example, a business client will want you to provide data backing up your marketing strategy rather than the 'what's in it for me' desire of an ordinary customer. With this in mind, your B2B market research will need to find out such things as:
- Your business client's customer base.
- How your B2B client's supply chain works.
- Future buying trends that your business customer will be looking to fulfil.
- The timelines that they are working within.
B2C market research
Business-to-consumer market research will seek to find out more about each individual customer. This type of market research will look at such things as:
- Customer demographics.
- How often they buy a particular item or service.
- What is the best way to engage the customer.
B2B Clients Require a Different Approach.
Your B2C market research can target your customers with on-the-spot surveys, focus groups and post-purchase questionnaires. This information is easy to collect but can result in piles of unwanted and useless data.
B2B market research, however, is much more focussed. You will be dealing with professional people who know how their company functions and how their customers behave.
Qualitative B2B market research
B2B market research companies will utilize qualitative research to engage directly with business managers to find out what their specific requirements are. This will involve face-to-face meetings but may also include an analysis of the markets that a business sells to down the line.
Essentially, you will be finding out what it is that your potential business client requires and how you can supply this to them.
Quantitative B2B market research
There is also an important element of quantitative research in B2B market research. This will generate information about:
- How well a potential B2B client's marketing is working.
- What are the optimal branding strategies to use in your approach to them.
- How you can match your media content to theirs.
- Upcoming changes in market trends that you can exploit to your advantage when you approach a business client with a proposal.
This information can be used to back up your proposals for supplying a B2B customer with exactly the right product or service.
PMGCO Knows How to Conduct B2B Market Research.
At pmgco, we know exactly how to undertake B2B market research and the correct ways with which to approach your business clients. We can design a comprehensive B2B market research strategy for your company that will enable you to collect the most useful information you can about your clients. We'll then analyze the resulting data and apply this knowledge to create an effective marketing campaign that your B2B customers won't be able to resist!