What is B2B and how is it different from B2C?
While the most frequent sales occur between a merchant company and the end customer (B2C, “Business to Consumer” or “Business to Consumer”), B2B corporate sales ( “Business to Business”, or “Business to Business” ) is one that occurs between companies.
However, this is not a decision you should make lightly. The entire commercial strategy of your company must be aligned towards this objective in order to achieve this type of sales.
In this article I am going to tell you what exactly this strategy consists of and how you can implement it in your organization.
Characteristics of B2B corporate selling
According to eWorldTrade, The essential concept is very similar in both B2C and B2B: trying to get as many customers as possible belonging to a strategic market niche.
However, trying to get new clients in B2B is a much more laborious job, since we are talking about companies. It requires that your business model, as well as all the areas that interact with the client, are aligned towards this objective.
This is so because, on average, the purchase decision-making process in a company involves 6.7 people.
The good side is that, if the company agrees with you, a long-term partnership relationship is established in which both collaborate for a common good.
Think of it this way: if with your product or service you generate an impact in such a way that it manages to better achieve its commercial results, it is certain that it will continue to choose you. After all, that’s what B2B selling is all about – collaborative work.
How to develop a B2B sales strategy in your company?
The essential thing to keep in mind to establish a B2B strategy is to define your market niche very well. For this, it is important that you ask yourself the following: What need does my product or service solve better than any other from the competition? Where is the evidence to corroborate that claim?
Remember: what is “good for everyone” is not good for anyone.
This is called a Differential Value Proposition. It is what makes you the best in your class to solve a specific need.
Defining the niche of your B2B Company
Once the value proposition for your product or service has been made (in case you have more than one, you must do this analysis for each of them), the next thing is to define the characteristics of the companies that may have this need. This is where marketing research tasks begin:
- How many employees do the companies in the niche have whose need I solve?
- What level of income do they have?
- What is your geographic location?
- Which industry sector do they belong to?
These are some of the basic questions of any market research. The more specific and relevant the information you get, the better.
Remember that, unlike B2C, each opportunity has a first and last name. The more you show potential customers that you know their specific needs, the more likely they are to make a sale.
Having done all these definitions, you are ready to start your B2B business strategy. It’s time to take action.
How to contact companies for B2B sales?
One word: LinkedIn. Studies show that, for B2B companies, 80% of the opportunities are obtained through this platform. It is, without a doubt, the most widespread and used professional social network today.
The strategy can be summarized as:
- Marketing makes a list of the companies that best fit the defined value proposition.
- The sales manager connects with relevant company employees via LinkedIn.
- Once they have accepted, they are sent a message that generates interest (using the value proposition) with a very clear call to action: request their email or telephone number.
Once the first contact is made and interest generated, the process continues in much the same way as other business processes. You just have to keep in mind that, unlike B2C, active listening and a long-term collaborative work environment and mutual help should predominate in the conversation with each potential client.
B2B selling involves a complete mindset change. We are no longer going out to offer our products to a wide market where each client adds a number in our commercial objective.
You have to understand that for a B2B business model to work, the success of each client is paramount. Conversations with more of the collaborative type, and it is essential that mutual benefit is always sought.
The good news is that today, with the spread of the internet and the adoption of LinkedIn, this model is fully accessible for companies of any size and niche.