Ralf HallerRalf Haller January 11, 2012

What’s the difference between B2B and consumer/retail marketing ?

Had an interesting meeting yesterday with an equally interesting startup in Switzerland talking also about why it is hard to find good B2B marketers in Europe and if that is maybe the reason also why there are so few good IT startups to be found here.

Reading the book “Selling to the C-Suite” from Nicholas Read and Stephen Bistritz right now, I also came across this exact issue where they write the following interesting lines:

So it’s really not surprising that when we ask marketing directors in B2B organizations to explain their marketing mix, we learn that they are technically proficient at segmentation, database scrubbing, and targeting, as well as in using multichannel print, online, and digital media strategy. The names in the database are usually the right business contacts. And if their performance indicators are to release X number of press releases to analysts and journalists per year, run Y number of conferences and events to achieve minimum attendance goal, and pull Z number of leads from these conferences and trade shows, then most B2B marketing managers end their year feeling that they’ve done a pretty good job. And if they’re working in consumer retail companies, they’d be right. But not if they’re working in B2B. Most people don’t give this much thought because all through their career, marketing leads have been so-so, and they probably think that’s just how it goes. …

And to cut them some slack, how could they ever have been taught it when all the marketing theory taught in today’s schools is based on the household consumer goods model, which dropped the concept of problem-based marketing half a century ago?

So what is good B2B marketing is what needs to be answered next. Stay tuned….