Difference Between B2C and B2B Lead Generation

June 29, 2016

By June 29, 2016insights
b2b lead generation

Every business needs to have a lead generation strategy in order to generate the sales online. However, the difference between B2C and B2B lead generation companies have key differences.

By understanding the differences in B2B and B2C lead generation, you can improve the results of your efforts. Below we discuss 5 ways that they differ and how to use this to your business’ advantage.

Differences Between B2C and B2B Lead Generation Companies

  1. Sales cycle length- The most obvious difference is that B2C companies generally have a shorter sales cycle than B2B lead generation companies. B2B companies must therefore be more strategic, since they do not have the luxury of quick results.

Conversely, B2C have a shorter, more transactional cycle that means less money, but lower revenue sources. While B2B businesses can spend more money acquiring a customer, because they can still get a positive ROI. B2C marketers have to be more conscientious, since the returns are not as great.

  1. Content Types- B2B content uses case studies, blog posts, white papers, and other long-form content to provide the knowledge necessary to help customers make an educated decision on the services they provide.

B2C content on the other hand uses more promotions, unique offers, and personal messages. They are used to incite people to purchase your services.

If you need help deciding the appropriate content for your lead generation efforts, give us a Shout so we can help!

  1. Understand the Audience – B2B and B2C lead generation differences usually comes down to the type of market you want to sell. To do this you need to understand your audience and where they hang out.

For example, if you are a B2C company you want to use social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to find the right prospects.

On the other hand, LinkedIn is a great option for B2B companies, because the decision makers utilise the network. The content types you create in the previous point will generally match the audience you find in the different social networks.

  1. Sales or Leads– B2C has smaller transactions and faster lead generation processes, so the goal online is for prospects to purchase your goods while on your site or third party platform.

Alternatively, the larger nature of B2B services and products makes it unlikely that you will close sales directly on the internet.

B2B lead generation starts on the web and usually moves to an offline process. While this is not always the case, customers need to talk with the company to get their questions answered.

This is because B2B lead generation requires more relationship building. That is because in order to stand out in most B2B fields you need to build up personal relationships. Otherwise, prospects cannot know, like, and trust your services.

  1. Generating Inbound Traffic– Twenty years ago most B2C business was generated from interruption marketing. While it still plays a prominent role in marketing, unsolicited calls at dinner time and other invasive marketing strategies have become a thing of the past.

Obviously, most consumers do not like being interrupted in the middle of dinner or any other time of day to buy someone’s products. Generating inbound leads online is a great way to finding willing and eager customers.

While B2B interruption marketing still works in some cases, it is more common today to see businesses looking to use inbound lead generation strategies to generate leads. Recent data from the Content Marketing Institute shows that 84% of B2B marketers use online traffic for branding, while 83% use it for lead generation.

Quality B2B lead generation marketing understands that generating leads is as much about building the long-term credibility of the company as it is about the instant sales.

Bonus: Referrals and Repeat Business – Lead generation is not just for new leads. Many B2C companies use the lead generation process not only to bring in new leads, also use it for marketing to current customers.

The same Content Marketing Institute report mentioned above discovered that 88% of B2C marketers also use lead generation for customer loyalty and retention.

In essence, B2C companies focus as much on getting customers to come back to them as they do on new business. Due to the transactional nature of B2C this makes sense. They need more sales, which means more customers buying items repeatedly throughout the process.

Final Thoughts

While many lead generation strategies are similar for B2B and B2C companies, a number of differences do exist. By understanding exactly how these differences impact your lead generation process you can set up a strategy that works best for your specific needs.

If you have additional questions about how to do this, please contact us at Shout for a free initial consultation.