B2C, or business-to-consumer, marketing refers to any activities used to build brand awareness and promote products directly to end users. Unlike business marketing, which focuses primarily on proving financial or operational value to a business, B2C marketing relies heavily on emotional appeals and competitive differentiation.
In the past, B2C strategies relied on traditional marketing activities including magazine, television, radio and newspaper advertisements. Today, B2C marketers spend a significant amount of time focused on digital activities. Using other strategies such as affiliate marketing,social media marketing, and omnichannel approaches, B2C-focused brands remain on the cutting edge of marketing.
Modern consumers are wary of marketing gimmicks and interested in conducting their own research to learn more about a brand or product. In stores and online, consumers search the internet for product specifications, price comparisons, and coupons. According to research from Forbes Insights, in conjunction with Synchrony Financial, nearly half of sellers observe their customers using online channels for research and in-store experiences for purchases. Insights such as this play a crucial role in changing the nature of B2C marketing.
Instead of choosing the most popular marketing strategies and hoping for the best, modern marketers look to big data and marketing analytics platforms to drive campaign activities. Non-salesy forms of marketing including blogging, native advertising, and influencer marketing convey emotional and practical value in a more authentic way.
In addition to ever-changing philosophies and consumer demand, B2C marketers perform in a highly competitive and globalized marketplace. Ecommerce platforms such as Amazon, and cost-effective cloud-based tools give small, niche brands the ability to compete with much larger competitors.
Timeliness, relevance, and authenticity aptly describe B2C marketing. As consumers desire a more personalized brand experience and technology progresses, this strategy may evolve at a more rapid rate than other marketing strategies.
IMA has compiled a list of over 3600 marketing technologies on Martec Showcase and offers several B2C marketing training options including in-person events, webinars, workshops, and consulting services.