B2B and B2C Customers
For the longest time, Retail, or Business-to-Consumer (B2C) ‘customers’ have been accustomed to, and driven by, fads, hype, distorted facts and price wars, to influence their buying choices.
Busines-to-Business (B2B) customers on the other hand, used to (and hopefully still do) represent the more rational side of decision-making. They use, what Nobel prize-winning Israeli-American psychologist, Dr. Kahneman refers to as System 2 of the mind; to critically assess requirements, study options based on price, compatibility and effectiveness, and then take a rational decision.
B2C is influenced considerably by hype, recommendations and price. And B2B, on research, facts, figures, and logic.
However, when it comes to anything seemingly non-core to generating revenues, be it personnel training, strategy consulting, social media marketing, and everything else in-between, B2B clients behave similar to B2C consumers. Easily influenced by hype, fads, and the fear-of-missing-out (FOMO). They often compromise effectiveness and/or quality for price, and sometimes, go all-out to buy an expensive service their business doesn’t need.
Many fly-by-night companies, including social media marketing firms, have made a killing, riding on this fear of clients. From creating shoddy social media pages, to fake profiles to like those pages. From winning awards by paying for them, or tweaking information that clients base their decisions on, they’ve done it all. Facebook discussion groups can be an amusing place to observe some of this. Over the years, I’ve seen young entrepreneurs ask for quotes for ‘x’ number of likes on their ‘vague’ business page. Someone else would be interested in knowing how one bad customer review could be diluted by ‘buying’ many more positive reviews.
There’s a buzzword doing the rounds in your industry circles. You don’t need it, but there’s a good chance you’d sign up and even pay for it. Especially if everyone you know has it, you probably don’t want to be the idiot who doesn’t. Even if it doesn’t make sense to your growth strategy. The number of large companies who’ve been sold a “customized” mess in the name of SAP’s world-class ERP, is probably growing by the hour.
You need to stop being naive and gullible. Think for yourself. And more importantly, always question your decisions and even the advice of others.
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An old cash register: image source