Mastering the Mix: B2B vs B2C Content Marketing

As a content marketer, you’ll often hear about B2B and B2C marketing. While they cater to different end audiences, the distinctions between the two content marketing types are more profound. 

For instance, SAP and Nike have different content marketing strategies. The former follows a B2B strategy, appealing to other businesses, and the latter follows a B2C strategy, appealing directly to the end consumers.

A visible variation is seen in both business types’ most preferred marketing channels. See Nike’s content on Facebook, as shown below.

Nike’s B2C Content

Source: Facebook

It appeals to the end consumer directly. 

On the other hand, B2B marketers reported that LinkedIn was the top-performing organic social media distribution channel. See SAP’s LinkedIn content (below) that calls for fashion and tech businesses to participate in this new-age fashion show featuring Badgley Mischka.

SAP’s B2B Content

Source: LinkedIn

Read on to learn more about B2B and B2C content marketing.

What is B2B Marketing?

B2B marketing, short for business-to-business marketing, refers to any approach or content one company uses to reach out and sell to another company. It is commonly used by businesses that sell services, goods, or SaaS to other businesses or organizations. 

But what type of content do they publish? 

B2B content marketing creates and distributes information for business-to-business firms to boost brand awareness, traffic, leads, and revenue. It targets individuals or organizations who want to address a problem at their company. Their products include anything that solves a problem, such as sales automation software that makes B2B prospecting easier. 

On that note, B2B content marketing commonly includes blogging, podcasting, email newsletters, and infographics.

Consider Hubspot, for example. It is one of the most popular B2B content marketing examples, with an average monthly traffic of 50 million. Their strategy consists of blogs, newsletters, podcasts, video resources, etc. The brand publishes guides and blogs related to digital marketing to attract businesses interested in Hubspot’s sales and marketing tools.

Hubspot Blog

Source: Hubspot

B2B marketing and sales funnels are much longer, and more decision-makers are involved in the ultimate purchasing decision. Thus, they use various tactics to distribute and deliver valuable information. 

What’s their expected result? 

Attract, engage, and produce new leads and customers while retaining current ones. Hubspot has been using its B2B content marketing as an inbound marketing channel to attract leads naturally. 

What is B2C Marketing?

B2C marketing is aimed at individuals like you who want to acquire items or services for themselves rather than for a corporation. B2C organizations consider familiar people’s needs, interests, and challenges. These people frequently buy on a whim or desire rather than waiting for facts to be validated or an expected ROI to be provided. 

In B2C content marketing, you create a stronger bond between your company and target audience, raise brand awareness, and drive revenue growth. 

This is why B2C content is highly personalized to meet the intended audience’s needs, interests, and preferences, aiming to enlighten, entertain, and update them. The ultimate goal is to increase customer engagement and sales by instilling trust and displaying brand dominance.

Take Spotify’s 2023 wrapped for an example.

Spotify Wrapped

Source: Yahoo News UK

This approach naturally garners attention since people are eager to share their musical tastes with social media followers. It connects with the users in a highly personalized way, making the campaign a huge success.

Many businesses need help incorporating data into their marketing strategies. Spotify Wrapped is a brilliant B2C content strategy that leverages user data. The data is advertised to the audience and shared as a community-building exercise.

The Difference

Before diving into more details, let’s start by skimming through a few more differences between B2C and B2B content marketing.

ParametersB2B Content MarketingB2C Content Marketing
Content strategyB2B content marketing strategy primarily involves creating ROI-driving content types like promotional posts, ads, etc.B2C content marketing strategy involves creating impact and engagement-driving content types.
Content channelsThe best channels for B2B content marketing are LinkedIn, email marketing, etc.The best channels for B2C content marketing are Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, etc.
Content topicsB2B content primarily focuses on industry trends, best practices, and thought leadership.B2C content centres on the products or services offered, focusing on their features and benefits.
ToneIt uses a professional and informative tone.The tone is often engaging and conversational.
Target personasB2B content marketing usually focuses on a small set of personas valuing one common aspect.B2C content marketing is typically focused on many distinct sorts of consumers, even within a small specialty (multiple personas)

B2B vs B2C Content Marketing

Content strategy – B2B

B2B content marketing is more technical in tone and gives extensive information and answers to business concerns. Take, for example, Semrush. They are a marketing software company that creates various content, such as blog posts, ebooks, webinars, and whitepapers, to assist businesses in improving their marketing tactics. 

Semrush B2B Content

Source: Semrush

B2B content is intended to deliver unique insights and practical advice, establishing the company as a marketing industry thought leader.

Content Strategy – B2C

B2C content marketing usually depends on emotional appeals and graphics to engage with customers on an emotional level, sometimes through social media and collaboration with influencers. 

For instance, Let’s look at Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign.

Nike’s B2C Content

Source: Sneaker News

It is a classic example of B2C content marketing and acts as the baseline for Nike’s $39B marketing strategy. The campaign tells stories that motivate and encourage people to achieve their sporting goals. While promoting Nike’s brand and products, the campaign includes prominent athletes to establish relatability and pushes people to be the best version of themselves.

Content Buckets – B2B

Whitepapers, case studies, webinars, e-books, checklists, industry reports, ROI calculators, and testimonials are excellent for B2B enterprises. These formats are designed to provide detailed data and insights that can assist potential consumers in making educated decisions.

According to Statista, the best B2B content marketing channels include thought-leadership content, podcasts, influencer marketing, etc.

B2B Content Marketing Channels

Source: Statista

On that note, social media, email advertising, and LinkedIn are some of the most productive channels for B2B marketing. LinkedIn, especially, has been a vital part of B2B content marketing strategies. But what’s the concept behind it?

Over 65 million LinkedIn members make decisions, with four out of every five influencing decisions somehow. This means that consumers are open to engaging with and sharing material that offers fresh perspectives and sought-after answers to today’s primary concerns.

B2B decision-makers are impacted by both the personal and professional, making a business-focused social media site like LinkedIn the ideal place for your organization’s thought leaders to cultivate those personal relationships with potential clients. 

Content Buckets – B2C

B2C companies frequently employ more interactive and visual media like infographics, videos, and quizzes to draw in customers. A staggering 74% of consumers currently follow businesses on social media and spend a lot of time there: the typical user logs onto social media sites for 33% of their online time. In particular, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube are the most widely used social media platforms for business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing. Facebook is another popular channel for B2C content marketing, and 94% of marketers use it. 

Content Types – B2B

ROI is the main objective in a business-to-business setting. It’s the hard facts, the figures, and the concrete benefits you can provide that count. ‘What, why, and how’ of business operations are the main topics of the educational advertisements and promotional material. In a B2B setting, appealing more to sophisticated data than feelings is more effective.

According to CMI, blogs published in the last year rank no.1 under B2B content types. Let’s have a look at other content types.

B2B Content Types

Source: CMI

B2B initiatives focus on thought leadership, best practices, and industry trends. This entails offering insightful commentary, practical guidance, and knowledgeable viewpoints that address the particular requirements and difficulties faced by professionals in your target market. Case studies, whitepapers, webinars, and expert interviews have all been shown to be effective in this context.

Content Types – B2C

Unlike a B2B strategy, a B2C content marketing strategy is diverse – comprising emotional and informational content. Text messages, videos, and other B2C content are commonly published. Most content forms focus on the product/service, emphasizing their attributes, advantages, etc.

B2C Content Types

Source: CMI

Specifically, webinars, courses, product reviews, advertisements, articles, and product demos efficiently draw in and influence the audience. Strategic storytelling is another critical component of the most effective content-based initiatives. It has recently turned a buzz in the B2C space, making narratives the most effective way of evoking strong emotions.

Tone – B2B

Since B2B text posts, videos, and podcasts are intended for industry professionals who want credibility and in-depth information, in most cases, the tone is highly professional and informative. Most brands believe that it’s critical to uphold a degree of formality and competence to foster trust. 

For instance, let’s look at a VC firm, NextView Ventures. This B2B company releases a Medium publication focusing on “stories, analyses & resources to help seed-stage founders redesign the everyday. ” The stories are written with professionalism, informativeness, and engagement to ensure they read well to their target audience – founders.

However, more recently, even B2B companies are experimenting with catchy, quirky stuff, and it is doing really well. Consider Mailchimp’s Viral SEO Prank, wherein the company started playing around with humorous brand names like Fail Chips, Whale Synths, and whatnot. The key? Whenever you type a funny version, SEO tactics redirect to “Mailchimp.” That’s absolutely genius and not exactly professional XD.

Tonality in B2B Content

Source: Hubspot

However, some B2B brands are breaking the stereotypes successfully. While ensuring that their content is clear and exciting, some B2B brands like Slack and Upwork choose to go with tones like “quirky” and witty. This paradigm shift has been successful, and now B2Bs are getting creative with their campaigns, too!

Tone – B2C

On the other hand, B2C content has a contrasting, diverse tone. This is because it is conveyed to the people who aren’t just founders or investors but also to the general public. The audience, in this case, can be anyone. Thus, B2C messaging should become more approachable, casual, and amusing. The objective is to establish an emotional bond with your audience, which can be accomplished using storytelling, images, and a conversational tone highlighting individuality. 

Take Anima Aris, for example. The brand has an email list and sends exclusive updates to its subscribers. The tone they use is highly conversational and sometimes even Gen Z-specific. This helps the brand connect with its audience in a fun and engaging way, ensuring its mail always gets read!

Tonality in B2C Content

Source: Anima Aris

Target Personas – B2B

B2B companies typically target decision-makers at other companies. Your value is what attracts B2B customers. Prospects are looking for information to aid in their decision-making process, and they will value your efficiency and experience most. They are searching for texts and videos that are data-driven, instructive, and insightful and that offer value, insights, and answers to their particular pain spots. 

Target Personas – B2C

B2C content marketing concentrates on developing personal, emotional bonds with each customer. Since their target audience is often more extensive and diverse, the content must be more engaging, eye-catching, and shareable. While marketing to them, you must consider each persona’s unique requirements and concerns. 

To begin with, you need to group your customers into several classes that correspond to the personas you serve and determine the ideal moment, tone, and appeal for each. Everybody will choose a different approach to content. However, it’s more likely that your B2C visitors are motivated by their feelings. They want to enjoy their purchase and feel fulfilled. Having said that, you can use stories more because they are more likely to elicit the emotions that motivate B2C customers to make purchases. 

What Does Your Business Need: B2C or B2C Content Marketing?

There are significant differences between B2B and B2C content marketing regarding the target audience, content development process, and purchasing path. Both B2B and B2C content marketing are precise, comprehensive, and effective ways to reach your business’s target audience. However, several factors must be considered when choosing either of the two. 

So, which one is more necessary for your company? 

The answer depends on what you offer. If you sell products, B2C marketing would be more advantageous. However, B2B marketing is more successful if you work with other businesses or sell services, as it focuses on an area where your rivals don’t.

If your company is B2B, you should produce content for those interested in doing business with you. If your company is B2C, you should create consumer-focused content. The two kinds of material are very different but can work well together.

Businesses now utilize personas and focus on decision-makers’ requirements, wants, and motivations to develop content to increase conversions. 

How Do You Take Advantage of Both in Your Business?

Whatever business you run, you must be familiar with both marketing fundamentals. To accomplish this, you must understand the distinction between business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing.

B2C marketing is often easier to understand than B2B marketing. This is because customers search for things independently, saving firms time and money on self-promotion. 

However, this is untrue in the case of B2B marketing. These companies aim to offer their goods and services to other entrepreneurs. Therefore, they must understand their digital marketing alternatives.

While B2C content marketing efforts frequently depend on forging an emotional connection with the audience, B2B content marketing demands a higher degree of depth and detail to develop trust and credibility. Thus, the proper ratio of B2B and B2C strategies can help reach localized audiences and connect with them emotionally and professionally.

Conclusion

There is a growing convergence between B2C and B2B content marketing, which is happening quickly. Meanwhile, B2B companies put much effort into making their offerings and customer experience more relatable. But B2Cs are constantly one step ahead of the game because of their freedom and flexibility. Many businesses are adding B2C content marketing strategies like storytelling to leverage emotional connection with their audience. A content agency can help you bridge the gap between the B2B and B2C settings to make the best out of both content types. Given that they adapt their strategies based on the situation, B2B2C companies may be in the most excellent position to take advantage of them. 

Go To Top