Does Modern Marketing Apply to B2B Marketing?

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by: Jon Miller

In an earlier post, I described the key principles of Modern B2B Marketing, namely that Modern Marketers:

  • Know that customers control their attention and that marketers should engage when and how the customer wants
  • Create leverage by enabling and nurturing a community of customers, prospects, partners, and other influencers
  • Are left-brained (math and science over creativity and art)
  • Are accountable – and more influential as a result

Many others have discussed how marketing is being reinvented in a world where buyers can ignore a marketer’s messages and instead choose to talk to each other, where traditional methods of “spray and pray” marketing are being replaced by highly targetable, highly measurable, and highly accountable techniques. For example:

Notably, these authors tend to use B2C examples like Lost’s “Inside the Experience” online campaign, the Washington Post, P&G’s Tremor viral-marketing division, and of course “Snakes on a Plane”, and they tend to talk about the transformation of marketing channels that are primarily consumer-oriented – especially the decline TV advertising and the rise of social media sites like MySpace.

B2B Marketers Can Gain From Modern Marketing as Well

I believe that B2B buyers are as in control of their attention and buying process as B2C consumers are – if not more so. I believe B2B marketers can (and should) take advantage of online techniques and that they need to be just as left-brained and accountable as their B2C counterparts. In other words, B2B marketers have as much to gain from Modern Marketing as B2C marketers do.

So, the focus of this blog is to discuss new ways of thinking about B2B marketing, from best practices in lead acquisition and nurturing to accountability to community-based marketing.

What do you think? Do the principles of Modern Marketing apply to B2B? How do they need to change to handle the unique challenges of B2B marketing?

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