How to Serve the B2B Side for Any Marketplace / B2C Company

B2C companies have hidden B2B aspects.

Let me explain:

I recently talked with someone who runs a payment app company (similar to PayPal), which people can use at eg. Walmart, Burger King, or supermarket chains to pay and earn rewards.

That’s a B2C company. They need to generate hundreds of thousands of users who download their app and use it day-to-day.

But the company also has a hidden B2B aspect on the backend.

Because the only way people can use the app is if big retailers like Walmart or chains like Burger King say, “Yes, we will implement this payment system in our stores.”

And these two different aspects need two different marketing approaches.

For the B2C aspect, they need to generate lots of users at a low acquisition cost and wide distribution. So Facebook and Instagram ads make a lot of sense.

But for the B2B aspect, this approach doesn’t work. A Head of Customer Experience or Chief Innovation Officer at Walmat will not implement a new payment system for all their stores because they saw a 15 second ad on Instagram.

To convince senior decision makers, they need to build deep and meaningful relationships with prospects. Show their expertise, demonstrate their trustworthiness, explain the technology behind the product, etc.

Here, long-form videos on LinkedIn and connecting directly with the decision makers makes a lot more sense.

This logic applies to a lot of B2C companies.

For example, if you’re a B2C company but you’re funded, you always have a B2B aspect: Generating investors.

Unless you already have a very strong network with infinite capital available, you constantly need to build new relationships with investors, VCs, and angels so you can get funding for your next round.

Hiring is also an important B2B aspect of every company.

Even if you are a low-cost e-commerce B2C drop-shipping business, you’ll eventually have to hire if you want to scale.

So you need to build meaningful relationships with a handful of highly qualified people who fit your culture, have the right skillset, trust you, etc. It’s a big life decision for someone to get employed at a new company. And once you hire them, you end up paying high prices.

So every marketplace and B2C company has B2B aspects, and you need two different marketing approaches to serve both aspects.