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How is Marketing Automation Different for B2B Businesses?

02/13/18, 9:30 AM

 Upper view of business people around table

Marketing automation. The process is the same for all businesses, right?
Not exactly.
B2B marketing automation actually differs quite radically from B2C automation. Here’s how.

The Goals

Every marketing automation strategy has to start with goals. The goal of B2C and B2B businesses is largely the same: to make sales (duh!) On a more nuanced level, the steps to achieving that goal are wildly different.

                B2C Goal & Tactics: Revenue generated through brand-building and customer journey-making.

                B2B Goal & Tactics: Revenue driven by lead generation and lead nurturing via content.


Why is the B2B Automation Process So Different?

It’s all in the way sales decisions are made. B2B companies take a long time to make purchasing decisions. There’s usually a lot of red tape involved and probably dozens of people weighing in on any given purchasing decision. Particularly for high-value goods and services, purchasing cycles can be on an annual basis or even dependent on internal RFP scheduling.


How Does Successful B2B Automation Work?

B2B automation works by appealing to the organization’s goals, not the individual’s. B2B customers aren’t necessarily looking for customized, fuzzy-wuzzy content. They want to be served information that’s relevant to the specific problems their business is facing. Decisions aren’t always made by the same measuring stick as the one consumers use; B2B brands care less about the short-term cost than the long-term objectives of their business.

B2B marketing automation is inherently broader in scope than B2C. B2B workflows, content, and CTAs must appeal to a wider audience. They’re often driven by the intention to educate or engage with the consumer, not incentivize. The B2B lead nurturing process is a slow burn whereas B2C customers might make purchasing decisions on the spur of the moment.

Marketing automation by B2B businesses is always, always based around data. Not anecdotal gut feelings about what will “play well” with a given audience, but data that points to where the decision makers are and what they want to know. For B2B brands, the process of automation is a calculated strategy, not a shot in the dark.


Do B2B Brands Need to Work with B2B Marketers?

In an ideal world, yes. Marketers with a focus on B2B automation understand the unique characteristics of successful business campaigns. They recognize the common pain points within the business purchasing process and base their actions around long-term results, not quick wins. B2B marketers play the long game.

Synchronicity is an industry-leader in B2B marketing automation. With a focus on manufacturing and industrial clientele, our digital experts are constantly innovating the way B2B brands generate leads and drive sales.


If your marketing automation process feels like it’s broken, reach out. We’re ready to talk to you about implementing a comprehensive plan unique to your market. Your business isn’t one-size-fits-all, and your automation process shouldn’t be, either.


Topics: Marketing Automation, Digital Marketing, B2B Businesses