Dallas Business Consultant Elijah ClarkDallas Business Consultant Elijah Clark

Consumer vs Business Markets

In both business and consumer markets, the individual that will use your product or service is not always the same individual that makes the actual purchasing decision. For instance, a husband may purchase a product that his wife needs, or a parent for a child, or an employer for an employee. In these situations, your responsibility is to satisfy the decision maker(s) by providing them relevant information as to how your product or service can enhance their business or lifestyle.

Generally, when I walk into a jewelry store to purchase a gift for my wife, the sales representative will ask questions about my wife, not about me (until we start talking budget). In business, you need to ask the purchaser about the goals or intentions for the product or service, not about their basic needs. To make them happy, you have to sell the expectation that the individual receiving the purchase will be happy. When the decision maker is not present, you can generate more sales by focusing on expectation rather than the moment.

Business Market Purchases. When marketing to a business, you should concentrate on what is most important to the business which often includes statistics, facts, data, and a return on investment. Within the business market, the purchasing decision is generally made by multiple individuals. Your selling strategy should focus on each of the decision makers by way of the individual who sought out your business. This may include giving everything to the purchaser and letting that individual determine how to disperse the content to the decision maker(s).

Consumer Market Purchases. Consumers regularly make purchases based on factors which include value, availability, and emotional connections. In consumer markets, you will either sell to an individual or a couple. An example of a couple transaction is a husband wanting to purchase a new home. To do so, he would need to get his wife to agree to the decision. Similar to a business market, you need to sell to both but primarily satisfy the decision maker, which you should identify as you work to develop the relationship.

In both business and consumer markets, you can go a long way by getting the individual who contacted you to like you. If they like you and your business, they will fight on your behalf to influence the decision maker.

Bottom of the Pyramid Markets

The goal of developing and growing bottom of the pyramid (BOP) markets is to create mutual value between businesses and the community. To market within the BOP market, radical innovation is necessary in order to modify products and make them affordable for people of all income levels. The problem with this strategy, however, is that companies often fail to consider the perspective of the poor themselves. Businesses that mainly focus on top of the pyramid (TOP) markets are more likely to fail within the BOP market, as products created for the rich are not suitable to the poor. Consequently, the BOP market requires company’s to create unique business strategies for the BOP market in order to produce effective results.
 
Within the BOP market, companies have to determine new solutions on attracting the consumer and then provide an affordable solution. To get products to the BOP markets, company’s can consider the sachet revolution; a marketing approach used to package items within sachets that make them affordable to the poor. Additionally, companies should partner with local leaders within BOP markets to help with implementing a strategy. Microsoft is a company that generates activities targeted at emerging markets including the BOP market. The company partners with local governments, organizations, educators, and community business leaders to implement software and hardware into employment areas and the education system to help improve lives. Nonetheless, there is no single solution for creating a successful BOP market strategy and achieving success. Technology, global standards, and global scales must all be utilized to help solve the poverty problem. Firms operating in the BOP market have to utilize unique strategies to reach the market and learn how to do more with less.    
 
Income, prices, savings, debt, and credit availability determine economic purchasing power. The economy has strong impacts on consumers and businesses that are geared at particular income-based segments of users. The goal of the marketing firm or marketing consultant is to develop strategies that influence consumer purchases. Consequently, the marketer is responsible for creating strategies that can reach the desired consumer no matter the income level or location. Although the BOP market does create risk and obstacles that may be outside of a marketer’s comfort level, it does not mean that the market should be avoided for an easier, more convenient market. Within a BOP market, firms and marketers need to innovate and create unique strategies and products that reach the market and consumers. Within innovation, markets get ignored and business, and individuals are left at a disadvantage.       
 
Information and communication technology (ICT) can assist with developing bottom of the pyramid (BOP) marketing goals. Company’s can achieve their BOP market goals by creating strong relationships and open communication between local partners within the BOP communities. ICT can contribute to economic development and poverty reduction. ITC assists individuals and companies grow their economy, build opportunity, and increase process efficiency. If people within BOP markets do not have the opportunity to take advantage of new ICT applications, they will be disadvantaged or excluded from participating within global communication. In many parts of the world, ICT contributes to revolutionary changes in businesses and everyday lives of the poor. Providing BOP markets with the opportunity to use technology to communicate with one another and across the globe creates strong social and economical impacts. However, corporations deal with many risks as they attempt to restructure their business strategies, processes, and implementation into BOP markets.   

Consumer and Business Markets

Consumer and Business Markets
Business markets are task focused, while consumer market buyers may have an emotional factor when making purchase decisions. Moreover, in both business and consumer markets, the purchaser often does not have the final authority to make purchase decisions. In the consumer market, marketing methods may include advertising and promotions, while business markets can include necessary meetings before the final transaction. In addition, once a business purchases, there is the possibility of generating a brand loyalty for future purchases. In a consumer market, the consumer may base their future purchase on price, availability, and those continued emotional and personal factors. Furthermore, businesses often purchase in larger volumes. Consequently, the business market will likely generate more sales per customer.

Marketing Efforts
In creating a marketing strategy, product managers should be directly involved. To build a successful marketing strategy, the marketer should understand the consumers’ daily life and target their emotional needs. Consumers often purchase based on influences such as culture, social, and personal factors.  Marketing efforts should focus on building an emotional connection with the consumer to satisfy the consumers’ needs. In addition, marketers need to be aware of the consumers’ perception of the brand. Marketers can use integrated marketing communications to help with observing the marketing process. The company could focus on marketing to consumers from home by focusing more on their online marketing efforts. Consumers enjoy a comfortable setting when shopping, including having the ability to shop from home. Businesses prefer face-to-face sales meetings. To gain more customers within the tradesmen market, the marketer can advertise in electronic media and focus on e-commerce.

Marketing Approach
Consumer market purchases are likely made by individuals. An example of a consumer market is a husband wanting to purchase a new home. In order to do so, he would need to get his wife’s approval before making the decision. His wife will likely introduce personal factors, which may hinder his decision such as kids, bills, and other priority items. Consequently, he will not be able to make the purchase immediately because of these personal reasons. The marketer should create a campaign that addresses these personal concerns. The strategy could focus on the personal and family benefits that a new home would produce. It should mention the affordability, safety, and other family oriented concerns and then provide positive solutions for those concerns. In regards to a business market, this same strategy could be used to focus on the business benefits of purchasing a new business. The business marketer could showcase a better location, statistics surrounding the local traffic, and the return on investment. Within the business market, the purchase decision is made by many individuals and groups. A marketer needs to be aware of who has the buying power within the group. Once this is determined, the marketer should address each of the individuals’ concerns.

When determining the market, the business needs to know not only who are buying and why they are buying the product or service. The market purchasing decision for a business may be easier as there is a larger need. For consumers, there are other factors in to consider such as financials, family, personal, and priority items for example. For large purchases, there often needs to be a collective decision made by the family. Business markets often focus more on sales and purchases that are sold directly to other businesses, which may use those products to re-sale directly to the consumer. Consumer markets are markets where the consumer purchases an item to use for their own use. The strategies necessary for these markets are determined based on their needs and wants of the market. In a business market, purchases may also involve a collective decision, but there may also be a larger plan ahead for the company and the purchase may be one small item on a larger scale.

Within both business and consumer markets, the market must always be aware of the service strengths and needs of the purchasing organization. The products must provide value to the target market. To target consumers, the organization could use mass marketing and advertising methods to reach a wider audience base. Businesses are likely to also purchase larger volumes of items compared to consumers. Business markets may also have purchasing agents who are responsible for buying company items. These agents may already know the price they are looking to spend. In targeting the consumer markets, marketing agents should look to move online into e-commerce as it gives consumers the opportunity to make purchases directly from home or while on the go. Businesses often use more traditional purchasing methods such as face-to-face meetings. If market agents do desire to grow their online market, they have many options, which include services from Facebook, Godaddy, Google, and thousands of tools that can assist with targeting their desired consumers.

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