Need to Know: The Difference Between B2C and B2B Copywriting
Understanding the differences between B2B and B2C marketing strategies often helps make sure you’re following the correct route, and copywriting is no exception. It can be tough to differentiate the two when you’re focusing on a million different aspects of your company, but making sure that you write in a way that benefits your audience most is incredibly crucial to your success. To go back to the basics, below are two rough definitions of the two types of businesses:
- Business to Consumer/Community (B2C). These customers are completely in control of what they are going to buy, so it’s simple: learn about the product or service, make a decision, and buy.
- Business to Business (B2B). These customers are typically buying on behalf of a business or for a business, which means more than one person may be involved. These customers usually take longer to make a decision, and what they buy is typically a bigger, more long-term purchase than that of a B2C customer.
Regardless of how wonderful your copywriting may be, it won’t matter much if it’s written to the wrong audience. Once you determine on which type of business your company needs to focus its marketing efforts, you have to ask the questions: How do I cater my copywriting to that specific audience, and what difference does it make?
The Differences Between B2C and B2C Copywriting
Understanding the differences in copywriting for these two types of businesses means understanding your audience and understanding their buying needs and decision process. After you know what type of business your company is targeting, ask these questions about your copywriting:
- What should the tone of my article or articles be?
B2C: A lighter and usually shorter tone works great for B2C customers. They are going to act on impulse or based on their emotions, so keep them engaged and interested through a light-hearted tone.
B2B: A professional tone that focuses on the growth of a business works best with this type. These customers put a lot of thought into a purchase, so they take what you say very seriously.
- How many people am I writing to in the article?
B2C: This is usually a one-person operation. Write to one person and know that if you capture that one person, you’re probably set.
B2B: You’re almost always writing to more than one person. Many B2B decisions are made as a group, so make sure you appeal to people in all different departments, in all different points of the buying cycle.
- What emotions should I try to appeal to most?
B2C: Create something engaging and interesting for your B2C customers. If you craft a piece of copywriting that pulls at the heart strings or makes someone laugh, he or she may be more inclined to just go for it.
B2B: You want to focus on the logical. A B2B audience makes a decision based on factors such as increasing productivity, profitability, and how to reduce costs. It’s not necessary to write something overly witty and creative—just get to the facts.
- Where should I send out my message?
B2C: Social media is great for B2C. It’s quick, easy, and used by most on a personal level, as opposed to just for professional purposes.
B2B: In general, you want to get your message to the eyes of a department head as opposed to whoever is manning the social media accounts. You may want to send a direct message or focus on email marketing as a way to get ahold of those in charge.
It’s also important to understand that a company may need to appeal to both a B2B and a B2C audience. However, this does not mean that you need only one copywriting strategy. You need to have two different approaches and usually work twice as hard if you want to be successful.
So What Difference Does It Make?
How you write an article makes a difference because both types of companies rely on a customer reading and learning about a product or service. One of the most important things that the two have in common is that people who need to make a decision are reading them. Content is one of the only things that a company has when it comes to keeping someone involved, so the content should be exactly the type of content that person needs. You have the tools to analyze and understand your audience, so why wouldn’t you want to make your copywriting perfect?
Do you have any more tips regarding B2B and B2C copywriting? Do you have a story about mixing up the methods for your company? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
About the Author
Amanda DiSilvestro gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice ranging from keyword density to recovering from algorithm updates. She writes for HigherVisibility, a nationally recognized SEO firm that offers national and local SEO service to a wide range of companies across the country.