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Book part
Publication date: 9 August 2018

Anna-Greta Nyström, Jan-Åke Törnroos, Nikolina Koporcic and Maria Ivanova-Gongne

This final chapter of the book provides an up-to-date overview of research on B2B branding. The chapter discusses the current academic endeavors and propositions from…

Abstract

This final chapter of the book provides an up-to-date overview of research on B2B branding. The chapter discusses the current academic endeavors and propositions from researchers in the field, while focusing on the discipline of B2B marketing. It furthermore elaborates on the importance of brands and branding for decision-making processes by discussing the role of B2B buyers and sellers. Additionally, branding as part of marketing has been reviewed from its historical background and the first attempts to develop its conceptual background. The chapter then focuses on business buyers and their main characteristics with regard to brand relevance. Finally, the key challenges of developing a strong B2B brand are presented and discussed, after which future research avenues and upcoming trends within the B2B branding context are considered. Digitalization and the digital context are identified as important areas to know in the future, as they are increasingly becoming important stages for marketing activities within the B2B domain. The digital context is a specific platform to explore further. In addition, the intangible aspects of B2B branding that are still unknown to many managers and academics, such as emotions in situations of interaction and sales are explored. From a thematic point of view, sustainability issues will become increasingly important to handle in organizations, which will put pressure on B2B marketers, as sustainability can be communicated through the corporate brand and related branding efforts.

Details

Developing Insights on Branding in the B2B Context
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-276-9

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 November 2021

David Marius Gligor, Ismail Golgeci, Carla Rego, Ivan Russo, Sıddık Bozkurt, Terrance Pohlen, Brian Hiatt and Vipul Garg

The purpose of this paper is to build on recent efforts occurring within business-to-business (B2B) marketing research to advance methodological developments. As phenomena…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to build on recent efforts occurring within business-to-business (B2B) marketing research to advance methodological developments. As phenomena within B2B relationships have become increasingly complex, marketing scholars have begun to point out the limitations associated with correlation-based methodological approaches and highlight the need for new developments in this area. One such development is the fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA).

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses a literature review to examine the use of fsQCA in B2B marketing research.

Findings

First, the current manuscript presents the benefits that the application of fsQCA can offer to market researchers investigating B2B phenomena. Second, the paper presents the current state of fsQCA use within B2B marketing. Third, it suggests possible marketing B2B research topics that can be explored using fsQCA.

Originality/value

The study highlights the benefits of fsQCA, presents the current state of fsQCA use within B2B marketing and offers a rich future research agenda for B2B marketing scholars. This agenda can also help spur additional method developments in the discipline.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 37 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 February 2012

Sharad Sarin

This paper aims to review the author's association with the discipline of business‐to‐business (B2B) marketing for nearly 40 years. Of these, 34 were spent teaching in a…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to review the author's association with the discipline of business‐to‐business (B2B) marketing for nearly 40 years. Of these, 34 were spent teaching in a postgraduate institute, i.e. the Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI), Jamshedpur, India.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is organized around nine lenses for reflection. These provide a comprehensive coverage of the author's experiences. The paper critically evaluates the author's performance as a B2B marketing instructor, researcher, trainer and consultant. It examines the evolution of B2B markets and marketing in India and traces the symbiotic relationship between academics and practice.

Findings

The reflection reveals that B2B marketing practices have benefited and improved a great deal in India due to interventions from academia. However, the most disturbing aspect of B2B marketing practices in India is all‐pervasive corruption. There seems to be no solution for it.

Practical implications

An important audience for this paper is young faculty members. It is hoped the paper will be able to motivate them for more research and publications. The challenge for B2B marketing is to fuel the declining interest in the discipline. The B2B marketing discipline in India needs more faculty members, and substantial home‐grown research articles and cases.

Originality/value

The paper illustrates that the Indian B2B scenario has changed a great deal: the impact of competition and globalisation has transformed B2B marketing practices beyond recognition.

Article
Publication date: 23 March 2020

Neeraj Pandey, Preeti Nayal and Abhijeet Singh Rathore

This study aims to analyze the available literature on the use of digital marketing in a business-to-business (B2B) context. It identifies gaps in the current research…

14021

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to analyze the available literature on the use of digital marketing in a business-to-business (B2B) context. It identifies gaps in the current research knowledge and proposes a research agenda for scholars and practitioners.

Design/methodology/approach

A systematic literature review has been conducted on B2B digital marketing. The various themes have been identified on the basis of the comprehensive analysis of extant literature. Also, semi-structured interviews with B2B marketing experts were also conducted to further refine the emerged digital marketing themes.

Findings

Although some B2B firms use digital marketing, most are unable to leverage its full benefits because of the dearth of comprehensive research on the subject. This review provides an insight into the emerging themes by developing a collaborative conceptual framework. The review highlights that few areas such as digital marketing communication and sales management have witnessed steady development while decision support systems, critical success factors, electronic marketing orientation (EMO), etc., were lesser explored. Furthermore, it identifies research gaps and highlights the emerging research themes for future researchers.

Practical implications

The collaborative framework will help organizations to align their digital marketing activities as per the changing market dynamics such as the focus on building social media capability, EMO and value co-creation.

Originality/value

Research on the use of digital marketing by B2B firms is still at the embryonic stage. This study is a pioneering effort to review the use of digital marketing in B2B organizations and identify research priorities for scholars and practitioners.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 May 2020

Susana C. Silva, Paulo Alexandre Oliveira Duarte and Sara Resende Almeida

The purpose of this study is to understand and compare how business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) companies evaluate the return on investment (ROI) on…

3753

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand and compare how business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) companies evaluate the return on investment (ROI) on their social media marketing (SMM) programmes and how the investment is handled in these type of marketing programmes.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-methods approach involving multiple cases and a survey was used. Data were collected from personal interviews with eight professionals responsible for SMM management, from four B2B and four B2C companies, complemented with responses to a web-based survey by the other 28 companies’ marketing managers.

Findings

The results show that there are some differences between B2B and B2C companies regarding SMM evaluation and investment but in general marketing managers for both types of firms use simple metrics to evaluate their SMM programmes. The main measures used relate to awareness, engagement and reach and most of the metrics identified are interaction-related.

Research limitations/implications

Given the complex and sensitive nature of the subject, more research is needed focussed on providing additional evidence from a larger sample of B2B and B2C organizations to allow the extension of the finding to the population as the non-probabilistic nature and size of the current sample impose that the findings should be interpreted carefully. Future research should focus on understanding what the firm’s characteristics predict the importance and level of effort placed in SMM and the barriers to ROI measurement in SMM programmes, especially in B2B firms.

Practical implications

The current findings confirm that the topic of SMM ROI evaluation is not a priority for B2C or B2B companies. There is a need for an update of their online marketing strategy, namely, on budget definition and allocation. Furthermore, companies should increase the autonomy of SM managers, as they are dependent from marketing managers and hire specialized professionals devoted to SMM in both B2C and B2B companies.

Originality/value

The findings of this study contribute to improve the understanding of the evaluation of SMM and to extend the literature on the subject. It also provides a relevant advance into the assessment and understanding on the measures used to evaluate the effectiveness of SMM programmes by offering a comparison on how B2B and B2C use metrics and allocate resources to the SMM management.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 35 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 December 2019

Keith Pyper, Anne Marie Doherty, Spiros Gounaris and Alan Wilson

Drawing on Resource-based Theory, the purpose of this paper is to empirically examine the effect of International Strategic Brand Management (SBM) on export performance…

1457

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on Resource-based Theory, the purpose of this paper is to empirically examine the effect of International Strategic Brand Management (SBM) on export performance within the Business-to-Business (B2B) context. To be able to purposely assess the relationship, this paper also sets out to discover what antecedent international resources, (financial resources) and international capabilities (market information, branding and marketing planning) contribute to the ability of B2B exporters to effectively manage their brands abroad.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed method firm-level approach was employed. First, a qualitative study of 34 in-depth interviews explored the focal inter-relationships and constructs identified within the literature. A survey of 208 successful UK exporters was then conducted and the results were analysed using structured equation modelling.

Findings

The results confirm that certain marketing capabilities (branding and marketing planning) are advantageous antecedents to the employment of effective SBM in foreign markets which, in turn, leads to increased financial and market performance internationally.

Practical implications

This paper outlines practical brand management considerations managers need to account for to achieve effective exporting. Practitioners are advised to prioritise the development of robust international branding and marketing planning capabilities which can enable them to exploit their limited financial resources for optimal benefits. Furthermore, by developing these capabilities, firms can focus on the essence of their brand and communicate their brand image through the effective strategic management of their brand to business customers, evoking positive brand associations, enhanced perceived brand value and the achievement of increased export performance.

Originality/value

This paper is the first to focus on international SBM as the deterministic factor leading to improved B2B export performance. An innovative framework is offered which positions the pivotal role of International SBM as the central focus. The construct for international branding capabilities is extended specifically for use in the B2B domain.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 37 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 September 2016

Timothy Cawsey and Jennifer Rowley

The purpose of this paper is to provide a unique overview of business-to-business (B2B) companies engagement with and strategic approach to use of social media in brand…

17854

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a unique overview of business-to-business (B2B) companies engagement with and strategic approach to use of social media in brand building. This research complements the much more extensive knowledge base regarding social media use in business-to-consumer (B2C) contexts.

Design/methodology/approach

Since social media marketing is a relatively new activity for B2B companies an interpretivist stance that is inductive in nature is adopted. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with marketing professionals involved in managing social media programmes in France, Ireland, the UK and the USA.

Findings

The study found that the level of enagement with social media marketing varied, as summarised in the B2B Social Media Engagement Taxonomy. Enhancing brand image, extending brand awareness and facilitating customer engagement were the most common social media objectives. There was no evidence to suggest that companies saw social media as heralding a paradigm shift in brand management and control of the kind discussed and experienced in B2C social media contexts. The B2B social media strategy framework is proposed; this identifies the following six components of a social media strategy: monitoring and listening, empowering and enagaging employees, creating compelling content, stimulating electronic word of mouth, evaluating and selecting channels, and enhacning brand presence through integrating social media.

Originality/value

The research contributes to the knowledge base associated with social media marketing by offering insights into and a framework summarising B2B social media strategy.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 34 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 September 2022

Graciela Corral de Zubielqui and Janice Jones

Despite its potential as a new source of competitive advantage, the performance implications of social media (SM) marketing (SMM) are not well understood. This study aims…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite its potential as a new source of competitive advantage, the performance implications of social media (SM) marketing (SMM) are not well understood. This study aims to investigate how and when SMM matters to firm performance, analysing the mediating role of product innovation (PI) and moderating the role of marketing innovation (MI) in business to business (B2B) small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Design/methodology/approach

This paper used structural equation modelling analysis in STATA, using the Australian bureau of statistics data set of 4,956 SMEs which operate in the B2B environment.

Findings

The results reveal differential moderating effects of MI on the direct SMM–performance relationship. MI positively moderates internal SMM and SM use for promotion and branding on firm performance. MI also negatively moderates SM use for customer communication on firm performance, underscoring SMM constituting a double-edged sword. The indirect effects of internal SM use and SM use for promotion and branding, and customer involvement in new product development on performance via PI are significant when MI is absent.

Practical implications

Hence, B2B SMEs benefit from PI and existing SMM but do not benefit from dual PI and new MI.

Originality/value

By disaggregating SMM and explicating the mediating mechanism and moderating effects of MI, this study reveals how and under what conditions SMM matters to firm performance in B2B SMEs.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 29 July 2022

Flevy Lasrado, Park Thaichon and Munyaradzi W. Nyadzayo

In the past few decades, relationship management (RM) theory and RM strategies in business-to-business (B2B) contexts have evolved tremendously, driven by constant…

Abstract

Purpose

In the past few decades, relationship management (RM) theory and RM strategies in business-to-business (B2B) contexts have evolved tremendously, driven by constant innovation. Hence, the purpose of this study is to understand the trends and evolution of RM and relationship quality (RQ) in B2B contexts and empirical insights on RM and RQ in B2B, which in turn would provide insights into trends and future research directions.

Design/methodology/approach

Grounded on the industrial marketing and purchasing group, this study adopts a critical systematic literature review to provide a comprehensive analysis of the past, current and future trends in empirical research insights of RM and RQ in B2B markets.

Findings

This study provides some novel insights into RM in B2B context by using a multidimensional approach to RM and RQ and analyzing prior marketing research from three perspectives: the evolution of RM and RQ in B2B context; prior empirical research; and practical business insights. Overall, these perspectives inform the development of an evolving side of RQ in B2B contexts, leading to some predictions regarding the future of RM in B2B markets.

Practical implications

The exploratory results of this study shed light on the key factors that drive RQ and the importance of RM in B2B markets in the digital age where customers still long for human interaction regardless of the prevalence of advanced technology.

Originality/value

In the wake of advanced technologies and particularly, B2B companies had to turn to virtual platforms and embrace digital transformation to establish and manage their customer relationships. Yet, managing relationships via digital channels has its own challenges for both B2B practitioners and scholars. This indicates that there is still a huge need for attuned RM strategies that align with the changing environments – mainly driven by technological advancement – in B2B markets.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 23 February 2022

Órla Hayes and Felicity Kelliher

This paper aims to provide a systematic review of omni-channel marketing (OCM) literature and explore how it relates to business-to-business (B2B) marketing campaign…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a systematic review of omni-channel marketing (OCM) literature and explore how it relates to business-to-business (B2B) marketing campaign development in the digital era. OCM’s evolution is tracked, exposing the areas in which research is most prevalent while also recognising knowledge gaps. Informed by these literature insights, the changing B2B channel dynamics that present within a digital era customer journey are appraised. An OCM model for B2B marketing campaign development is produced and avenues to further research are presented.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a systematic approach to explore OCM literature. This review informs an OCM model for B2B marketing campaign development to help advance conceptualisation of OCM B2B customer engagement as an emerging phenomena in the digital era.

Findings

With just 21 papers identified, OCM is assumed to fit the criteria of an emerging concept as proposed in previous research studies. The proposed model presents the changing B2B omni-channel dynamics that can be used to create B2B OCM strategies, incorporating the myriad of B2B customer channels and touchpoints currently fabricating the modern B2B marketing terrain.

Research limitations/implications

Conceptual in nature, there is a need for more empirical research to fully comprehend the emerging OCM landscape and how it relates to B2B customer dynamics.

Originality/value

This research provides much-needed conceptualisation of data capture and management strategies for B2B marketing campaign development across the omni-channel in the digital era. While systematic literature reviews exist within the OCM realm, none have charted the current OCM literature.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 37 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 7000