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WHAT ORGANIZATIONS COMPRISE THE B2B MARKET AND WHAT ARE THE ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THEIR BUYING BEHAVIOUR?

The business-to-business market comprises four primary buying groups: business and industry, governments, institutions, and the professions, all of which require a vast array of products and services. The business market has fewer buyers than consumer markets; the buyers tend to be concentrated near each other; and the market presents different types of demand. The buying criteria are practical and include factors such as price, quality, service and services offered, and consistency of supply.

HOW DOES THE BUYING DECISION PROCESS WORK IN B2B MARKETING?

The decision-making process in organizations is quite formal in nature. The dollar value of the transaction often dictates what procedure to use. The more expensive the decision, the more formal the process will be. It is common for an organization to use a buying committee that is a formal group within the organization. They may also use a buying committee that is an informal group in an organization

Personal or lifestyle influences must now be considered in the business-tobusiness seller–buyer relationship. Including lifestyles in the marketing equation is based on the notion that new, younger managers with different attitudes are taking over management positions from older, more traditionally oriented managers. Within an organization all buying decisions may be centralized. In the age of technology it is also common for organizations to form partnerships with suppliers (marketers) in order to ensure consistency of supply and cost certainty. E-procurement models are used in such partnerships.

WHAT IS THE SPECIFIC BUYING PROCEDURE MARKETERS MUST ADAPT TO IN B2B MARKETING?

Organizations frequently use a predetermined procedure for soliciting suppliers. A typical buying procedure would include the following steps: problem recognition, need description, product description, supplier search, proposal solicitation, supplier selection, routine order specification, and performance review.

Marketing organizations have to be flexible when approaching business customers. Different customers in different markets have different needs. Marketers must adapt their marketing strategy to meet unique needs and unique buying situations. Tailored marketing strategies tend to be more successful in business-to-business marketing.