In this panel, Lee-Ann was leading a panel detailing exactly how you can navigate the partnership economy to build B2B and brand-to-brand relationships that drive incremental sales for your business in the performance channel. Lee-Ann was joined by Tyler Calder, CMO of PartnerStack, Lisa Riolo, Co-Founder and Advisor of impact.com, Daniel Lancioni, Senior Director of Partnerships at Reveal, and Chris Thomas, VP of Strategic Growth at The Partner Agency.
The panel was talking about how to find the right partnerships, how to set these up for success and what metrics and preparation points need to be met to measure both parties results. Listen in to get a full understanding of where and how to begin brand partnerships successfully in your program offering.
Business to Business vs Brand to Brand
There was a lot of talk about B2B versus B2C in this panel, but even more surprisingly, there was even a lot of talk about when it comes to B2B versus B2B!
Lisa said: “The use of the abbreviation B2B, I think there’s a lot of confusion there because there is the B2B business model. … There’s a lot of other people who might refer to B2B as brand to brand, meaning that there’s often two types of companies that are competing.”
Conversely, Chris said: “I think they’re both important, this year specifically, more than ever and I think the two of them can work in harmony. Especially this year too because when you’re talking about business to business, you’re talking about a landscape that didn’t exist all that long ago.”
B2B vs B2C
But what this distinction shows is that there appears to be a shift away from B2B altogether noted by a lot of the panel.
Tyler said: “You’re starting to see some interesting things with folk like Canva, which starts to blur the lines between B2B and B2C and if you just log into their platform you can see all the integrations that they’ve built their partnerships with.”
Lisa then asked about a shift she has noticed between B2C affiliates and publishers who are then migrating over, asking: “Do you feel like that shift is partly the result of organisations like you just described, like Canva, where they’re starting to engage more with an audience that is functioning more like a consumer or do you think that the companies that were affiliates are starting to do a little bit more of developing content, etc.?”
Tyler’s response was: “Affiliates that have historically focussed on B2C, that’s what they’ve built their business on, they’re starting to realize that there is huge opportunity in B2B and they’re starting to shift in that direction and they’re starting to build content for the B2B community.”
Daniel helpfully added: “There is a depth thing at play as well in B2b versus B2C. B2C is a really large scale, you know the affiliate programs that have run in the past, you’re talking millions and millions of revenue across hundreds of thousands of consumers that are driving that, whereas in an inner B2B you’re talking larger ticket items with a much smaller subset.”
B2B influencers are an underused concept and yet one that has a lot of potential, as Chris explained.
Chris said: “The big thing that I like about influencers is that I personally use and listen to influencers all the time. So where I’m going with this is that consumer behaviour is very different I think now. So guys that are making business-to-business decisions are not necessarily sitting there with a checklist like they used to 10, or 15 years ago. They’re like me. I needed to purchase expensive software, I went on YouTube and I watched how to use it and I watch people speaking about it and it’s social proof what I was trying to do and it made me feel very comfortable with it. … Everyone I talk to on the phone anymore wants to know about B2B influencers.”
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