Some days it feels like B2C and B2B email marketing exist in two different worlds. The first tends to have smaller B2B email lists and longer sales cycles. The other tends towards larger lists and faster sales. As a result, they are sometimes viewed as requiring totally different best practices. Yet there are areas where these two distinct areas of email marketing overlap and even offer new approaches, by borrowing one from the other.

In a recent post at, our own Michael Kelly offered three tips for improving B2B email marketing by learning from B2C counterparts. In a post titled, “B2B Email Marketing: Taking a page from b-to-c,” writer Karen Bannan interviewed Michael and uncovered these three B2C ideas that can work for B2B marketers too:

  1. Add click-to-chat to your email marketing messages. People like instant access to information, whether they are making a personal purchase or a business one. Offer them that option. It’s a common component of B2C email marketing solutions, so why not adopt it for B2B?
  2. Use cookies to re-engage. Emails that follow up an abandoned shopping cart are becoming commonplace in B2C marketing, but there is an opportunity here for B2B marketers too. It likely won’t be an abandoned shopping cart, however, so Michael offers two other approaches: mine those failed internal search terms to reach out via email to direct them to the page they wanted but couldn’t find, and “use simple browsing data” to populate email content with information related to what they were searching for. Both of these options will result in very targeted and relevant email messages.
  3. Create a newsletter just for loyal customers. Michael suggests setting parameters for determining who is a loyal customer, then sending them a newsletter with exclusive information, such as advance notice of new offers or upgrades.

All three of these email practices are fairly easy to pull off, and chances are your B2B competition isn’t using them. So consider putting one or more of these techniques to work for your business!

Published On: March 25th, 2013Categories: Email marketing best practices

About the Author: Sharon

Sharon Ernst from is on a mission to improve the business and marketing writing skills of today’s workforce with her blog, newsletter and online classes. Her newest class on intermediate email copywriting covers 19 tips and techniques non-copywriters can put to use right away for better results. The class has real-life examples and before/after comparisons to make the lessons stick. Find her class at When she’s not busy helping employees, managers and marketers master their writing skills, she and her husband are busy raising pigs, cows, chickens and vegetables on their 20-acre farm.

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