Sense and nonsense of B2B, B2C and social media.


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After reading new set of posts on B2B and B2C and social media with nice high level statements that fall into two categories: 1) the same approach with social media for both; 2) no, they are not the same, I decided to look at the same subject but from a different point of view.

First I decided to categorize supplier-customer relationships. I think the categorization below fits both type of companies B2B and B2C:

Supplier<->Customer Relationship Models

Supplier<->Customer Relationship Models

After creating this pictorial relationship representation, I decided to ask you these questions:

Maybe instead of debating on whether social media works or does not work for B2B vs B2C types of companies we need to discuss the use of social media for companies [both B2B and B2C] per category view mentioned above?

And maybe it makes sense to add a process dimension to this discussion: sales, marketing, customer service/support?

Do you think there will be major industry-specific differences?

Here is the simple methodology you can use to complete this exercise:

-         Take your company as an example; tell us which category mentioned above it fits in;

-         Tell us whether it makes sense for your company to use social media channels. Which ones? For what business processes?

Look forward to reading and discussing the results of your case studies!


  1. Hi,
    I work for an IT offshoring organization in India. From the pictorial description above, i would imagine that as a supplier of IT services to many customers across the world, our model would most likely fall in a One -> Many, supplier-customer relationship.

    What do you think?


  2. Hi Amit,

    I would think that your company most likely fits into many to many bucket. Why? There are thousands of IT offshore providers [many] and there are many consumers of outsourcing IT services [many].

    This indicates highly competitive marketplace.

    Best regards,


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