Is 2013 the Year to Add a Direct Consumer Sales Channel?
B-to-C retailers might provide a forecast, current consumption rates and inventory level, but the consumer will provide none of these things. Therefore, a big data solution is one of the few ways to stay ahead of the curve by simulating these metrics. There's also an increased need for capacity in customer service in all areas to provide the aftercare that will cover a broad spectrum of issues.
5. Develop a comprehensive messaging platform. In terms of messaging, it's fairly easy to target and provide a customized experience for B-to-B customers. However, B-to-C targeting is possible when dealing directly with retailers on a micro scale. A macro scale requires the dedication and expertise of marketing agencies, public relations firms and other marketing-related service companies in order to obtain more information and ensure the messaging is consistent for certain audiences.
Undeniably, adding a consumer channel can be a smart move for B-to-B retailers. The benefit is enhanced loyalty to the brand and an ability to deliver a unique product directly to consumers that would have been cost prohibitive if it went the way of B-to-B. The payoff can be big, but it's important to go about it the right way.