In this paper, the differences between the B2B and B2C markets for the narrow market of integrative medicine are examined and analyzed. The existing conditions on the market of integrative medicine in France are considered and described. Analyzed thematic literature in the field of marketing and integrative medicine. The reasons for choosing a qualitative type of data analysis, its advantages and convenience are considered. The work was performed with an operation on an existing integrative medicine company in France, IFPPC. The firm was considered as a whole, its methods of work with advantages and disadvantages. On the basis of interviews taken, for the most part, an answer to the research question was formed and proposals were put forward for optimizing the company's work in the future.

Аннотация статьи
qualitative research method
integrative medicine
market analysis
market B2B
market B2C
Ключевые слова

Integrative medicine occupies an entire large and large niche in the medical market, but is faced with such a banal problem of attracting both clients and professional doctors. Therefore, we decided to analyze what methods clinics use today in order to find out how the difference between customer service and professional service affects marketing communication. Using the example of a French company for the provision of these medical services, we will conduct a series of theta, the results of which may effectively influence their existing marketing strategy to attract new clients and doctors. Integrative medicine is a completely new (or, as some say, very old) market for medicine. Most people need education on how to approach integrative medicine services and what to expect from them.

Marketing to the business consumer (B2C) market is more emotional; while the business sector requires more professionalism. Therefore, in striving to successfully plan and implement marketing communication strategies for different types of customers, it is important to understand the differences between the communication processes between business and consumers and between business and business. Despite the fact that the main goal of a medical company in the B2C market is to provide services, it must be said that increasing the number of services provided is not always the goal of marketing communications. In order to attract end consumers to the B2C market, the emotional factor is very important in the entire sales process in order to provoke a decision to buy a service. The B2C marketplace can be characterized as based on the emotions of customers to be touched.

In the B2B sector, companies pay more attention to the professional aspects of the service and its features. He shows that marketing communications strategies in the B2B and B2C sectors must be based on different assumptions. The object of the research is the differences in the process of marketing communications in the business-to-consumer and business-to-business markets; and the aim is to identify the differences in marketing communication processes in the business-to-consumer and business-to-business markets.

In this market of medicine, there is the importance of three components that determine the effectiveness of the marketing communications process, namely: the organizational structure of the marketing communications department, available financial resources and elements of the marketing communications mix [1].

Market size is also an important factor in developing a communication strategy in the B2B sector. As discussed, B2C sales potential is usually limited by population or geographic region or a combination of both, but in the case of a B2B sales strategy, market size may be limited by the number of specialized clinics or hospitals in the area. Another important aspect that influences the differences in marketing communications in the B2C and B2B sectors is the decision maker. From the point of view of the consumer, in B2C there is always a specific person who makes the decision to buy a product. For B2B sales, in most cases more than one person will make the decision; therefore, knowledge of decision makers and the B2B decision making process is very important. The differences between the B2C and B2B markets are clear; therefore, companies must plan and implement their marketing communications with these differences in mind in order to achieve optimal results.

Communication goals In the case of B2C marketing, the main goal of the company is the sale, that is, the buyer's decision to spend money on services (meditation, addiction treatment, etc.), however, this market is unique in that this sale of a service can be one-time, since a person has been cured thanks to this service from his illness. In addition, increasing sales is not always the goal of marketing communications. There can be many others in the company's strategy - secondary goals, such as increasing loyalty, strengthening the brand, studying the customer's reaction, and others. Companies must plan and implement their marketing communications based on the differences in these markets in order to achieve optimal results. Moreover, different advertising tools can be used for different purposes, for example, raising consumer awareness of the services; inform people about the features and benefits of the company's offers; or to provoke consumers to buy these offers [2].

Emotion is very important when deciding whether to purchase a B2C service, and companies spend significant resources to recognize the right emotions to close a deal. On the other hand, in the B2B sector, there are planned activities included in the sales process: the buyer must adhere to budgetary and time limits. In B2B sales, personal emotions are not associated with the decision to purchase a service, it is more of a professional interest or even a necessity.

Analyzing every interview we came with the conclusion that the communication in Integrative Medicine are mostly made by word of mouth. This communication works and will continue to work as the referential marketing considered as beneficial and one the most efficient strategy in the marketing in general.

Concerning market of Integrative Medicine we can come up with the conclusion that not every members of our research had the same vision of the market which is normal regarding the fact that all of them work in separate sectors of the market and have different challenges. We can see that for some competition is low for others it is high, to establish the precise answer on that matter we needed to do deeper research into market and we can say that there is only one direct competitor and there is new small indirect competitors that arrives. So we can say the competition in growth.

If we talk about the B2B market, then the company directs its activity to training professional doctors who are interested in new types of medicine. Various conferences, training seminars are created, where different doctors share their experience with other doctors. The methods of attraction are pretty simple - word of mouth, articles in newspapers, promotion on social media, and very little advertising. Also, such promotion methods take a very long time until they reach a potential consumer, so the company is trying to find new ways in its promotion. However, even with such work, clients on the B2B market are loyal, since the company offers different programs - after completing one program, clients can and want to go to another program in integrative medicine. In order to acquire and maintain customer loyalty, first of all, a company needs to provide quality services with relevant and useful information for them. In addition, this is a market of professionals, where everyone is colleagues, therefore, holding open events, informal meetings where as many new people as possible can gather to learn about this type of medical services. After such events, word of mouth can function stronger, because it is the most important, at the moment, tool for attracting old and new customers.

If we are talking about the B2C market, then the most common answer was that this is the market for individual clients. These clients are patients with unique personal problems that they want to eliminate. Such patients also learn about integrative medicine and this company specifically through word of mouth, including on the recommendation of their doctor. Such clients are rare, so getting them is much more difficult, primarily because they often simply do not know about the existence of this type of medicine, because they have never come across it. In this case, the wyrm uses almost the same methods as in the B2B market: word of mouth, social networks with different articles, posting on DoctorLib, sending emails (takes a very long time), and also (since it is very popular in French culture) publications in newspapers.

To conclude with, the difference of B2B and B2C marketing strategies applied in Integrative medicine is significant. B2B and B2C marketing campaigns are different, they share the same technical best practices, like using retargeting to reduce abandoned carts or negative keywords to improve ad placements. While these practices stay the same, however, there are several crucial differences that separate the two. B2B is doctors, nurses and Health Professionals which requires more professional communication, B2C is patients which requires more emotional and solution-oriented communication. Nevertheless, the channels of communication are the same. What we can presume from the interviews is that the best way to communicate in Integrative Medicine is word of mouth for both sectors, the only thing that differs is the content of communication [3].

In B2B marketing, you need to appeal to a specific individual or small group of individuals within the business. B2C campaigns can reach any potential customer who would be interested in their product, even if that person theoretically wouldn’t be the buyer.

B2B customers are often going to take a significantly longer time then conducting more research before purchasing. B2C can make decision fast and it often can be based on emotions and personal individual problems.

Текст статьи
  1. Integrative medicine : Business risks and opportunities, freely available online
  2. Katona, Z, Sarvary, M. Maersk Line: B2B social media – “it is communication, not marketing”, freely available online
  3. Ndubisi, N.O., Nataraajan, R. Marketing Relationships in the New Millennium B2B Sector, freely available online
  4. Réklaitis, K., Pileliené, L. Principle Differences between B2B and B2C Marketing Communication Processes, freely available online.
  5. Yong, S.S., Seung, K.Y., Sang Y.S., Sung E.K. The mediating role of commitment in healthcare B2B marketing, freely available online.
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