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C2B: How Social Media Is Flipping Who Has Control

I have started hearing the term "C2B' around lately. C2B is the opposite of B2C, where the consumer is driving the business. If companies do no take the time to understand the sentiment and insights embedded in THE CROWD they can be affected by it.


By Malcolm De Leo

I have always made it a point to admit when someone comes up with a term or idea that is just simply great and/or poignant.  In this case, the concept of C2B, a term I have started hearing lately is just that…elegant.

What is C2B?  This is the opposite of B2C where the consumer is driving the business and not the other way around.  In some of my posts, I have made it a point to focus on what I call “the social media speed of insight”;  this is essentially the hypothesis (and looks like reality) that if companies do no take the time to understand the sentiment and insights embedded in THE CROWD they can be affected by it.

When they are affected, it is the when the consumer (C) is driving the (B).  I have talked about it.  I have thought about it.  I have never put a term to it.  Bravo!  And as a scientist, it is ALWAYS the case that when an issue in science becomes big enough it gets it own unique term.  Well social media is on the way to having its own version…C2B.

The question remains…who will be the biggest players in C2B?  What parts of the market need the infrastructure, service or products to make it live?

I have written about THE CROWD and MY CROWD;  these are two beasts that need taming in order for C2B to thrive. The elements enterprises must understand to control the C2B process are customer demographics, influence, sentiment, interaction between consumers and companies and many other things that need to be built for C2B to provide real tangible  value to the “B” part of the equation; the “C” is already getting value!

As C2B grows the question what is going to happen to B2C?

How will the flow of information affect how B2C runs and for that matter B2B?

These are things to ponder for sure!

Hopefully, as part of C2B you can help me think about it….

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3 responses to “C2B: How Social Media Is Flipping Who Has Control

  1. Interesting article.

    I’m a recruiter specialising in market research and I think I might have another eligant concept for you.

    The recruitment industry has always referred to those not actively seeking a new job as “passive candidates” but this, I feel, doesn’t do these individuals justice. Passive has negaitive connotations and since they aren’t actively looking they aren’t really candidates.

    I therefore prefer the term Selective Talent.

    1. Nice term Simon. So are you thinking that social media and the C2B concept is a new model for talent identification?

  2. Malcom, have read your thread with great interest. Also, noticed that most threads on C2B have become non-existent since about 2011? But I have a thought with regards too the value of C2B local marketing! The Local Consumer is either in a 911 or 411 thought process and with that said in this day of the WWW they will gravitate to the WWW for satisfaction! So, why has the B2B relationship failed to capitalize on this platform? It would seems that the National Manufacturer/Distributor of product to the Local Merchant would be in a partnering mode to assist in the C2B? When in fact what really happens is the manufacturer/supplier delivers a product and has no partnering plan either to assure and insure frequency of the “Re-Order”?

    joe underwood
    Titan Fence, Inc.

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