B2B marketers are less likely than their B2C counterparts to believe their business will be compromised by the mass switch to remote working amid the coronavirus crisis.

B2B marketers appear less phased by the switch to remote working during the global coronavirus pandemic than their B2C counterparts.

Of the 872 B2B respondents to a survey by Marketing Week and Econsultancy, more than half (51%) say their organisation is very proficient at enabling remote working. That compares to just 34% of the 617 B2C marketers who responded who think their business is proficient.

Elsewhere, just 9% of B2B marketers feel their organisation is not proficient at enabling remote working, compared to 16% working in B2C.

While 35% of B2B marketers say that remote working was somewhat rare or rare prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, the number is far higher among B2C marketers at 50%.

This readiness for remote working may well be a key reason why 42% of B2B marketers say their business will not be compromised by remote working, compared to just 27% of B2C marketers. Only 11% of B2B marketers believe their organisation will definitely be compromised by remote working, versus 21% of their B2C counterparts.

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In fact, more than half of B2B marketers (55%) say they already have a definition of remote working that is adaptable to emerging needs, versus 46% of B2C marketers, while 52% say they have clear remote working policies, compared to 42% of their B2C counterparts.

Some 53% of those working in B2B say their tech teams are set up to support remote workers, versus 43% of consumer facing marketers.

B2B marketers also appear less concerned that remote working will impact on creative collaboration. While 76% of those working in B2C say that creative collaboration suffers when workers don’t share the same space, just 66% of those in B2B agree.

Whereas 43% of B2C marketers believe accessing data and databases will be a challenge while working remotely during the pandemic, that opinion is only shared by 29% of B2B marketers.

Likewise, while 37% of B2C marketers feel vendor and contractor will be somewhat or very challenging during this period of remote working, just 28% of B2B marketers agree.

Delays and demand

The impact of the coronavirus crisis on demand for services appears to be having less of an effect on the B2B community.

Whereas 36% of B2B marketers have experienced lowered demand for their services, on the B2C side 43% of marketers have felt a drop in demand.

While 58% of B2C marketers have paused new any new hires, this is less of a concern among B2B marketers (49%). Likewise, B2C marketers are more likely to have seen planned technology or infrastructure spending delayed (51%) compared to their B2B counterparts (46%).

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However, when it comes to the delay of campaigns and product launches as the pandemic escalates, the response appears to be the same across the board.

More than half (60%) of B2B marketers say they have paused marketing campaigns, as do 57% of B2C marketers. While 64% of B2B marketers are reviewing budget commitments, so are 63% of their B2C counterparts.

Furthermore, 53% of B2B and 54% of B2C marketers have put new product launches under review since the onset of the coronavirus outbreak.

To help with the transition to remote working, Econsultancy is running a free webinar on how to effectively work remotely on 26 March.
To register for the event, click here.

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