You may have heard that 80s pop icon Kate Bush has just announced her first live concerts in 35 years; but if you haven’t bought your tickets I’m afraid you’re too late (well, almost – see footnote) According to reports, the tickets for the 22 concerts – all 77000 of them – sold within 15 minutes of being offered for sale online at the end of March. Well, not quite true. In fact many of the tickets had already been allocated even before they went on public sale – to the Kate Bush community. Tickets were offered to people who had registered on Kate’s website a full 2 days before the public sale. This meant that the real fans who followed their idol and visited her website were given the advantage of advanced notice. These people are Kate’s ‘community’ who have a particular fit/connection with her music and performance so it’s a win:win. The true fans get the best chance to see the performance and Kate Bush maximises her chance of selling the tickets by offering them to the people most likely to buy them.
Relevance to Business to Business?
But isn’t all this retail/consumer you may ask? What’s this got to do with B2B? Well, in my view, a key difference between Business to Consumer and Business to Business is the ability to identify and differentiate you market. It is much easier for a manufacturer of (say) speciality engineering components to identify whether a given company/contact is likely to have a fit/need with their products (i.e be part of their ‘community’) than it is for Kate to know whether a given person is likely to want to buy a concert ticket. However, as soon as Kate focuses on her ‘community’ of fans, this changes. She is now selling to a qualified, niche market – in the same way that many B2B businesses sell to niche markets.
The Power of Community
The power of community works for every business. If you can identify people/companies who have a particular fit/need for your products or services and build relationships with these contacts through regular, constructive communication, you can build a community of mutual respect and understanding that can be a great platform for doing business when the time is right. Build you community and engage with them. It worked for Kate Bush and it can work for you. If you need some help or just want to chat, do get in touch. Footnote: If you really want a ticket to Kate’s concerts, they are available – at a price. Within 1 hour of the tickets going on sale, they were listed on the resale websites where a ticket with a £135 face value was on offer for £1400! The glory of capitalism!