Breaching boundaries: B2H is key to a high ROI
Lawrence Chia
Chairman, Pico Group

Pandemic-driven changes in consumer behaviour and ever-changing consumer expectations have blurred the traditional distinctions between B2B and B2C models. In their place is B2H (business-to-human) and a focus on brand-audience communication. According to a McKinsey report in December 2021, more than half the respondents’ companies are now exploring and investing in strategies to enhance this kind of personalised marketing.

Modern marketing strategies focus on creating unique interactive experiences, highlighting the importance of applying innovative technology. For example, cosmetics brand L’Oréal unveiled the ‘YSL Beauté Scent-Sation’ at the annual Viva Technology expo earlier this year. Scent-Sation uses multiple sensors and an EEG (electroencephalography) headset to analyse users’ emotional responses to different scents, and recommends suitable products accordingly. Though a marketing gimmick, the system does usefully streamline the shopping process for the brand and consumers alike.

Compared to B2C and B2B events, the B2H model places heavier emphasis on account-based marketing, hence data collection and analysis are essential to understand and target potential clients. In light of this, Pico developed and launched ExQ™ Experience Analytics, an advanced tool which collects and analyses event experience data from various Pico activation projects. From there, it creates insights on organizing projects in line with audience expectations, and thereby improves their return on experience as well as ROI.

Online channels such as the metaverse have emerged as the go-to option to reach wider audiences with personalised experiences that are unaffected by time or geographical factors. In this way, the metaverse can offer business opportunities that are on par with face-to-face events. For example, CJ Plus, an online digital entertainment expo, was held in the MetaJoy metaverse after its physical counterpart – ChinaJoy, an essential business platform for the gaming industry in mainland China – was postponed due to the pandemic. Under the circumstances, CJ Plus was the ‘better alternative’ to the physical programme, providing a convenient platform for business while reaching out to a wider audience. The organizer even gifted visitors with dedicated NFT token souvenirs to further boost their engagement.

Consumer expectations are the touchstones of all corporations, even as those expectations change. To adapt to the market and deliver effective projects catering to audience expectations, corporations must remain flexible and imaginative.

The full insights article was originally published in Headline Finance on 3 August 2022 (in Chinese only).

Source: Headline Finance (webpage version), 3 August 2022