Business-to-Business Marketing : How to Understand and Succeed in Business Marketing in an Emerging Africa book cover
1st Edition

Business-to-Business Marketing
How to Understand and Succeed in Business Marketing in an Emerging Africa

ISBN 9780367201470
Published May 18, 2021 by Productivity Press
318 Pages 33 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Business-to-Business Marketing: An African Perspective: How to Understand and Succeed in Business Marketing in an Emerging Africa is a comprehensive application of the most current research results, concepts and frameworks to the African business-to-business (B-to-B) context. The chapters are designed to provide the reader with a thorough analysis of b-to-b. Important aspects like competitive strategy in B-to-B, marketing mix strategies, relationship management and collaboration, business services, big data analysis, and emerging issues in B-to-B are discussed with African examples and cases. As a result, the book is easy to read and pedagogical. It is suitable for courses at universities and other tertiary levels, undergraduate and graduate courses, MBA and professional B-to-B marketing programmes. Working managers will find it a useful reference for practical insights and as a useful resource to develop and implement successful strategies.

The Authors

Collectively the four authors have over 60 years of teaching and research in B-to-B marketing and management in and outside Africa. They have the managerial and consulting experience that has enabled them to combine theory with practice. Their experience and knowledge provide the needed background to uniquely integrate teaching and research with the realities of the African B-to-B market. Their command of and insight into the subject are unparalleled.





Table of Contents


Introduction and Learning Objectives

What is Marketing?

How is marketing done?



Part 1: Characteristics of the business-to-business market

Chapter 1: The business-to-business market

1.1. What is business-to-business marketing?

1.1.1. What are the key components of business-to-business marketing?

1.1.2. Marketing mix factors in business-to-business marketing *

1.1.3. The marketing philosophies/concepts in the business-to-business marketing context

1.2. Parties in the business-to-business market

1.3. Functions or Types of business-to-business Producers

1.4. Similarities and differences between business marketing and consumer marketing

1.5 Conclusion

References *

1.7. Case Study: Crispy Kreme of South Africa: A b-to-b or b-to-c company?

1.8. Insights into some African business markets: Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, and Ghana.

1.8.1. Kenya’s b-to-b market - Examining the tourism sector


1.8.2. The Motor Industry Development Programme in South Africa.


1.8.3. Evolution of the Tanzanian innovation ecosystem



1.8.4. Business Relationships in an Enterprise Cluster of Informal Artisans in Ghana


Chapter 2: Strategy in the business-to-business market

2.1. Strategy for the business-to-business market

2.2. Formulating Strategy in B-to-B

2.3. Strategy in Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises; and Entrepreneurial Companies

2.4. Contents of Business-to-business Strategy

2.5. Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning (STP) in B-to-B

2.6. Modes of Collaboration and Competition in Business-to-Business Markets

2.7. Conclusion


2.8. Case and Exercise: Unitrans – getting your food to the dining table

Part 2: Marketing and Purchasing in the Business-to-business Market


Murphy, D. (2007, April 6). B-TO-B vs B2C Marketing – Similar but Different. Retrieved from


4.1. B-TO-B Buyers

4.2. Participants in the B-TO-B buying decision-making

4.3. B-TO-B buying situations

4.4. Modes of B-TO-B Buying

4.5. B-TO-B buying decision-making process

4.6. Determinants of B-TO-B buying behaviour

4.7. B-TO-B Buying Techniques

4.8. B-TO-B selling strategies

Customer‐oriented selling strategy

4.9. Conclusion




5.1. Nature of business-to-business (B-TO-B) selling

5.2. B-TO-B Sellers

5.3. Principles of B-TO-B selling

5.4. B-TO-B selling process

5.5. B-TO-B Selling Techniques

5.6. Conclusion


Part 3: Competitive Aspects of the Business-to-business Market


6.1. B-TO-B Service concept

6.2. B-TO-B service industry

6.3. Characteristics of B-TO-B services

6.4. B-TO-B service quality models

6.5. The relevance of B-TO-B service quality improvement

6.6. Case Study: Delighting the b-to-b service recipient - the value of the basics.


7.1. Why source and outsource?

7.2. The Scope of Sourcing

7.3. The future of global outsourcing

7.4. Why do businesses outsource?

7.5. Why has Africa not succeeded in becoming an outsourcing hub?

7.5. Conclusion

7.6. Case Study

Chapter 8: Systems and Project Business

8.1. What are Systems and Project Business?

8.1.1. Systems Business

8.1.2. Project Business

8.2. The nature and role of relationships and networks in systems and project business

8.3. B-to-B Opportunities for Suppliers, sub-Contractors, Consultants, and Financiers

8.4. The Project Business Process

8.5. The relationship between project management and project business

8.6. Risks and project business strategy

8.7. Success factors for systems and project business in Africa

8.8 Conclusion

8.9. Case and Exercise

References (Main Text)

References (Case)

Chapter 9: Managing Business with Governments, Institutions, and Non-business actors

9.1. What are Institutions?

9.1.1. Roles of Institutions in the African business-to-business market

9.1.2. Non-profit / idealistic / administrative / social objectives

9.1.3. How should b-to-b companies manage the idealistic/administrative/social objectives of Institutions?

9.1.4. Marketing and management interactions and relationships with institutions

9.1.5. How should b-to-b companies manage marketing and management interactions and relationships with institutions?

9.2. International Institutions and non-Business Actors in African Business-to-business Markets

9.3. Non-governmental organisations (NGOs)

9.3.1. Non-profit / Idealistic objectives

9.3.2. How should b-to-b companies manage the idealistic component of non-governmental organisations?

9.3.3. Marketing and management interactions and activities of non-governmental organisations

9.3.4. How should b-to-b companies manage the marketing and management interactions and relationships with non-governmental organisations?

9.4. Conclusion

9.5. Case and Exercise: How to improve public purchasing and save money for the government? The case of Ghana’s National Procurement Policy.


References (Chapter)

References (Case)

Part 4: Strategic Alliances and Collaborative Relationships Management in the

10.2 Partner Selection for Joint Ventures and Partial Acquisitions

10.3 Key Success factors for Joint Ventures and Partial Acquisition

Chapter 11: Buyer-Seller Relationship in Business-to-business (B-to-B) Marketing in the

11.1. Introduction

11.2. Understanding the Business to Business Market

11.3 Types and Importance of Alliances in the Business-to-Business (B-to-B) Market

11.4 Importance of b-to-b relationships

11.5. The Role of Decision Makers in B-to-B Context.

11.6. How to develop different types of a valuable business relationship

11.7. Initiating and Influencing Buyer-Seller Relationship in Business-to-Business Markets

11.8. Performance of Non-Equity Alliance in Africa

11.9. Communication methods in business relationships

11.11 Conclusion

Case and Exercise

12.1. Introduction

12.2. Brand Positioning Strategies

12.3. Harnessing social media and internet platforms for brand and customer loyalty

12.5. Customer Relationship Management (CRM): A tool for building customer loyalty

Part 5: Capacity Development in the African Business-to-business Context

Chapter 13: Developing Sales and Marketing Capability in African B-TO-B Context

13.1. Developing a Sales Organisation and a Sales Process

13.2. Developing a Strategic Sales Organization

13.3. Developing a Sales Organisation and a Sales Process

13.4. KAM Business Case

13.2. Developing a Sales Process

13.3. Engaging the Key Account Personnel


Part 6: Emerging Issues in Business-to-business Marketing

Chapter 14: Emerging Issues in Business-to-Business Marketing

14.1. The impact of globalisation on B-TO-B and how companies are responding

14.2. Transitioning to Servitization and Servitization strategies in business-to-business

14.3. How Digitalization and Artificial Intelligence are transforming business-to-business marketing


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Dr. Richard Afriyie Owusu is an Associate Professor of Marketing and International Business at the School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, Sweden. He is also the Research Leader of the Global Mind Knowledge Platform and a member of the Academic Council at Linnaeus University. During his academic career of over fifteen years, Professor Owusu has taught and researched, among others, business-to-business marketing; international business; business development, management and entrepreneurship in Africa, in universities in Europe, Africa, Australia, and U.S.A.

He has published over thirty scientific articles and book chapters spanning international market entry strategies; acquisitions and joint ventures; international project business; business networks; and business in Africa. He has participated in several corporate projects such as Globalization of Finnish SMEs (GlobFinn); Brands, Innovation and Globalization of Finnish Companies (BIG). He contributed to the Ghana Export Strategy (2010-2015) while consulting for Omega Strategic Resources Limited. Currently, Professor Owusu is also a partner of Foresight Consulting, a consulting partnership dedicated to promoting successful business in Africa.

Professor Robert E. Hinson is a marketing communications practitioner, turned scholar. He holds a DPhil in Marketing from the University of Ghana and a PhD in International Business from the Aalborg University Business School. In his marketing communications career (1998-2003), he managed advertising budgets for brands like Acer, Canon, LG, Microsoft, Mercedes Benz and, Peugeot. In 2004, Robert also worked as the Marketing Communications Advisor to Cal Bank IPO, a bank that eventually got listed on the Ghana Stock Exchange. There was an oversubscription of shares by over 250%, making it one of the most successful IPOs in Ghana to date. Since turning scholar in 2003, Robert has served as Rector of the Perez University College, Acting Director of Institutional Advancement at the University of Ghana, and twice as Head of the Department of Marketing of Entrepreneurship at the University of Ghana Business School. Professor Hinson is also an Extraordinary Professor at the North West Business School in South Africa. Robert is one of the leading marketing scholars in Africa and has served on notable local and international boards. In 2019, Prof Hinson was listed as one of the top 100 speakers in Ghana by the Speakers Bureau Africa (

Dr. Ogechi Adeola is an Associate Professor of Marketing and Head of Department of Operations, Marketing and Information Systems at the Lagos Business School (LBS), Pan-Atlantic University, Nigeria. She commenced her career with Citibank Nigeria, spending about 14years in the Nigerian financial sector, before moving to academia. Professor Adeola holds a doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) from Alliance Manchester Business School, UK. She is a 2016 Visiting International Fellow, Open University Business School, UK; a 2017 Paul R. Lawrence Fellow, Chicago; guest lecturer at the University of Ghana Business School; Visiting Professor at the University of Professional Studies Accra (UPSA); and Associate Dean, University of the People, USA.

Dr Adeola has published academic books and papers in top scholarly journals with her co-authored articles winning Best Paper Awards at international conferences in 2016–2019, consecutively. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Strategic Management, Nigeria and the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria.

Dr. Nnamdi Oguji is an experienced professional with over eight years’ experience working for KONE as Business development expert and managing global supply chain projects for KONE Corporation Finland. In parallel, Nnamdi completed his PhD in Economics and Business Administration in 2015 from the University of Vaasa and continues his research in international business and supply chain and thematic areas within this field that integrate digitalization and big data.

Over his eight years in KONE corporation, Nnamdi has helped KONE setup big data-based technologies in Finland and India and have leverage big data analytics for customer insights, offering development, pricing and competitive intelligence, supply chain excellence and driving sales and profitability. During this same, Nnamdi has taught in several universities in Finland as a guest lecturer on the application of big data in international business and supply chains. Nnamdi also has publications in several ABS ranked journals and his 2019 publication in the Baltic Journal of Management won the 2020 emerald literati award for Highly Commended papers.


"This book is a must-read for scholars and practitioners interested in gaining insightful state-of-the-art knowledge about the working dynamics of the b-to-b marketing environment in Africa. The continent of Africa is predominantly constructed as a consuming region, thus promoting an overly skewed consumer-centric marketing (b-to-c). Ironically, the enormous marketing opportunities for b-to-b marketing in Africa are buried beneath the dormant potentials of ‘Rising Africa’ market, which await empirical, context-specific and case-by-case exposé. Four African scholars and scholars in Africa’s b-to-b marketing used this book to break the iceberg! They masterfully domesticated extant b-to-b marketing theories within the African context and render b-to-b marketing discourse in authentic narratives, which significantly different it from what authors from other climes present. Indeed, the book serves as Africa's b-to-b marketing gold standard! I unreservedly recommend the book as reference material for b-to-b marketing in Africa both to scholars and managers."

Prof Anayo D. Nkamnebe PhD, Professor of Marketing, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Nigeria. President, The Academy of Management Nigeria (TAMN)

"I strongly recommend the book for b-to-b courses in the continent and about the continent and for consultants and managers in the b-to-b field. While it is based on an academic format, it is easy to read and understand. It is a book that managers can refer to for insight when formulating strategies and developing action plans. Consultants will find it a useful reference when preparing reports and lectures. Likewise, leaders of government institutions and non-governmental organisations should find the book very insightful for seeing their organisations through a marketing lens."

Dr Kofi Q. Dadzie (Associate Professor), J.Mack Robinson College of Business, Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA. Immediate Past President, Academy of African Business and Development (AABD); Area Editor of Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing.


"I define a good nonfiction read, but it’s ability to coherently and expertly illustrate a particular concept with scrupulous attention to detail. Few books have satisfied this definition but this book is certainly on top! An underrated masterpiece, it is a must-read for those eagerly willing to delve further into the dynamics of the B-to-B marketing environment in Africa. Since it’s a concept constantly overshadowed by consumer-centric marketing (B-to-C), this book is a breath of fresh air for those willing to grasp the rising opportunities within the continents market. It masterfully elucidates each word exploring numerous theories and discourses, while providing lucid explanations for each sub-concept it dabbles in. I consider it a rare bout of luck that I stumbled upon such a treasure that could expertly unravel the secrets and hidden policies embedded deep within Africa’s B-B to marketing environment. Therefore, I deem it an excellent source of information and a perfect tutor for those yearning for a unique read that could possibly satisfy any question regarding the concept."

Dr. Samanjith Udumalagala, Apex Chief Operating Officer, Jospong Group of Companies