Let me admit it straight from the bat: I have an overwhelming fondness for business models that addresses the users wallet directly.
Not in terms of forcing them to splash the cash but in terms of delivering products, services and experiences that solve meaningful problems and challenges to people, which they are both willing an able to pay for.
Having said that I of course also realize that there are product and services, it makes little or no sense to sell to others than enterprises or even public customers.
But there is another consideration I think is important to make, when you’re thinking about how to get your product or service to market:
Is your product or service one that grows bottom-up or one that will only get a decent chance, if it’s implemented top down?
Normally, we would probably think that products coming from below would have the greatest chance of being successful. I think this is true to the extend that the user experience is superior, and the product is solving a problem that is well recognized by all by at the very least being more efficient at it.
But what if the product or service requires a ‘leap of faith’ in order to be given a chance and get an opportunity to prove its real worth in delivering value to users?
Here, perhaps, it would often be better to go the entreprise route; find the internal champion of whatever problem or challenge your innovation is looking to address, making him/her see the light and how they could benefit from your product or service, and then let them buy it and roll out across the org.
The more new – and not in a consumer-friendly ‘shiny thing’ – kind of way a product is, the more I think you should bet on this enterprise approach. People can be unforgiving after one or two tries, and the corporate culture of moving slow but getting there in time might end up serving you well.
I guess, my overall point is this:
Look at your product or service and get crystal clear on the level of buy-in, it needs in order to be successful in a B2B context. The more buy-in it needs, the more patience you will need, and the more you should probably go the classic enterprise sales route.