Raconteur Meets

Building a B2B business within a global B2C brand

Raconteur Meets is a new interview series designed to give a voice to marketers working within B2B. In the first interview of the series, we speak to Deliveroo for Business’ Alizée Varloud about the challenges that come with differentiating from a B2C parent brand and how automation is driving their growth.

Q. Can you tell me how Deliveroo for Business is different from the Deliveroo that we all know?

A. Just like Deliveroo, at Deliveroo for Business (“DFB”) we offer food delivery services but for a variety of different use cases – from staff lunches to more complex solutions like the catering of large events. Even though we are both offering food delivery, Deliveroo for Business is an extension of Deliveroo with more of a service element. Customers already know us and love us for our brand, our amazing selection of restaurants, and our great service. But, as business customers, the expectation is slightly different. They want to be 100% sure that if they order food for an important meeting or a late dinner at the office, their delivery will be perfect. This is where our B2B service brings value, providing business clients with dedicated account managers and catering teams who handle large orders from beginning to end. The human element is key in that kind of B2B service. Deliveroo has revolutionised eating at home and we want DFB to revolutionise food at the workplace.

Q. How did the idea for Deliveroo for Business come about?

It actually started when our founder, Will Shu, moved from New York to London. He realized he couldn’t get food delivered to his office from his favourite restaurants. Coming from New York, this seemed like an obvious service to offer. He started Deliveroo in London to plug that gap. On the B2B side, Will Shu saw the same opportunity. He realised that people wanted great food at the office, without dealing with tedious expensing and invoices. At the time, the offering was limited to boring and expensive sandwiches or salads from traditional caterers. By providing a simple platform with a lot of options and variety for late-night workers while removing the hassle of keeping receipts, and, for office managers to order for their teams, Deliveroo for Business goal is to increase wellbeing and happiness in the office. The corporate catering space is a multi-billion market, so it just made sense for Deliveroo to expand into this space.

Q. Developing a B2B product within a B2C business must be quite challenging at times. Have you faced any challenges internally while building the B2B brand?

A. Stakeholder management is definitely very important, because at the end of the day this is mainly a B2C company. When you’re approaching different teams with a B2B issue, you have to be clear about what you want to achieve and how they can help you and support you because it is quite different to what they do on the consumer side. What is key is integrating everything we do with the longer-term strategy of the business. We have a huge opportunity on the B2B side of the business, and the company does recognise that. But obviously, to grow we need resources and we have to share those with the B2C side of the business. So that’s where we have to really make our voices heard, so that we can get what we need to push forward new projects, exciting new product features, and offerings.

Q. Have you found it easier to get the word out about your services because you have the Deliveroo brand behind you?

A. We do benefit a lot from the Deliveroo brand, but unfortunately a lot of people just don’t know that we’re a B2B business too. We want to both leverage the positives of the Deliveroo brand and all that people know and love about the company, but also be known for the unique service we offer. Workplace by Facebook have done a really good job of that — they started by promoting themselves as the B2B arm of Facebook. We need to find the right balance between harnessing the power of the Deliveroo brand, which is going from strength to strength, and also developing our own identity as Deliveroo for Business, with our distinct attributes that make us attractive in the B2B space.

Q. Even though it presents a challenge in terms of differentiating your brand, do you think having that powerful B2C brand behind you allows you to be more creative in your marketing?

A. The Deliveroo brand is a great asset for us and we do leverage it in our marketing. But I think we need to strike a balance between using that fun image and tone that Deliveroo is known for and adapting it to suit a B2B audience. We want to offer the best service to all our customers, both on the B2C and B2B side of the business, but we recognise that these two customer groups have different needs and expectations. That is something we are working on refining at the moment, as we still want to have that fun side to our communications. So, we’re always juggling between the two and refining where we should be. But, at the end of the day, we’re still a B2B company and our marketing to that audience has to be different. For example, one way our communications really do differ from the core brand is our use of thought leadership. We want to educate our B2B audience on well-being in the workplace and how food can play a key role in that. Whereas, the B2C communications are more focused on selection and promotional offers. That shows how the two sides of the business are fundamentally different — in B2B you need to have more than just a product or sales promotion play. Marketing has to do more to get business buyers to buy into you as a brand.

Q. Are your targeting and segmentation completely separate from the core Deliveroo brand too?

A. Like the core brand, our audience targeting is quite broad. At first, we were focusing on what we call ‘late-night workers’ — businesses that would commonly have people working in the office late at night. So that limited our targeting to things like banks or consultancies. However, now we’ve expanded our offering to include things like catering we’ve had to expand who we’re targeting too. However, how we differ from the B2C side is that we need to look at not only the individual purchasing our solution, but also the end-users. We need to tailor our messaging to reach the different personas in that circle of influence. For example, as I mentioned, we put a lot of focus on how food can improve well-being in the workplace, so we tailor our messaging to speak to HR personnel who will be looking at improving issues like that in their companies, but also the workers who will benefit from those improvements. It can be challenging, because we need to speak to such a wide range of people who have different needs and expectations. That’s what we’re wanting to work on at the moment — delivering the right message, at the right time, to the right people.

Q. How are you personalising your messaging to each of these audiences?

A. This is definitely one of our main challenges. You need to make a decision between not doing things that you want to do or doing them well. It’s not possible to do everything perfectly, so you need to make a call on what takes priority. That’s where we’re moving towards automating as many of our processes as possible, as it allows us to tailor our messaging to different audiences and reduces the amount that we have to do manually.

Q: How are you using marketing automation to streamline these processes?

A. We’re primarily using automation to make processes as seamless and easy as possible for our sales teams. For example, one thing we’ve been doing is linking up our paid social campaigns with our CRM software, so that when someone fills out a form on an ad, that creates a lead in our CRM and then attributes that lead to the right member of the sales team and then pings a message to that person on Slack. Previously, we would have been downloading an excel file of leads, importing that into our CRM and manually attributing the leads to a salesperson. We want to make sure that when someone has an interest in our service, we’re able to reply to that person as soon as possible. Automation is allowing us to respond to leads quicker than ever before.

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