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Rethinking the Business to Business (B2B) label

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Rethinking the Business to Business (B2B) label

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A conversation between researchers, practitioners and educators Prof Merlin Stone (St Mary’s University) and Dr Kaouther Koulie (Bournemouth University).

B2B marketing is an important sector in social sciences and relevant to many academics and practitioners. The B2B label has become out-dated; lacks focus, clarity and accuracy as a descriptive classification; and fails to inspire interest and enthusiasm. This event calls on marketers to rethink the B2B label by engaging relevant stakeholders: researchers, practitioners and educators, in an in-depth conversation on what B2B means today.

About the event

We have organised a half day event where the B2B community: researchers, practitioners and educators, will engage in an in-depth conversation on B2B marketing, to define what B2B is and exchange new ideas about how to advance academic and practitioner thinking in this area.

Following keynote guest speeches to highlight current issues in B2B nomenclature and definition, the audience will divide into round tables discussions to identify solutions. Our guest speakers are Professor Merlin Stone, Professor Len Tiu Wright (University of Huddersfield) and Mike Bernard (Marketing Director of IBM UK) or other senior B2B practitioner. Round tables will be facilitated by Dr Kaouther Kooli, Dr Julie Robson and Dr Elvira Bolat, all of Bournemouth University and specialists in B2B marketing.

Re-thinking the B2B label will give attendees with a better understanding of the depth and breadth of B2B marketing. It will also give attendees the opportunity to widen their network, providing the opportunity for applied research and greater collaboration within the sector.


  • 2-2.40pm: Setting the scene: Professor Len Tiu Wright will challenge B2B marketing as an appropriate label for academic research; she will be followed by Mike Bernard who will provide a practitioner’s perspective (20 min for each speaker including Q&A)
  • 2.40-3.20pm: Three round tables, one with researchers in B2B marketing, one with B2B practitioners and another one with B2B educators will discuss what is B2B?
  • 3.20-3.40pm: Tea break
  • 3.40-4pm: Initial thoughts: Professor Merlin Stone will summarise the themes identified in the round tables drawing on his own B2B experience in research, professional practice and education.
  • 4-4.45pm: Three round tables, each to include a mix of practitioners, researchers and educators to encourage cross-discipline debate to identify workable and practical solutions on B2B - the way forward.
  • 4.45-5.15pm: Future direction: this final session will draw together the themes of the day and actions going forward for the section. It will be delivered a panel of the three facilitators and Chair.

Watch live on Facebook

This event will be broadcast live via Facebook Live to engage with a wider audience of researchers, educators and practitioners. Reactions and comments on Facebook will contribute to the final part of the event.


For more information about this event please contact

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