B2B Marketing in India


Business-to-Business Marketing Practices in India, Special issue of Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Edited by DVR Seshadri and Ramendra Singh; Deadline 31 Dec 2009

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Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing (JBIM)

Special Issue on: Business-to-business (B2B) Marketing Practices in India

Call for papers

Introduction: Increasing importance of India in the global economy

India, considered to be an emerging market, is also a prominent BRIC country (Brazil, Russia, India and China), and fast becoming an important hub of the global economy. Matloff (2004) cites a Gartner study according to which, 25 percent of all U.S. IT jobs will be offshored by 2010, from 5 percent today. It is likely that most of these offshored jobs will land up in India. Some industry pundits predict that like the Japanese ziabatsu, and the South Korean chaebols, India too may have its share of successful giants that accelerate her economic growth. Sheth and Sisodia (2006) in their path-breaking book, Tectonic Shift: The Geoeconomic Realignment of Globalizing Markets foresee the world to get fragmented into three main regional trading blocks: the European/African bloc, the Asian Bloc with China and Japan as its center, and the US/North American bloc with US and India as allies.

Learning from innovative Indian business-to-business market management practices

In such a business environment, new and innovative business marketing practices are required. One of the most successful examples of innovative business marketing practices is that of India’s largest private sector steel manufacturer, Tata Steel, which launched a series of marketing innovations such as customer value management (CVM), retail value management (RVM), branding of steel, and many more, enabling the company to exit from the vicious downward spiral of commoditization of steel that was prevalent in India. Similarly, Tata Steel’s joint venture with India’s largest public sector steel giant, Steel Authority of India (SAIL) has resulted in launching an e-sourcing initiative called www.metaljunction.com which is the largest B2B e-commerce platform in India. This joint venture also started an e-selling initiative that has resulted among other things, in dis-intermediation and, collecting statutory sales tax documents as well as receivables from buyers. It is well on its way to become a full-fledged KPO (Knowledge Process Outsourcing) outfit, providing complete order generation and fulfillment services for the sales supply chain.

The promise of the special India-focused issue of JBIM

New B2B marketing practices should engender new B2B marketing theories, which while originating from Indian practice and context, are expected to have wider applicability and relevance. Most B2B Marketing literature presents theories and models that are grounded in B2B marketing practices in developed countries, which are characterized by mature markets. Very little research has been carried out on the issues and challenges facing B2B marketers in different sectors in India. Many of these sectors are growing rapidly, taking up important positions in the global context as well.

This special India-focused issue of JBIM seeks to highlight intriguing practices and resulting theory relating to B2B Marketing and Sales in some of the key industries in India.

Indicative coverage of the special India-focused issue of JBIM

Contributions to this special issue should fulfill one or more of the following conditions:

  • Papers could be from both academics and practitioners in B2B Marketing & Sales
  • Papers that take an interdisciplinary perspective in understanding B2B Marketing & Sales in India
  • Papers presenting new theories or research about B2B Marketing and Sales practice in the Indian context
  • Papers covering any type of research paradigm including: case studies, qualitative research, quantitative analysis, conceptual and empirical research
  • Papers presenting rigorously validated qualitative studies that build new theories or provide a “really fresh perspective” in B2B Marketing and Sales that are relevant for India
  • Papers presenting case studies of not so celebrated firms in India, that showcase innovative Marketing & Sales practices

Papers that will not be appropriate for the special issue are:

  • Papers that are mere replication studies and/or based on validating existing theories in the Indian context.
  • Teaching cases.

Indicative list of topics for developing the papers

An indicative, though not exhaustive list of suggested topics that would be suitable for this special issue would include:

  • Understanding and managing value in the B2B context in India
  • Managing Buyer-Seller relationships in the Indian market
  • Driving efficiency and effectiveness in B2B selling processes in India
  • Customer-centricity in B2B marketing processes in India
  • Role of buying centers in Indian B2B firms
  • Branding in B2B markets in India
  • Pricing issues in B2B buyer-seller relationships
  • Role of supply-chain and logistics in B2B marketing in India
  • Outsourcing/offshoring to India
  • Co-creation of value with B2B customers in India
  • Innovation and new product development for B2B customers in India
  • Segmentation practices in Indian B2B markets
  • Sales-Marketing interface issues in industrial firms
  • Market orientation of B2B firms in India
  • Ethics in B2B marketing and sales
  • Marketing of green products and services in the B2B context
  • Influence of culture on B2B marketing
  • Tendering and purchasing processes in India
  • Online B2B marketing practices and innovations

Additional Dimensions that the paper should address

All contributions should have the following sections, in addition to the specific content of the paper:

  1. A section highlighting managerial implications, based on results from the application of the theories being presented.
  2. For the key ideas presented, a section explaining the relevance/applicability to a broader audience of practitioners/academics in other parts of the world.

Process for the submission of papers

Papers submitted must not have been published, accepted for publication, or presently be under consideration for publication with any other journal. Submissions should be approximately 6,000-8000 words in length. Submissions to the Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing must be made using the ScholarOne Manuscript Central system. For more details, please visit: http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/jbim.

A separate title page must be uploaded containing the title, author/s, and contact information for the author(s). For additional guidelines please see the “Notes for Contributors” from a recent issue of the Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, or see the home page of the journal at www.emeraldinsight.com/jbim.htm. Suitable articles will be subjected to a double-blind review. Hence authors should not identify themselves in the body of the paper.

Deadlines for various stages of processing the papers are

Submission of first draft of paper: 31st December 2009
First review results: 31st March 2010
Submission of revised manuscripts (as applicable): 31st May 2010
Second review results (as applicable): 31st July 2010
Submission of accepted manuscripts in final form: 31st August 2010.
Special issue expected: Late 2010 or Early 2011.

Details for communication

Please address all communication to the special issue editors:

1. DVR Seshadri
Visiting Faculty – Marketing Area
Indian Institute of Management Bangalore
Bannerghatta Road, Bangalore 560 076, India
Email: dvrs@iimb.ernet.in


2. Ramendra Singh
Doctoral Candidate (Marketing)
Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad
IIM Ahmedabad, Vastrapur, Ahmedabad 380015, India.
Email: ramendras@iimahd.ernet.in


  1. Matloff, N. (2004), “Globalization and the American IT Worker,” Communications of the ACM, 47(11), 27-29
  2. Sheth, Jagdish N., and Rajendra S.Sisodia (2006), Tectonic Shift: The Geoeconomic Realignment of Globalizing Markets, Response Books; Sage Publications, New Delhi