How social is b-to-b marketing?

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This past summer, BtoB and the Association of National Advertisers fielded a survey of marketers from both of our audiences and found some very interesting information—including that for many social media platforms, b-to-b marketers are more involved than their b-to-c peers. Fifty-seven percent of b-to-b marketers are using social networks/social media (LinkedIn, etc.) and another 21% plan to use these tactics soon. Of those using these platforms for marketing, a majority are using LinkedIn (81%), Twitter (70%) and Facebook (60%). The tactic is being used primarily for branding (51%) and to a lesser, though growing extent for demand generation (30%). Also, 24% of b-to-b marketers are using blogs, and 43% plan to start using them in the next year. As Paul Dunay, global director of services and social marketing at Avaya, says, “We're using Twitter as a teaser, Facebook as a hub of information, forums as a help desk and blogs as our corporate voice.” What does this mean for us? It's time to integrate social media more completely into our existing sites. IDG was one of the first to integrate outside media platforms into its sites through Amplify. Matt Yorke, president of IDG Strategic Marketing Services, said, “You've got to listen, build your objectives and participate. And participation is an enormous time constraint.” Social media and communities are evolving quickly, and your staff needs to be part of it to understand it. So let's face it: It's time to start tweeting for business and get linked in! Bob Felsenthal can be reached at [email protected]
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