For the B2B marketing executive, social media is routinely left absent from their marketing plans – with many believing that its practice should be restricted to the B2C environment. Recent research, however, is proving this reasoning to be false.
Social media is used by technology decision-makers to gather research information, seek problem-solving advice from their peers, and find recommendations on products and services. During these decision-makers’ research process, 93% visit online social communities and more than half are contributing to these communities, according to TechTarget’s report “Similarities in Brand Consumption of IT and Personal Technology.”
Your online content should be easily shareable on a variety of social media sites. Tech decision-makers are active in social media sharing – more than two-thirds of technology buyers are sharing and exchanging tech-related ideas and information.
In order for your company to best utilize social media marketing and reach this audience, it’s vital to understand how technology decision-makers are using each social media outlet. IDG Enterprise’s “2012 Customer Engagement Study” discovered how tech decision-makers are using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.
- B2B technology companies can acquire customers through Facebook. Hubspot’s “2012 State of Inbound Marketing” found that 32% of software and biotechnology companies have acquired a customer through this social media vehicle. Technology decision-makers turn to Facebook to post comments on tech-related topics and ask for advice from their friends.
- More than half of software and biotechnology companies have acquired a customer through Twitter. Technology decision-makers are using Twitter to share or retweet tech news and articles.
- Google+, on the other hand, is used to make sure they stay on top of technology and business trends.
- LinkedIn is the most popular and powerful social media tool for B2B technology companies. 61% of software and biotechnology companies have acquired a customer through LinkedIn. Majority say that LinkedIn provides access to a broader network of peers to ask questions or seek opinions and recommendations. In fact, according to LinkedIn’s “Reach IT Software Buyers” research report, 93% of decision-makers turn to their colleagues and professional networks for trusted advice on enterprise software purchases.
B2B technology decision-makers use social media for every stage in their purchase cycle and each vehicle has its own specific importance in validating their final decision.