The benefits of social have been evident to B2C companies who can build awareness and take advantage of short buying cycles with consumers, but less obvious for B2B companies. B2B companies are finally grasping the importance that social media can have on business performance – and the positive impact it can have on the bottom line. They are discovering that B2B social media is now a valid tool for engagement, for marketing – and for generating income.B2B marketers often work in smaller teams, with fewer resources, and harder-to-find target audiences. They need a deeper level of engagement and more emphasis on communication, collaboration, and education through longer buying cycles.
Facebook is becoming the most important all-in-one social platform for businesses. For many, the ease and flexibility of Facebook has led them to replace blogs with Facebook, and the growth of business-ready apps like transactions mean that Facebook is positioned to become even more important to business.
These numbers correlate closely – by and large SMBs see social as important to both business in general AND to their individual strategies.
The trend is consistent with what we see and read – more companies are listening to what’s being said about them socially.
Our respondents were middle of the road in rating their ability to generate leads using social. That is consistent with Hubspot data from 2011, in a study of 3,000+ B2B businesses to understand how B2B companies are succeeding with social media. Shockingly (or maybe not), the data revealed that 63% of B2B businesses were not generating leads from social media. This means that, while these companies were generating traffic from social media channels, they were not converting that traffic into leads for their businesses.It points to a disconnect between content and leads. Most of our respondents are using social media (71%), but most of them are NOT getting the leads they want.
Understand what your audience wants to hear from you socially can help you connect with more of them. That’s why it’s so important to measure the results of your efforts – do MORE of what gets a lot of attention!This content is not always about your business. Sometimes what works best to get engagement is purely informational and not promotional. Understanding what problems you can help solve for your customers will give you more credibility with them.
It’s concerning that many perceive that social is not important; this is due to significant percentages of C-level and Administrative respondents, who said that social is not important: when we dig deeper we see that C-level, 24% said it is not important. Admin, 27% said it is not important.Exactly 0 marketers and salespeople who responded to the survey said social is not important to their business. This disconnect needs to be addressed in order to build a case for social in the business as a tool for brand awareness and lead generation.
Most often it comes down to risk aversion or lack of trust in their abilities to make company-wide strategic decisions. Again, it really comes down to making a compelling case for social media. So, how DO you make social media palatable to the folks in the C suite? By making a clear, logical connection between business objectives and social media is absolutely necessary. Connect social to revenue generation.Market apathy – be where your customers OR their customers are.
According to the “2012 State of Social Media Marketing Industry Report,” the outsourcing of social doubled between 2010 and 2011, and is likely to reach 32% by the end of 2012. The top choice for outsourcing social was design and development – but coming in third at 10% was social media content.Businesses recognize the importance of their website as the center hub of marketing activity. Web 2.0 requires a more interactive and integrated user experience vs. the old “online brochure” approach, and companies are recognizing their limitations in ability to create and maintain that standard.SEO is a good item to consider outsourcing, simply because it is so challenging for the layman to keep up with the constant changes, but keep in mind that best SEO expert won’t be able to make up for a less-than-optimized website.
Sbbs survey report v2
Social Business Benchmarking Survey Report 2012 800.425.9843 www.blytheco.com/bamThink.blytheco.com | twitter@blythecollc
Methodology● Online survey● June – July, 2012● Targeted to small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs)● Goal: Learn about where SMBs stand with social media
Business Issues● Do you have a social media strategy?● How important is social?● What tools are you using?● What results are you seeing?● Do you use social to interact with other businesses?● Do you have a social media policy● Do you have a social media disaster plan?
Key points● 71% use social media● 50% have a strategy or plan around social● Marketing is the lead to social● Opportunities for growth in: driving leads, measuring results
Who Responded? Executive/Owner Marketing/PR Sales Business to Consumer Human Resources (B2C) Business to Administrative Business (B2B) Operations Customer Service/Support IT/Technology Other, please specify
Do You Use Social Media?80%70%60%50% Yes40%30% No20%10%0% 2011 2012
B2B-B2C: The Gap is Closing80%70%60%50%40% Yes30% No20%10%0% Business to Consumer Business to Business (B2B) (B2C)
Use of Social Tools: 2011 vs. 201290%80%70%60%50% 201140% 201230%20%10%0% Facebook Twitter LinkedIn YouTube
How important is social?25%20% To businesses15% in general10% To your overall strategy5%0% 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Are you listening to social info about your company? 70% 60% 50% 40% Yes 30% No 20% 10% 0% 2011 2012
Ability to generate leads25%20%15%10%5%0% 0 - Not 2 4 6 8 10 - Getting all producing any the leads we leads want
Keys to social lead generation● Create good content (webinar link here)● Use Calls-to-Action to link content to lead generation● Use forms to get lead info● Keep your content valuable and varied
Do you have the info you need to analyze your social media results?20%18%16%14%12%10%8%6%4%2%0% Have no info Some info Have all the info we need
The info you need to analyze results● Most are middle-of-the-road● If you don’t have info, it’s tough to have strategy● Use tools: Google Analytics, HootSuite, HubSpot, SeeVolution● Track and adapt
Why connect socially to business? Other, please specifyI would not be likely to connect with any company… Thought leadership articles Product/industry events Product/industry news Training A sales/research question. A technical support or customer service issue. 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%
Why aren’t they using social?16%14%12%10%8%6%4%2%0% Social media is not We dont have the We dont have the We dont have the Other, please important to our time. people to devote knowledge about specify business to social media. social media that we need to get started.
Why not use social?● Management concerns ● “Recruiting manager is unfamiliar with how to work with this and is not open to this concept” ● “Boss does not believe it is a priority.”● Distrust/corporate culture ● “We dont want staff on Facebook all day.”● Perceived market apathy ● “Most of our customers dont use social media”
What will be outsourced?40%35%30%25%20%15%10%5%0%
Outsourcing● Doubled 2010 – 2011● Up to 32% by 2012● SEO – always changing, best managed by pros ● But only effective hand-in-hand an optimized website● Web design/development ● Web now is more design-dependent, less text = usability is the key
Who is responsible for social in the org? Marketing/PR Sales Human Resources Executives/Owners Customer Service Other
It takes a village to get social!● Marketing – defining strategy, execution● Sales – voice of the buyer● Executives – support, contributions● Customer Service – listening, responding● HR – setting policy, recruiting
Ready to connect social to leads to results?● Don’t know where to start? ● We can help www.blytheco.com/BAM
● Thank you! firstname.lastname@example.org @aliciakanderson @blythecoLLC 949-583-9500 X 2204