In 2011, the use of social media platforms for business-to-business companies became more important in the marketing mix than it has in previous years. For many B2B companies, social media can seem to be a daunting endeavor, but with knowledge of how to enter the world of social media, social media can bring success. In this past year, many B2B companies have started to engage in social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn and have found that these sites are generating success for their companies.
“Leveraging social media for branding and awareness-building can help humanize B2B companies, establish them as thought leaders, and offer new touchpoints for connecting with customers and prospects,” said Kimberly Maul, eMarketer writer/analyst and author of the new report, “B2B Social Media: A Growing Focus for Marketers.”
Knowing which social media sites to use and which ones will bring more success for your company can be understood by knowing who you want to reach via social media. Social networking site, LinkedIn, is used more as a professional networking site for B2B companies and is seen as a way to generate more effective leads and other sites Twitter and Facebook are Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, are helping B2B firms reach customers in new ways. In a web survey conducted by iTracks, survey respondents often site Linked In as the top social media site for B2B marketers while putting Facebok and Twitter above as the business minded social network. According to Sagefrog Marketing Group, by the summer of 2011, 58% of US B2B marketers that were engaging in social media used LinkedIn, compared to 50% for Facebook and 43% for Twitter.
There is no doubt that social media is an effective tool for any B2B company and that the use and understanding of social networking sites will remain important for B2B companies in their marketing mix in 2012.