Only 8% of B2B Companies Heavily Engaged in Social Media

According to a recent study by Accenture, only 8% of B2B companies would describe their social media usage as extensive. This is in contrast to the 65% of respondents who indicated that social media is extremely or very important. And let’s not forget the 26% who are not engaged or slightly engaged in social media.

We keep seeing studies about social media adoption that are wildly different from the reality we see when talking to B2B companies. Many surveys seem to aggregate the data in ways that create screaming headlines that cause people to share them with their social networks. It’s important to look at the data beyond the headlines. This particular study shows a large number of B2B companies are engaged at some level, but that could mean they created a Twitter account and don’t what to do next.

The survey discovered that the cause of the difference between heavy adoption and its perceived importance is due to a lack of resources and confidence. 50% of marketers surveyed felt they needed new tools and technologies to manage their social media efforts and 40% indicated that their team was not properly trained to take advantage of social media. This is compounded by the 20% who were not confident that they had enough information to make the right decisions to move forward.

There’s lots more information in the full report, including the importance of expanding social media beyond marketing and the adoption of a social CRM model, and you are bound to find something that can help your next conversation, presentation or conversation with the boss. Here’s a link to the free report: Making Social Media Pay – Rethinking Social Media‚Äôs Potential to Bolster B2B Interactions, Customer Loyalty, Revenues and Brand Reputation.

What else about the report resonates with you?

Comments

  1. says

    Jeffrey,

    Interesting post – when you couple it with the data that shows online lead generation drives higher growth and profitablity, it just shows the opportunity to help these B2B companies market more effectively to their customers.

    Dan Smink

  2. says

    Thanks for sharing, and an interesting read.
    What stood out for me about the report (aside to what you have already pointed out) was a reference to a trend in companies establishing their own custom social communities in order to foster ideas and collaboration in relation to their larger business objectives.
    It will be interesting to see how this will develop and what tools will follow.

  3. says

    I think this is actually very close to the mark. Here’s the thing I’ve noticed: most of the B2B companies that describe themselves as “heavy” users are those who use the platforms with their support teams to address customer issues in a public forum. From a sales/marketing perspective, it’s much more difficult to utilize social platforms for anything other than PR and employee morale, as B2B sales cycles are typically much longer and more solution-based, rather than transaction-based in nature. This is not to say it can’t be done, but it’s certainly more finessed than “Free shipping this weekend if you use our Facebook code!”

  4. says

    Thanks for sharing this inside view, if you want to read my translation of this article in German, visit: b2bcommunity.org – Looking forward to your book, which I recently bought at amazon.

  5. says

    Great read. Thanks. It will be interesting to see how this evolves. My take is that most of the meaningful social media B2B interaction will be via future Social CRMs with more advanced CRM capabilities and tighter SM integration. LinkedIn has already moved a little closer to that model with their acquisition of the Connected Social CRM.

  6. says

    Another day, another social media survey. I think this is one much closer to the mark than most as some talk about expansive take up which I don’t believe is the case.

    Many b2b focused companies are yet to comprehend the significant shift that is going on and the need to be more social, more responsive and more engaging with their content. It isn’t enough to have one person looking after your social profile, the company needs to be social.

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