New data from the “Social Media 2014 Update” survey shows that less than one-third of B2B marketers are utilizing social media to identify new opportunities and just 4 percent of these individuals use it to gather valuable data on their target buyers to enrich leads.
“Amazingly, SMB owners’ use of social media as a marketing channel is still an untapped gold mine,” said Jonathan Dietrich, senior director of CEB’s Marketing to Small Business Leadership Council. “It generates tremendous amounts of data that marketers should leverage to create new business opportunities and significantly improve sales performance.”
Facebook appeared to be the top social media site among those who were surveyed, and Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter were also used regularly by the respondents. Content pertaining to other small businesses and industry-related issues were most popular among the marketers who took the survey.
“With social media analytics, marketers can add a marketing intelligence layer to their small business marketing strategy,” said Peter Tait, vice president of marketing for Radius. “With the right tools, it’s extremely easy to use social media data to generate new leads that match the profiles of a company’s most successful customers. Sales reps can also use social media data to conduct advance research and improve personalization of their outreach campaigns. It’s all there for the taking.”
The survey, conducted by CEB Research on behalf of Radius, Inc., was geared toward determining how 880 B2B marketers in the small business industry are utilizing social media.
The Rise of Social Media
Although the “Social Media 2014 Update” shows that B2B marketers may not be using social sites for prospecting, more people are turning to these resources than before. The “2015 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends” report conducted by the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs looked at how social media usage has grown since 2010.
Research showed that back in 2010, about 55 percent of marketers said they used Twitter, while 54 percent claimed that they used Facebook. Nearly 51 percent said they logged onto LinkedIn, while 38 percent stated that they used YouTube.
As of 2014, more than 80 percent of marketers claimed that they use Facebook, and almost 85 percent said that they utilize Twitter. An excess of 90 percent say they use LinkedIn, while about 75 percent claim they use YouTube. New on the scene, about 55 percent of B2B marketers also said they use Google+.