Studies show B2B buyers are getting younger and want to engage with companies on social media; B2B marketers are finding social media supports both leads and revenue
About one-third of respondents find new products and hear about brands for the first time on social media. That’s according to a survey of 20,000 consumers by the market research firm GWI. It includes both organic posts, sponsored posts and paid ads.
Stay with me, I’ll bring this back to B2B in a moment.
The percentage of change is notable too. The number of people who discover brands and products online is up between 36% and 40% respectively. This Marketing Charts graphic of the study summarizes those findings:
It’s the change in percentage (the green bars above) that merits attention. And it may be spilling over into B2B. Consider the following:
1. 47% of B2B buyers want to reach sellers on social media
A survey of 410 B2B buyers by GoodFirms in late 2022 found that when they want to reach B2B sellers there are three places they turn:
- 72% want to be able to email the seller;
- 56% want to be able to call the seller; and
- 47% want to contact sellers on social media.
eMarketer summarized the findings in this chart:
2. 50% of B2B marketers say social media contributes most to the top of the funnel
A survey of 358 B2B marketers by Wpromote and Ascend2 in early 2023 found that “half of US B2B marketers say that social media contributes most to achieving top-of-funnel goals.” This was followed by email (43%) and events (34%).
3. 60% of B2B marketers say social media is the most effective sales channel
The same study by Wpromote and Ascend2 also found that “social media is the most effective revenue-driving channel.” Here’s how the answers stacked up when asked which B2B marketing channels drove the most revenue:
- 60% said social media;
- 49% said content marketing; and
- 45% said email.
eMarketer summarized this finding this way:
The B2B buying community is getting younger
The question that remains is: why social media is suddenly so hot with B2B buyers and B2B marketers?
eMarketer says it’s because social media is getting younger. For example, the analysts forecast that “millennials and Gen Zers will make up” about 62% of total” LinkedIn users in the U.S. in 2023.
“The B2B buyer is younger, digital-first, and dominates the share of voice online. They’re demanding, but they’re also more engaged in the buying process. And they look to social content for education, inspiration, and solutions. As the number of young decision-makers only increases, social media’s importance in B2B marketing strategies is growing too.”
It’s a clear sign B2B needs to get its social media affairs in order.
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Image credit: linked sources and “teenager explaining Twitter to an old corporate executive in the style of van Ghoh”