Saturday, November 17, 2012

Why don't more B2B companies use social media?

Dipping a toe into social media is often a difficult decision for companies in the business to business (B2B) space. Concerns about ROI, coupled with a complex decision-making process, and competing views on the use and value of social engagement, can grind even the most motivated marketer’s social media strategy to a halt before the first tweet is tweeted.

b2b online marketing
Whirlpool Galaxy
(Smithsonian Institution, Flickr)
I’ve spent a number of years working in social media for large B2B companies. I have seen that while there are always employees who understand the potential benefit of engaging in social media and have the desire to do so, most companies find it difficult to make the definitive decision to move forward into uncharted territory. The inaction is driven by fear of the unknown.

Some of the main reasons a company chooses to forego an active and robust social presence follow:
  • Accountability concerns - ownership of the message and accounts
  • Perceived lack of content
  • Concerns over how customer service will be handled
  • Competing objectives between divisions, regions and/or departments
  • Low understanding of social media
  • Not knowing how to track ROI
The above concerns are valid and should be addressed in the social media strategy before engagement begins. Appropriately addressing such important areas before launching can be determining factors to success - both in securing internal buy-in and in benefitting from social media.

Choosing to stay out of the conversation means the conversation will go on without you.

What would you add to the list above?

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