Social Media Best Practices for B2B Marketers Still Emerging

Social Media Concept

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Forrester Research anticipates that B2B companies will spend $54 million on social media marketing in 2014, up from just $11 million in 2009.

Will that spending make a difference for B2B companies looking to increase lead generation and sales? Without a clear strategy tied to measurable objectives, it will certainly be hard to prove the needle has moved.

That’s why recent survey results from Pardot, a cloud marketing automation software vendor, captured my interest. Its study found that nearly 30 percent of the B2B marketers it surveyed are not tracking the impact of social media programs on B2B sales today. Input came from dozens of B2B companies.

Another interesting finding from the study was that among those who do monitor the return on spend, 42 percent said zero or an uncertain number of sales leads resulted from social media programs. Twitter was the most popular social media channel, followed by LinkedIn and Facebook.

What’s the policy?
One of the challenges for marketers is that best practices in this area are just emerging. Just 11 percent of marketers said their companies have a formal social media policy.

“There’s no question social media can be a powerful tool for establishing community and generating leads,” said Adam Blizter, co-founder and COO for Pardot. “But to optimize value, social media efforts should be monitored carefully and integrated into broader content and lead nurturing programs.”

Emerging: best practices
Other insights uncovered in the survey show there is some confusion among marketers about social media etiquette, including how to contact a sales lead and the appropriateness of critiquing a competitor using social media.

“Social media is an exciting and enticing sales and marketing medium, but best practices are clearly still emerging,” noted Blitzer.

Do you measure the results of your social media efforts? Are there particular tools that help in your analysis?

You might also enjoy Should Your Business Avoid Social Media?

Have you read A 5-Point Checklist for Business to Business Social Media?

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About creativeconsiderations

Christine Sullivan is a communications strategist with expertise in communications planning, writing and content development, and executive communications. She can be reached at mycreativeconsiderations@gmail.com.
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One Response to Social Media Best Practices for B2B Marketers Still Emerging

  1. Pingback: How Much Time Daily Should We Devote to Social Media? | NetWorldingBlog

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