Social media – core b2b tool or distraction?
It’s a topic that is always near the top of our client’s list of concerns. Are we doing enough? Is everybody else ahead of us? Is it necessary in our business sector?
The answer is social media is now an essential part of b2b selling… but only if you include all 3rd party content under the definition of social and not just the high profile social sites. A recent blog from Cyance identified a few statistics:
- 82% of B2B prospects are active on social media (source)
- 94% of B2B buyers conduct their own research before they make a purchase (source)
- 69% of sales executives say that the buyer journey is changing faster than businesses are responding to it (source)
- 36% of buyers say they don’t engage with sales reps until a shortlist of preferred vendors is established (source)
- 79% of buyers say that a business is more likely to make the shortlist if they have content that is relevant to their needs (source)
CMFG has seen the way prospects buy undergo a fundamental shift over the last 10 years. The stand out statistic from the list above is that now nearly 40% of buyers don’t engage with sales until a tender shortlist has already been defined. That means they have no fact finding or chemistry meeting with a potential supplier prior to the formal bid process starting. B2B prospects are taking purchase decisions based on what the information they acquire online – your website and the content plays a major part in that, but it doesn’t provide any validation or confirmation that your claims are true. That’s essential to buyers and that comes from social media.