November 10, 2013: Every two weeks here at KoMarketing, we have a team training where we sit down as a group and discuss a specific area of online marketing. During our last training, we discussed Facebook and what recent updates and statistics mean for our clients, and B2B marketers in general.
Several of the statistics were eye opening; for anyone who thinks that Facebook isn’t for B2B marketers, it’s time to think again.
According to ZDNet, 1 in every 5 page views in the US occurs on Facebook.com. That’s a pretty big number and it should stand out to marketers looking to reach a new audience.
What it means for B2B marketers: Back in May, I wrote a post “Search: Moving Beyond Your Website in 2013” where I discussed the notion that people are searching places other than Google…one of these places being social. The fact is, people are spending a lot of time on Facebook and they are looking at a lot of pages! As a business, you have an opportunity, and an obligation to your business, to be where the people are searching.
Shareaholic recently released their social media report and the biggest takeaway was the increase in Facebook mobile referrals to publisher sites. While Facebook referral traffic grew 58% overall, mobile referral traffic increased 253% from September 2012-September 2013. That is huge!
What it means for B2B marketers: As online marketers we can’t stress enough the importance of mobile. Forget about Facebook for a second and think about the fact that by the end of this year, there will be more mobile devices on earth than people. Mobile is growing every single year and it’s imperative that B2B marketers make the effort to ensure their sites are ready, their audience can get the information they need, and, more importantly, that the audience can take the action businesses want them to take on their smartphone.
Take a look at Derek’s latest KoMarketing post, “5 Key SEO Action Items for B2B Marketers Optimizing For Mobile” to get started.
According to Social Marketing Forum and Hubspot’s State of Inbound Marketing Report, 41% of all B2B companies that use Facebook for marketing acquire new clients through the network. While that’s less then half, it’s promising to see and I’d venture to say that number will grow as marketers better understand how to make the platform work for their business.
What it means for B2B marketers: According to the Harvard Business Review, B2B customers completed “nearly 60% of a typical purchasing decision—researching solutions, ranking options, setting requirements, benchmarking pricing, and so on—before even having a conversation with a supplier.” Consumers and businesses are conducting a lot of research ahead of time and, with 1 in 5 page views happening on Facebook, there’s a good chance at least a piece of that research is happening on the social network. Facebook provides a tremendous opportunity for businesses to get in front of customers early in the buying cycle and help them become familiar with your brand/products/services.
A recent OpenForum.com infographic discussing how to increase engagement on Facebook had some interesting statistics around emoticons: Using emoticons increases comments by 33%, shares by 33%, and the like rate by 57%. While this may seem like an odd statistic to showcase, what makes it so important to businesses is the idea that emoticons represent human emotion.
What it means for B2B marketers: Whether you sell to businesses or direct to consumer, you must be a real person on Facebook or any social network for that matter. The benefit of social media is that people are able to interact with other people and businesses get to put faces and voices to their brand. While you don’t necessarily have to include a smiley face in every update, the key here is to act like a human, listen to what your fans and customers have to say, and think about what your customers really want from you.
Check out this article from Fast Company, “From Denny’s To Charmin, Brands Try To Crack The Social Conversation” for real life examples and commentary.
According to Marketing Profs and Technorati’s 2013 Digital Influence Report, 18% of consumers follow a brand on Facebook to complain about a product or service. Now, 56% also follow a brand to learn more about their products or services but the key here is that Facebook can act as a review site and businesses have to be paying attention.
What it means for B2B marketers: You must be listening. In this day and age, not listening and responding to a customer or what’s happening on the web can mean a disaster for your brand. Social provides an opportunity to get in front of angry customers, respond to them, and make them brand advocates. It also provides a place for customers to leave good feedback and potential customers to see that feedback.
B2B marketers have to start paying attention to Facebook. While it may not be the #1 focus, ensuring you have a presence, you are listening to customers, and you are giving them the information they are looking for, can be just as efficient.
Have you seen any other stats worth discussing?