Many reports, especially since the start of the pandemic, have called attention to the rise of consumer dependence on social media which is also good news for B2B (business to business) marketers. But that’s just the start. Despite the optimism, that’s just the start of any strategy in leveraging the popularity of social media for B2B firms. What’s trending?
LinkedIn continues to be the favorite source for B2B leads. Linked in reported that 80% of marketing leads come from their platform and the platform said it appears that the trend will continue.
At the same time, Facebook continues to be a growing source of leads with the potential for more in the future. The platform had a surprising revelation. It reported that on average, B2B decision makers spend 74% more time daily on Facebook than other users. So what are the next steps?
Securing new leads from social media can be exciting but many brands don’t act on them quickly enough. Today’s consumers expect results almost instantaneously. The challenge is that many companies still manage lead imports and data scrubbing manually. The result is that the time it takes to do this can often result in a lost deal or customer. Speed is important and investing in programs that can expedite leads is essential.
Connecting CRM systems or marketing automation systems to social platforms may speed things up but without data quality processes in place, this still doesn’t “hit the mark.” Unless social lead data is standardized and validated, many of these leads can be duplicate records that waste the sales department’s time and take up extra space. The quality of data is important. Speed, efficiency, and accuracy are paramount.
While LinkedIn has been acknowledged by marketers as a major source of B2B leads, marketers should seriously include Facebook for the reason noted above. Not only might Facebook be more cost-effective, but utilizing both in the future can be tremendously beneficial. Their lead ad forms make it easy and painless for potential buyers.
Data from LinkedIn showed that Facebook is closing the gap on B2B leads. It reported that 59% of B2B marketers get leads from Linked In, while 26% obtain theirs from Facebook and other social media platforms. While trailing, Facebook does offer tremendous reach and should be considered in B2B lead strategies.
One of the big consumer challenges is the time it takes to fill out information. Short forms are tremendously convenient and valuable in increasing conversion rates. Serious consideration should also be given to investing in a program that will auto fill existing consumer data.
Brands that can afford API (application programming interface) would do well as both LinkedIn and Facebook can connect lead data into just about anything. Having that ability will save a tremendous amount of time in getting information into a database.
At the end of the day, it comes down to this. Both LinkedIn and Facebook can measure conversions but it’s up to marketers to finish the process. Each lead must be tracked down the sales funnel until it either results in a sale or signed agreement.
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