In the meantime, almost all companies rely on social media for B2B communication, and interest is constantly growing. The long-term study “Social Media in B2B Communication” was launched on the “First Working Group for Social Media in B2B Corporate Communication” initiative founded by Jacqueline Althaea in 2010. The survey, which has now been carried out for the ninth time, covers the entire DACH region for the first time. As part of the only long-term study in countries, specific questions from B2B communication are answered to identify trends and tendencies and to be able to pass this knowledge on.
B2B Communication: Top 5 Social Media Are Unbeaten
There is little movement in the top 5 established channels . LinkedIn is the climber. Facebook is the loser for the second year in a row. Classic platforms such as Twitter and Xing are stagnating, as is YouTube. Instagram still plays a subordinate role in the B2B environment. New media play almost no role.
That is a crucial message. Few of the B2B companies dare to try something new – they primarily rely on classic platforms for social media communication. This is also borne out by the names of media that are to be used shortly. For example, Snapchat, Vimeo, or Tikor still do not play a significant role. On the other hand, Instagram has already established itself at over 40 per cent among B2B companies.
B2B Communication: Social Media Impact Not Yet Measurable
The subject of measurability of impact and results plays a significant role. Many participants in the study do not see the added value because they fail because of the measurability of the results. The explanation is obvious: many of these companies do not use any tools to measure success or only resort to free instruments. However, exact and detailed measurability is seen as essential to demonstrate to the line manager how social media activities contribute to the business’s success.
Classically, the central motive for social media activities is addressing new and existing customers. Marketing and communication are not an end in themselves, but primarily to sell products and services. It becomes clear that the importance of social media as an HR tool is growing steadily. However, Facebook and Xing are now being replaced by LinkedIn. Twitter is still the tool for addressing the media and other opinion leaders.
B2B Communication: Professional Support Is Required
The importance of agencies continues to increase, primarily in strategy development and sparring for quality assurance. The implementation of campaigns, i.e. day-to-day business, is, however, less carried out by agencies. In 2020, the increase in social media budgets was at the top in terms of the focus of action, on par (with lower growth) with the expansion of recruiting via social media channels. By building up employees as beacons for social media activities, the external perception of companies is to be optimized and the corporate culture carried outwards.
Design Your Communication Strategy
The study aims to enable communication managers in key positions across industries better access to the design of their communication strategy. At the same time, the study verifies whether one’s strategies are mature or whether fresh impulses need to be set. The contact persons for the survey are all responsible for the communication channels in companies of all sizes. To point out new developments to the respective industry regularly, the study is a valuable trend barometer for those responsible for communication.
Jacqueline Althaea, initiator of the “First Working Group for Social Media in B2B Corporate Communication,” comments: “The results of the 2019 survey are not surprising. In times of full employment, recruiting skilled workers has also become the focus of social media communication in B2B companies. Strategic consulting agencies can look forward to increasing budgets. The results also show a particular uncertainty in the market; traditional tools are used, and new social media platforms are avoided. “
First Working Group On Social Media In B2B Communication
In 2019, the study was carried out in cooperation with Ansbach University of Applied Sciences. The “First Social Media Working Group in B2B Communication” thanks to DMVO and the German-Swiss Chamber of Commerce for disseminating in Austria and Switzerland.