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Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing

The past 12 months have been big for social media marketers. Each social platform has seen significant changes or upgrades creating opportunity, and adding complexity for many marketers.

Facebook introduced live video, Twitter made it easier to fit your message in 140 characters, Snapchat added collaboration features and Pinterest launched promoted video.

The question on many marketers minds is:  what has truly changed in the way that B2B and B2C marketers approach social media marketing? The new Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner takes a deep dive into the current state of social media on a granular level.

But how does social media marketing effort and success differ between B2B and B2C brands? Find out below.

Both B2B & B2C Marketers Struggle with Social Media Measurement

According to the study, only 38% of marketers believe that they are able to measure their social activities. This is a decline from 2016 and 2015. Additionally, only 34% of marketers believe that their Facebook marketing is effective.

Varying Benefits of Social Media Marketing

What’s working? Well for most B2B and B2C brands, increased exposure and increased traffic rank high on the list. However, when it comes to developing loyal fans, that’s where the numbers start to differ.

72% of B2C marketers versus 64% of B2B marketers were able to develop a loyal fan base through social media marketing.

However, 64% of B2B marketers versus 54% of B2C marketers were able to gain thought leadership through social media marketing.

Top Used Social Media Marketing Platforms

It’s no surprise that the largest social networking platform in the world is the top used platform for both B2B and B2C marketers. Since 2016, Facebook usage increased 1% while Twitter usage declined 8%.

Overall, B2B marketers are investing more in platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest while B2B marketers focus on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

In past years, LinkedIn was the top contender for B2B brands but has since taken second place to LinkedIn (43% versus 37%)

 

Facebook Rules Paid Social Media

 

When it comes to paid social, Facebook is the clear frontrunner. The majority (93%) of marketers use Facebook ads, up 6% from 2016.

B2C marketers are using Facebook ads slightly more than their B2B counterparts (95% to 87%) but it’s close! However, the gap begins to widen when you begin assessing paid social ad usage on LinkedIn. While 29% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn ads, only 10% of B2C marketers invest on the platform.

Are Marketers Really Using Snapchat?

It’s no secret that Snapchat usage has soared over the past year. With over 161 million daily users, it’s clear that consumers (especially millennials) have taken to the platform.

In the next year, 23% of marketers plan on increasing their Snapchat activities to meet that demand. However, only 8% of marketers have actually increased their posting frequency in the past 12 months.

Common Content Types

The type of content that social media marketers post has seen a significant change in the past year. While visual images and blogging reign supreme, live video has made a jump from 28% from 14% in just one year.

The study also found that B2B marketers are more likely to use blogging than B2C marketers (75% versus 61%) and B2C marketers are more likely to use video (30% versus 24%).

What Does the Future Hold for B2B & B2C Marketers?

In some ways, B2B and B2C marketers are on-pace. In others, their approaches are wildly different. As the market becomes more saturated and it becomes harder and harder for brands to stand out, what steps should social media marketers take to catch the attention of their audience?

If you’d like to read the full report, visit Social Media Examiner.

 


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Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing | http://www.toprankblog.com

The post Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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About Daniel Rodgers

A lot of news that you will not see in the paper. A lot of technology that is coming out that will not see in the paper.

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Social Media Secrets: 5 Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

It's plain to see that B2B marketers, at large, see the value in social media. The latest B2B benchmarking research from CMI and MarketingProfs found that nearly two out of three respondents (61%) increased their usage of social media for content marketing purposes in the previous year. Another new report shows that social content is atop the list of focal areas for B2B marketers in the coming year.

It’s also fair to say, based on various data points and conversations with folks in the biz, that most of us feel we could be doing better with social. The size of the audiences on these platforms make them essential to any digital strategy, but breaking through suppressive algorithms and showing clear ROI is a perpetual challenge for brands.

One pivotal key to excelling with social media marketing is understanding all the tools you have at your disposal. Each platform offers a number of capabilities that seem to be underutilized by marketers who either don’t know they exist, or don’t fully recognize their potential impact.

With this in mind, we’re setting out to highlight some of the most useful yet overlooked features for driving results on social media platforms. Today we're focusing on the channel most pertinent to B2B marketers: LinkedIn*, with its member base of more than half a billion professionals.

Take Notice of These 5 Marketing Tools & Features on LinkedIn

Whether your goal is building brand awareness, generating leads, or boosting conversions, these five fundamental functionalities can provide a big assist if you aren't taking advantage of them already.

#1: Robust (and Now Simplified) Audience Targeting

LinkedIn recently overhauled its Campaign Manager tool (the interface through which marketers build, manage, and measure ads) around an objective-based advertising framework. The basic purpose of this initiative was to make it easier for users to align every element of their campaigns with the overarching objective. One of the slickest improvements to come out of this is the audience setup experience, which is now simpler and more intuitive.

From a B2B marketing perspective, the depth of available professional targeting parameters is by far LinkedIn’s biggest relative advantage compared to other social platforms. Nowhere else can you accurately filter audiences based on facets such as Job Title and Job Seniority. This provides unparalleled ability to reach decision makers and purchase influencers directly.

The revamped interface makes it quicker and more straightforward to select a qualified audience in line with your campaign goals.

[embed]https://youtu.be/AAx60JxxWFg[/embed]

#2: Revamped LinkedIn Analytics

The latest Social Media Marketing Industry Report via Social Media Examiner found more than half of respondents (54%) either uncertain or disagreeing that they are “able to measure the return on investment (ROI) for my organic social media activities.”

This is another area of Campaign Manager that LinkedIn recently spruced up. Given that advertising on this platform tends to be more expensive than other social networks, it’s especially important to ensure you’re getting return on that spend. The new reporting experience makes it easier to see results at a glance, and make optimization tweaks on the fly.

The underlying appeal of LinkedIn’s targeting facets also applies to its reporting mechanism; you can get an aggregated look at who is viewing and engaging with your content (i.e., which companies, which job titles, which experience levels). These insights can help you align your LinkedIn strategy and even your content marketing strategy more generally.

#3: Content Suggestions

Can’t figure out what to share on social media? That’s a common enough challenge. The Content Suggestions tab, found on the top nav bar within LinkedIn Page admin center, offers ample inspiration. It serves up a list of third-party articles your defined audience is engaging with — essentially a readily available stream of targeted, trending content.

Not only does this make it easy for marketers and social media managers to find share-worthy content that’s more likely to resonate with their followings, but it can also fuel employee advocacy efforts.

#4: Website Retargeting

Retargeting is a popular digital marketing tactic, which involves serving ads to people who’ve already encountered your brand. The element of familiarity, plus a concrete demonstration of past interest, tends to drive considerably higher clicks and conversions than standard ads.  

Through its Matched Audiences feature, LinkedIn allows you to place a pixel on your company’s website, then serve ads to people who’ve visited it before, while they’re on LinkedIn. It’s a great way to follow up with someone in a different context. One especially savvy approach is to create customized retargeting creative based on the specific section of your site a person visited (i.e., upper-funnel messaging for someone who went to your “About” page, and lower-funnel for someone who checked out a solution page.)

[embed]https://youtu.be/SgXlOH-1pPk[/embed]

#5: Lead Gen Forms

This might be my favorite marketing tool on LinkedIn, and it definitely seems like one that more B2B brands could be utilizing. Lead Gen Forms are leveraged in combination with various types of ads, enabling your company to collect valuable contact info (and additional data about a prospect) from an individual who downloads something of value with minimal friction.

Unlike most gated-asset forms, which require a user to tediously fill out multiple fields, Lead Gen Forms automatically populate based on the member’s LinkedIn profile data. As such, it takes only a couple of seconds to get through the process. Because you’re attaining a more comprehensive snapshot of people who download, you can better qualify them as leads in comparison with other form-fills that often procure only a name, phone number, and email.

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34Xe1E59N6A&feature=youtu.be[/embed]

Step Up Your LinkedIn Marketing Game

LinkedIn can be one of the most valuable components of a holistic B2B marketing strategy. As mentioned earlier, there’s no denying it’s a pricier place to play than most other social networks, but you’re also paying for access to a higher-quality audience. Using the five features above can help you understand, segment, reach, and engage this audience efficiently while closely tracking the impact of your efforts.

Another underutilized tool on LinkedIn is video, which has been a key focus for the platform recently. Learn about all the metrics and specs for video on LinkedIn, as well as every other major social network!

*Disclosure: LinkedIn is a TopRank Marketing client.

The post Social Media Secrets: 5 Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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