Social media: there is more to have

Category: Digital

Social media is changing from a communication derivative to an independent communication channel for many B2B companies. However, this also leads to more time being spent on implementing the social media strategy and even to a decline in social media use among B2B companies in Germany, as a study on the most important B2B social media trends has now found out.

Before you start looking for it: no, Tiktok simply does not appear in this text or in the latest B2B social media study, which has now been presented by the DMVÖ and Ansbach University of Applied Sciences in cooperation with WEKA Industrie Medien. Even if the Chinese project has more than one billion users worldwide - B2B companies will still not be able to reach their goals there due to a lack of suitable audience and content expectations.

What threatens - and this is one of the most important conclusions of the study - is a massive risk of fragmentation: with more and more new social media channels and at the same time professionalisation and higher expectations of the users, more and more resources have to be put into the use of the channels. Companies are therefore advised to get involved where the quality of implementation and the target group can meet and where there is a good match. not to embark on more and more social media adventures. The presumed coolness of a channel rarely translates into applicable KPIs.

For the first time - at least among German B2B companies - the use of social media channels has dropped from 95.7 to 92.9 percent. Austrian companies have now overtaken German ones: of them, a remarkable 95.1 percent use social media in 2019.

Resource issue

The fact that social media has meanwhile evolved from a sideline channel and mere distribution tool for existing content into a real medium is also shown by the reasons why companies do not engage with social media: 56.6 percent stated in the latest study that they have too few resources for social media. In 2018, the figure was 47.4 percent. In 2019, a whopping 58.8 percent of respondents said they spent too much time on social media, compared to 42.1 percent in 2018.

At the same time, however, the number of those who assume that social media is incapable of contributing to the success of a company is also falling: from 39.5 percent in 2018 to only 26.4 percent.

At least among Austrian companies, LinkedIn is in the process of replacing Facebook as the primary platform: 71.8 percent of domestic companies use the Microsoft platform - an increase of more than twelve percent compared to 2018. Facebook is used by 72.8 percent, a weak increase of 3.5 percent. In both Germany and Switzerland, on the other hand, LinkedIn has moved to the top of the channels.

Less day-to-day business

Although agencies are becoming a partner for many companies in the development of a social media strategy, in day-to-day business companies tend to rely on their own expertise: while in 2018 more than 41 percent of the companies surveyed still entrusted agencies with the implementation of campaigns, in 2019 this figure is only 28.6 percent. Agencies are now also much less involved in the conception of guidelines. So it's quite possible that companies have now sufficiently staffed their marketing departments with appropriately trained personnel and that outsourcing may no longer be so necessary in day-to-day business.


More and more are allowed to post

At the same time, companies are increasingly relaxing previously rigid rules about who can post what: 26.2 per cent of companies said they support allowing any employee to post for the company, up from 21.7 per cent last year. This suggests that many companies have now set up corporate influencer programmes and that employees are valued as an asset for their own credibility. Platforms like LinkedIn, whose importance is increasing overall, support this view: Personal accounts have a much higher reach than corporate pages.

By contrast, the persistence of basic misconceptions about the function of social media platforms is somewhat frightening: for many companies, the ability to publish their own press releases is still an important reason to be active on the channels. In fact, followers, subscribers and friends are more likely to react with ignorance to the publishing of First-person content without potential for interaction or dialogue react.

You can read the whole study download here free of charge.

Author: B2IMAPCT - The agency for impact and results



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