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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