Business to business organizations worldwide lag far behind consumer marketers when it comes to monitoring, tracking and engaging with customers on social media platforms, according to new research published by customer experience management company Satmetrix. The research, which is based on 1180 responses from businesses around the globe, shows that 39% of companies have no social media tracking in place at all. But that figure shifts to 51% if you break out B2B companies, compared to 22% of B2C companies.
Most shocking, 69% of B2B companies have no process for responding to customer feedback via social media, compared to 42% of B2C companies. These numbers would be even worse were it not for North American companies skewing the average: 43% of North American companies having a response process compared to only about 25% in other regions.
What about tracking and measurement?
- 67% of companies do not measure or quantify social media – increasing to 75% for B2B companies
- Of those that do measure social media, 56% just count the comments and followers
- Only 4% have some form of sentiment analysis
Unfortunately, these findings are in line with the results of a December A.T. Kearney study, which found that the majority of top 50 global brands ignore fan comments on Facebook.
What gives? Satmetrix quotes Chief Executive Officer Richard Owen as saying that “This is both a huge threat and a massive lost opportunity. Not only are companies running the risk of losing customers by not addressing their issues shared online, but they are also walking past the opportunity to capitalize on positive comments made on the social web.”
There couldn’t be more evidence to show that Owen is correct. Here are just some of the reports we’ve tracked over the last 2 months:
Your Customers Expect You to Be Active On Social Media
- The presence of the Facebook and Twitter symbols influence online buying decisions
- 74% are more likely to buy from companies with CEO social media engagement
- Young Adults (18-34) are twice as likely as older adults to trust brand and product information on YouTube, Facebook or Twitter
- Moms are 75% more likely to trust information from brands on social sites
Social Media Works
- 24% of marketers who measure social media ROI can demonstrate increased revenues
- Realtime marketing strategies improve brand outcomes, leading to increase in positive perceptions; interest in a product; likelihood to seriously consider, choose or try a product or brand; and likelihood a consumer will recommend the brand to others
Hopefully, B2B Magazine is right in saying that social media engagement from b2b companies will continue to grow. Still: if customers are talking about brands online and relying on social media to help fuel purchase decisions, and if those marketers who are using social media effectively are seeing results, why is it that so many organizations–especially b2b companies–are still not engaging in even the most basic social media activities?