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Why tech vendors should pay attention to LinkedIn

Why tech vendors should pay attention to LinkedIn

LinkedIn. It’s the most popular social networking site for business-to-business professionals. But if you’re in the tech field, LinkedIn plays an even more important role, according to a recent report.

The new information results from a survey in which LinkedIn queried 5,241 global professionals who recently “participated in or influenced the purchase of various hardware or software solutions,” reports Social Media Today.

According to the report, titled “Technology Plays an Essential Role in Driving Smart Business for Today’s Dynamic World of Work,” buyers of technology make enlightened decisions based on input from online communities, as well as internal peers.

Characteristics of tech purchasers

Tech vendors should take note of the characteristics shared by tech purchasers, according to the LinkedIn report:

  • Tech purchasers are collaborative, seeking advice from online sources as well as colleagues.
  • Tech purchasers use that advice to identify, vet, research, purchase, implement, and renew business technology solutions.

The buying habits of tech purchasers makes the decision-making process for buyers quite complex. It also creates a competitive landscape for vendors.

Key takeaways from the LinkedIn survey

Tech vendors should make sure they have a well-developed presence on LinkedIn, which in April reported it is seeing “record levels of engagement” among its 610 million users. Remember: LinkedIn makes up more than 50% of all social traffic to B2B websites and blogs.

More advice includes:

  1. Know your audience. Within the next few years, millenials, those born between 1981 and 1996 and comprising 25 percent of the population, will be making more than 50% of the tech purchasing decisions. What’s more, there are 87 million millennials on LinkedIn, with 11 million in decision-making positions.
  2. Know your users. 4/5 of employees impact tech purchase decisions.
  3. Make your content informative and worthwhile. Why? Ninety percent of tech buyers look to the outside for useful information. And most Fortune 500 decision-makers and executives like to spend their spare time on LinkedIn, reports Foundation. They are looking for valuable content. So make sure you provide it.
  4. Make your brand stand out. It should convey trust, dependability, quality, support, and service.
  5. Make sure your marketing and sales messages align. Both should align.

More LinkedIn stats

  • 630 million members; 303 million users, according to figures out this month
  • 90 million LinkedIn users are senior level influencers and 63 million are in decision-making positions
  • 27% of adults use the platform
  • 29% male
  • 24% female
  • 28% white
  • 24% black
  • 16% Hispanic
  • 44% of 25- to 29-year-olds use it
  • 49% have incomes of $75K+
  • 51% have college+
  • 70% of users are outside the U.S.

We can help with your LinkedIn presence

Social media, including LinkedIn, is a key element for marketing success. If you’re not sure how to do your own social media, reach out to Triple Canopy Media. At Triple Canopy Media we would be glad to show you how it’s done. Or do it for you.

Here’s what we do:

  1. We assess your needs, determine which social media platforms will best serve them, and set up a regular process for sharing carefully crafted content about your business via selected platforms.
  2. We create a cohesive strategy and measurement plan.
  3. We integrate the plan across the organization.
  4. Finally, we use metrics to monitor content marketing performance and ROI.

Social media aligns connection, customer service

Social media aligns connection, customer service

Connection. That’s what social media is supposed to be all about, right? But if the research is to be believed, that depends.

When researchers surveyed undergraduate students, they got a different answer. Most of the undergrads said they used social media to alleviate boredom. Results from another survey showed that the emotion most often elicited by social media was envy, not connectedness.

A third study showed that people who had used Facebook felt less satisfied with their lives. The more they used it, the more their satisfaction dropped. Ouch!

Activity and engagement create energy for your business

Active Facebook users experienced the opposite. Those who engaged with content, left comments, and used the chat feature felt better, not worse.

What does this mean for your business? If you want to reach the mainstream and promote growth, provide entertaining content that encourages connections on social networks.

Because if we prompt our audience to become active, rather than passive, consumers of content, we will satisfy the needs of our own business and make our consumers happy as well. We create energy, rather than fatigue. We create followers . . . and they create followers, and the beat goes on.

So go ahead. Share content that promotes action. Promote your events. Create interactive user experiences. Provide information people can use. Then be direct in encouraging people to share it and to use it.

Remember the customer service angle

However, there’s another angle on this. And that angle is customer service. Customers who post questions to a business or brand via social media expect a response within four hours, according to some. But other research says that window is even smaller, indicating that whether a question is posed on Twitter or Facebook, users expect a reply within an hour. Yes, one hour.

That kind of response rate is rare. And as it turns out, getting a response at all is uncommon. That’s because companies ignore 70% of Facebook questions. Yep. Seventy percent. As hard as it is to believe, when Facebook followers post their questions online, only 30 percent of them get their questions answered.

When you consider that connecting with consumers is the goal of having a presence on social media, failing to reach out and answer the queries posted by consumers is self-defeating. Particularly when statistics show that customers receiving a response on Twitter spend 20 percent more and recommend brands 30 percent more actively

Stand out like Starbucks

With businesses failing so mightily at connecting with their consumers, it seems easy to stand out just by improving customer service. That means:

  • providing interactive, shareable content,
  • asking consumers to use it and to share it, and
  • answering customer service questions quickly and completely.

Take Starbucks, for example. The chain keeps its social media profiles ups to date, interacts with customers, responds to their every issue by delivering efficient and uninterrupted customer support, and considers meaningful feedback valuable. It even established a separate Twitter account with the handle @MyStarbucksIdeas to receive customer queries. It now has more than 51,000 followers.

Reap the rewards

Reap the rewards of social media platforms by connecting with your customers and improving your customer service. Deliver interactive and professional content; listen to your customers; build an online community by setting up a Facebook group for your customers to join; and respond promptly to their questions, reviews, and comments.

You’ll help generate revenue, improve your online visibility, and expand your customer reach.