The folks at Leadtail have consistently delivered insights about how executives and digital marketers engage on Twitter. Now it's time to investigate how B2B marketers use the microblogging network.
B2B Marketers on a Mission to Curate
First and foremost, the Social Insights Report: How B2B Marketers Engage on Twitter? shows that B2B marketers are business leaders focused on curating a social media presence that showcases their skills, relationships, and expertise. And while Twitter is clearly their preferred platform, LinkedIn, Instagram and Foursquare followed behind.
Using mostly traditional Twitter clients to send and manage Tweets, B2B marketers are primarily focused on sharing content from industry media sites like Forbes, Huffington Post and the Harvard Business Review. This deviates slightly from the content shared by digital marketers, who are more likely to share content from popular user-generated content sites like BuzzFeed.
Interestingly, when measuring the top social media content sources shared by B2B marketers, YouTube topped the list, followed by LinkedIn and Instagram. While it's unclear what types of YouTube content is being shared, we can only insinuate that it's industry-specific.
Sources of Content & Influence Focus on Industry Leaders
When it comes to the types of accounts B2B marketers follow and are influenced by on Twitter, they're following vendors like HubSpot, Salesforce, Eloqua and Marketo, as well as other industry thought leaders. Additionally, they are more likely to share content from these vendors as well. It's worth pointing out that ShareThis ranked fourth among the top 50 vendors most mentioned by B2B marketers. What this tells me is that many vendors are not getting the credit they deserve because they've not updated their Twitter sharing tools with their site's Twitter handle. As a result, content is being attributed to ShareThis and not the site through which content was shared.
B2B marketers are most likely to retweet content shared by well known industry leaders like Vala Afshar, Jay Baer, Michael Brenner and Jeff Bullas -- all of whom are active on Twitter and publish original content frequently. As for who B2B marketers are mentioning the most in their tweets, Jay Baer, Michael Brenner, Craig Rosenberg, and Mark Schaefer top the list.
Create & Curate Content
There's little doubt that social media can influence B2B marketing and this report shows that most are leveraging quality content written by quality sources. And while most are using Twitter to promote curated content, B2B marketers are behooved to promote their own content so that prospective customers can understand how industry trends apply to their own offerings. Additionally, the report also highlights the need for publishers everywhere to optimize their site for social sharing so credit can be attributed appropriately.
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