2016 Budgets: How Much are you Going to Spend on Social and Mobile Marketing?

By John Sonnhalter, Rainmaker Journeyman, Sonnhalter


Now that it’s time for budgeting for next year, the question is, where are you going to allocate your dollars? There’s always more opportunities than there is money to fund them.

Social media – have you tried some efforts in it this past year? What were the results? What were management’s expectations?

Mobile marketing – Has this been on your radar screen? Do you have plans to be mobile friendly in 2016?

I recently read a post from Jeffrey Cohen at Social Media B2B that highlights the latest CMO results on B-to-B Statistics on what and where money is being spent. You can get complete details here. What’s amazing is that only 23% of marketing projects run by B-to-B product companies use marketing analytics.

Here are some highlights on budgets:

  • Marketing makes up 10% of overall company budget
  • Product companies currently spend 8% of their marketing budgets on social media
  • In the next 5 years, they will spend 18% of their marketing budget on social media

Here are some highlights on social media impact:

  • 54% of B-to-B product companies have proven impact of social media on their business
  • 40% of B-to-B product companies have a good sense of the impact of social media on their business
  • 6% of B-to-B product companies have not been able to show impact on their business

Here are some highlights on mobile and internet:

  • B-to-B product companies currently spend 5% of their marketing budget on mobile
  • In the next 3 years, B-to-B product companies will spend 14% on mobile
  • B-to-B  product companies complete 7.5% of their sales over the internet

Hopefully these numbers will help you in your upcoming budgeting processes.

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Manufacturers: Are you Looking to Build your Social Media Presence? Use LinkedIn.

By John Sonnhalter, Rainmaker Journeyman at Sonnhalter


LinkedIn by far is the best tool for B-to-B users in my opinion. It’s easy to use and the networking options are almost limitless. I’ll assume most of you are on it, but when was the last time you refreshed it?

The 2015 Social Media industry report from Social Media Examiner said 88% of B-to-B companies use LinkedIn and 41% cite it was their most important platform.

Jeffrey Cohen from SocialmediaBtoB.com wrote an interesting article recently on ways you can refresh LinkedIn.

Here are some highlights:

  • Review your company page – What, you don’t have one? Better get going on creating one. Keep it up to date with current news. Consider changing the images frequently during the year.
  • Review results of posts – Track links that drive visitors to your blog or website so you can better understand what’s driving engagement.
  • Add relevant showcase pages – Create topical pages of areas of interest to your customers. It’s a great way to segment your audiences and post content relevant to them.
  • Employee lunch and learn – While we can’t force folks to promote the company, we can certainly encourage them to do so by buying them lunch to explain why and show them what they could do would be helpful. By providing them a standard 2 or 3 sentence description of the company, it will help search results for the company as well.
  • Create a Slideshare deck for employee profiles – create a short deck describing your company. Your employees can add it to their profiles.

If you like this post, you may want to read:

LinkedIn Still Top Performer for B-to-B

How to use LinkedIn to Promote your Innovative Company

What are you Doing to Grow your LinkedIn Connections?

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Why Do B-to-B Companies Ignore Social Media Feedback?

It still boggles my mind that companies who rush into social media ignore feedback once they do get it. I wonder if they do that with traditional feedback? Why get into it if you aren’t going to participate? What I don’t get is why many companies are ignoring social media on a day-to-day basis. The object of the medium is to engage with like-minded people who are looking for information or products.

I recently read a post by Jeffrey Cohen from socialmediaB2, 69% of B2B Companies Ignore Social Media Feedback. He cites a recent study by Satmetrix that shines some light on worldwide social media practices. They interviewed almost 1200 companies from around the world.

“Businesses recognize the need for a social media strategy, however many are challenged in putting an effective strategy in place,” said Richard Owen, chief executive officer, Satmetrix. “While 77 percent of consumers post about products, 67 percent of businesses have no means of measuring what is being said, and less than one in 20 have any insight into the sentiment of what is being said. 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.”

Highlights of the study include:

  • Businesses are blind to the threats and opportunities of social media:
    • Thirty nine percent have no social media tracking in place at all.
    • Fifty one percent of B2B have no tracking compared to 22 percent of B2C companies surveyed.
  • Fifty five percent of companies ignore customers who provide feedback via social media – by having no process in place to respond:
    • This increases to 69 percent for B2B companies compared to 42 percent for B2C.
  • Sixty seven percent of companies do not measure or quantify social media – increasing to 75 percent for B2B companies:
    • For those that do have some form of quantification, 56 percent just count the comments and followers.
    • Only 4 percent have any form of sentiment analysis.
  • Sixty percent of businesses do not have an integrated social media strategy (either do nothing, track or follow-up only).
  • North America leads the way with 43 percent of North American companies having a follow-up process compared to about 25 percent in other regions.

So where does your company’s social media program stack up? Do you have a strategy in place?

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B-to-B Marketers: Are You Using Storytelling to Engage Your Audience?

I recently read a post by Jeffrey L. Cohen from Social Media B2B about storytelling that got me thinking on how folks in our space could be doing a better job of doing just that.

Think about if you’re at a party or other social gathering, where do you find the crowds of people (other than the bar)? It’s usually around someone who is entertaining people. Most of these folks are great storytellers and keep you engaged and interested because of the way they tell the story.

I think all of us in the business community get so involved in the day-to-day grind that all we’re worried about is “Just the Facts” and we’re losing opportunities to engage our customers or potentials in a conversation. If we’re interested in “Just the Facts” then we are not allowing for a conversation to begin, because either we’re too busy telling someone something or trying to get info out of someone.

I think we need to sometimes step back and re-evaluate how we’re talking to customers or prospects, especially if you’re using social media. No one wants to hear about your products, they want to hear how you can help solve their problems. One way to share this info is by telling them compelling stories. Most old timers struggle with this especially in the social media sector that the marketing is now customer-centric not product.

Jeff highlights 4 great ways to use storytelling in your business that will help you engage more people.

  • Company History – Tell your story through the lens of the customer. Be authentic and leave out all the buzzwords. Use key events as sources for stories.
  • Customer Successes – This should be an easy one. Tell how you solved a problem for a customer and even give a quote or two.
  • Employee Activities – People like to do business with people they know, like and trust. Put a face with a name of those in CS or those who are writing for your social accounts. Let them tell their stories and what they are passionate about.
  • Community Support – Every company does something locally. We support and do a tool drive for our local Habitat for Humanity. Let your customers see another side of you and what’s important.

Those are my thoughts on how to use storytelling. Do you have any interesting ones you’d like to share?

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How Do You Share Content If You Don’t Have a Blog?

Doing a blog is a major commitment and lots of us haven’t pulled the trigger for just that reason. But I’m sure you’ve got good content to share, but how do you do it?

Jeffrey Cohen had an interesting post on socialmediab2b.com, 6 Ways to Create and Share B2B Social Media Content Without a Blog that I found to be interesting. You can house great content on your website and use links in social networks to bring them your info. Highlights from Jeff’s post include:

  • Email – When you’re at a trade show or industry conference, take notes of highlights and send them to your customer/client contact list.
  • YouTube – Shoot a quick video (use your phone) with a product manager highlighting one key feature of a product. Post on your YouTube channel and share a link on social sites.
  • LinkedIn – Post status updates. These will be visible to all those who follow you.
  • Google+ – Great place to have conversations and ask leading questions, not to mention the benefits of search results.

So you see, there are other ways to get your presence and expertise out in the marketplace. What are you doing to enhance your expertise?

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