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Using Primary Market Research to Evaluate B2B Social Media Strategies

Posted by Chris Neal

Thu, Apr 22, 2010

We recently conducted research on social media to look at why people become fans and followers of certain brands. We wanted to get a high level view of why people become a fan/follower. Our gut (and some of our own personal experience) told us that many people that become a fan or follower do so because they are already customers of that brand. For the most part our instinct was right. Our research found 49% of people who become Facebook fans do so because they are already a customer. 

The really interesting part is we found over half of those people who are engaged stated that they are more likely to buy and recommend that brand since becoming a fan/follower.   It's clear that using social media as an engagement strategy helps cut through the online clutter and keeps brands "top of mind".

This makes a lot of sense for consumer companies, but is a social media engagement strategy right for harder to reach B2B audiences? The short answer is yes, but not without digging deeper to learn more about who you are trying to reach and where they "live" online.  There are so many social media outlets available today and they are not all created equal and they're not a "one size fits all" answer.

Truly using social media as an engagement strategy may not take a lot of money, but it does take a lot of time. So the best place to start is prioritizing who you want to engage with and then look for the best places to find them and figure out how they want to be engaged in the various social media outlets available.

Recently we worked with AMD, a leading processor company to re-evaluate their social media effectiveness and develop a more optimized and targeted strategy to reach their widely disparate target audiences. It was important to start by looking at each of those targets and then systematically evaluate the true extent and impact of social media usage on each of those audiences.

  • Audience: We used separate research modules for each unique target audience, spanning from extreme B2B to consumer segments
  • Recruiting: We did not use social media to recruit research participants as to prevent sampling bias
  • Techniques: Both qualitative/open-ended and quantitative research

This approach really allowed AMD to refine and optimize their social media content and tactics based on the different behaviors of each target audience. Learn more about this AMD case study at the Social Media and Community 2.0 Strategies event coming to Boston May 3-5.

Understanding B2B Social Media:  An AMD Case Study

CMB's Chris Neal and AMD's Georgeanna Liu will presenting a case study of how CMB helped AMD better understand and capitalize on social media to drive their business. In this session, we'll explain the steps that AMD took to review and refine their social media strategy focusing on very specific target audiences. 

Read more about social media
by downloading our report:
"Why Social Media Matters for Your Business."





Topics: technology research, B2B marketing, social media, Consumer Pulse, B2B research, customer experience and loyalty