Research shows that social media plays a significant role in influencing decision- makers during the B2B buying cycle. Forrester research, ‘The Social Behaviors of Your B2B Customers’, describes how B2B decision makers consume content across the top social media channels such as communities, blogs, LinkedIn, and Twitter. And that 42 per cent of B2B decision-makers use Twitter to efficiently make their buying decisions.
The problem is that more than 60 per cent of a B2B purchase decision takes place before the customer contacts the supplier. Which, in turn, means that business owners now have to identify, contact and influence decision-makers as early as possible.
How? Well, with 255m monthly active users (recorded March 2014) and increasing turnover, Twitter has recently invested in some useful changes to their products to help businesses successfully promote their services and, most importantly, generate high quality leads. Introducing the Lead Generation Card.
This is basically an extended, richer tweet, beyond the set 140-character limit with an attached piece of content or media. It encourages Twitter users to engage with your brand content, and asks them to share their email address without leaving Twitter or having to fill out a form.
Code and tags can also be added to these cards so businesses can analyse exactly who’s engaging with what content and what content is most effective at driving people to you website. And if you know that, you can get to your potential customers earlier, before the purchase decision die has been cast.
This month Twitter also launched an enhanced analytics dashboard to help users of Twitter Ads measure the impact of their organic tweets. The new dashboard lets you to compare impressions, total engagements and retweets to help you shape and hone your content strategy. This is further enhanced for large businesses where you can now watch how promoted tweets perform in real time, use a followers dashboard to learn more about your audience and download your own data to slice and dice in any way you need.
At last it seems as though Twitter has seen the value of B2B targeting and is making it ever easier for companies to get on board at a low cost of entry. The next question is: how will Twitter help measure ROI?
Jo Loft is co-founder and client services director at B2B digital marketing agency Fanatica.
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