Facebook continues to prove a successful platform for B2B marketers survey finds

Time and experience using the social media platform Facebook has proven to be an effective marketing strategy in B2B business with 64 percent of B2B marketers using this social media platform for thought leadership, building business relationships, lead generation and increased exposure.

A recent industry report on social media marketing indicates that 50 percent of businesses with 1000 or more employees felt was effective for B2B marketing - while 64 percent of B2B marketers use social media for 6 hours or more and 41 percent use Facebook for 11 or more hours weekly.

The survey also reviewed the benefits for Facebook for B2B marketers and found that 90 percent of those surveyed say increased exposure with 77 percent citing increased traffic as a plus. Additionally, 68 percent agreed that Facebook provided marketplace insight with 65 percent saying it generated leads and improved search rankings.

Many of those surveyed said their companies have been on Facebook for over two years or more and half of marketers using social media for at least 2 years report it helped them improve sales. Nearly all marketers (91 percent) who have been employing social media marketing for one year or longer report it generates exposure for their businesses. There is also a clear age factor with social media. The younger the marketer, the more time he or she spends on social media. Of those spending more than 40 hours per week doing social media marketing, 54 percent are younger than 40.

Developing business partnerships is one of the biggest advantages to investing in social media marketing, according to the survey and more than half of those surveyed said although they only invest up to 6 hours per week in social media; they felt they were able to build new partnerships. Up to 61 percent of marketers selling to other businesses said they were more likely to build new partnerships through social media.

Businesses also believe that improved search engines have been another advantage. In fact, 66 percent of marketers surveyed have seen lead generation benefits with social media. More than half of marketers with at least one year of social media experience were generating leads with social platforms.

Thought leadership was found to be a big plus in using social media in B2B marketing, with 64 percent surveyed saying they use social media to gain thought leadership.

The survey looked at how in 2016 the majority of B2B marketers will increase activities on Twitter while 66 percent will increase their use of LinkedIn and You Tube. Additionally, 53 percent said they would increase their use of Facebook.

When it comes to types of content, 77 percent of B2B marketers surveyed said they are much more likely to use blogging in content marketing and 57 percent surveyed said blogging is the most important form of content with the self-employed more likely to use blogging (79 percent) than businesses with 1000+ employees (54 percent).

Finally, when asked which forms of content they most want to learn more about, the greatest number of those B2B marketers surveyed said that creating videos took first place as the area marketers most want to learn about, followed by blogging and creating visuals.