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IDG Connect Research Reveals Social Networks are Important to B2B Technology Buyers

IDG Connect’s survey of more than 400 enterprise respondents involved in IT purchase decisions shows that social networking is popular among B2B IT buyers in making technology purchase decisions. Social networking is used by 57% of IT decision makers and compares to:

Search – 58%
Social Networks – 57%
Professional Networks – 51%
Video Sharing – 38%
Review and Recommendation – 38%

“Clearly, buyers are using multiple social media platforms and communities during the purchase process”, says Bob Johnson, principal analyst and VP at IDG Connect. “Buyers want to go to places they trust as they seek insight to make decisions and social media platforms, such as Facebook, have both reach and stature for many people.”

These findings demonstrate that if tech vendors do not understand and utilize multiple social channels to distribute information, they will be less able to engage buyers’ during the decision making process. IDG Connect research showed that:

  • In two years, social-peer generated content alternatives will have a greater purchase reliance weight than editorial and vendor content.
  • IT buyers favor the conversations of vendors that then offer links to virtual events, blogs, and forums.

Some of the more surprising statistics include:

  • 48% use Facebook for ‘general education’
  • 29% also refer to Facebook as they make ‘final decisions’
  • 16% use LinkedIn in the evaluation/implementation stage
  • 7% use Pinterest from research to final purchase
  • 5% use Slideshare across the buying cycle

Johnson says: “If social media conversations are not better understood or connected, vendors run a serious risk of having sub-standard lead generation and nurturing efforts. Be warned; if marketers do not offer relevant links to content and activities, someone else will, and marketers without relevant information will lack engagement to identify qualified leads.”

The full report is available here, http://bit.ly/1cVW8XX.

About IDG Connect

IDG Connect, a division of International Data Group (IDG), the world’s largest technology media, events, and research company, produces, publishes and distributes local IT and business information on behalf of a truly global client base. Established in 2005, IDG Connect has a fully nurtured audience of 2.6 million professional decision-makers from 130 countries, and an extended reach of 38 million names. This lets us conduct research, create independent analysis and opinion articles, and drive long-term engagement between professionals and B2B marketers worldwide. For more information visit www.idgconnectmarketers.com

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