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Industrial Organizations Fail to Recognize Value of Social Media

October 20, 2014

41% of professionals in the industrial sector are using social media to inform their purchasing decisions.

More and more often, buyers are turning to social media for product specifications, reviews, and demonstrations during their searches for new suppliers. Social media is becoming part of the earliest phases of the buying process, and represents one of the best opportunities industrial organizations have to get their products in front of the people most likely to buy them from the very beginning.

According to a recent IHS GlobalSpec (now IHS Engineering) survey of over 1,100 engineers, applied scientists, and other technical professionals, 89% of respondents were directly involved in purchasing decisions about components and services for their employers or businesses. And 74% of them used LinkedIn, the social media site with a professional networking focus. What’s more, the goliaths of social media, Facebook and Twitter, are being increasingly scorned, with flatlined growth rates among respondents who are turning in droves to Google+, which has seen a 78% spike in technical professional users between 2011 and 2013.

Meanwhile, the impact social media can have on the industrial sector continues to be understated. Although most of the survey respondents shun the participatory, interactive element that makes social media appealing for most other industries, their passive consumption creates an opportunity for businesses and organizations to generate specific and unique content that demonstrates their role as industry leaders.

Here are just a few ideas on content you can use to build your social media presence:

  • Training videos and product demonstrations that highlight unique selling features and competitive advantages
  • Conference and trade show appearance promotion to connect businesses with experts and consumers
  • Talent acquisition to recruit the best and brightest of upcoming young talent
  • Whitepaper and independent research that cements your position as industry experts

Social media is currently grossly under- or mis-utilized by industrial organizations failing to recognize both its strength and its nuances. The result is a dearth of valuable content to social media users along the correct channels. The same internet noise responsible for social media’s maligned image among skeptics has created opportunities for savvy companies to connect with audiences in online environments far removed from the hustle and bustle of the commonplace sites. Proper social media management can help put your products and services in front of the right people at the right time. You just have to know where.

If you’re interested in developing specialized social media strategies or content (articles / stories) to better target your messages, we’re here to help.