100 Million Reasons to Use LinkedIn for B2B Demand Generation

Click to see whole LinkedIn infographic in new window

Let’s explore some good great reasons why LinkedIn should be your #1 social media channel.

Reaching B2B audiences through social channels is DAILY becoming a more efficient and effective task.

Not that our more traditional options are fading. For instance, I don’t think email will go away in the near future—especially as a tool to reach “known” audiences.

However, for B2B prospecting/engagement, there are simply more options.

I do have one caution for you as you choose your channels: Don’t be seduced by numbers alone.

LinkedIn just announced that it has reached 100 million users worldwide, and is continuing to add 1 million users per week. SWEET!!

But…According to Internet marketing analytics company, eMarketer, Facebook is estimated to have 132.5 million users in the US (this year), rising to 152.1 million by 2012 (they claim to have 600 million users worldwide).

If you had to choose just one, would you be tempted to to follow the (much bigger) crowd?

I’ve debated the pros and cons of Facebook as a B2B demand generation channel, and its reach is very attractive if your audience is active on Facebook and you target them properly.

But as a demand generation resource, LinkedIn gets my more enthusiastic affirmation (today). Despite its relatively smaller audience, LinkedIn is hot, it’s targeted and it’s cost-effective.

Eric Wittlake at Digital B2B offers five reasons to bet on LinkedIn as the B2B breadwinner, and notes that in client campaigns, “Whether measuring page views per visit, time on site, or registration rate, LinkedIn has delivered above average results every time.”

Here are three of Eric’s LinkedIn thoughts that have special relevance for B2B demand generation marketers:

  • Targeting Data. LinkedIn has tremendous B2B data for targeting advertising. Accurate professional profiles, maintained by each of us, group membership, even a business social graph (check out InMaps).
  • Self-contained Programs. With company pages and groups, campaigns can run within LinkedIn. However, one note of caution here: most LinkedIn campaigns are not integrated enough today to take advantage of this. … Companies may be trying to scale these programs too far, and in doing so, are losing the targeting advantages of LinkedIn.
  • Cost Efficiency. LinkedIn may not compete favorably on price with Facebook or Google for pure DR campaigns, but considering the uncluttered space, targeting and engagement, LinkedIn advertising rates are very competitive.
  • Personally, I’ve seen LinkedIn truly shine in several recent B2B demand generation campaigns (targeted at technical decision-makers and business buyers) .

    Anyone out there who disagrees? I’d be very intrigued to hear your point of view in the comments!

    Related links

    Eric Wittlake: Linked in is the new B2b Media Powerhouse

    LinkedIn Blog: 100 Million Members and Counting

    eMarketer: Facebook Users: The Juggernaut Rolls On

    LaurenOnDemand: The Single LinkedIn Tip Busy B2B Demand Generation Marketers Need

    LaurenOnDemand: To Facebook or Not to Facebook? Pros and Cons for B2B Demand Generation Marketers

    3 Responses to 100 Million Reasons to Use LinkedIn for B2B Demand Generation

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