• BURN MEDIA
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Ventureburn
      Startup news for emerging markets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

What communication channels are the decision makers in your industry using?

If you speak to any good marketer they will tell you that the first thing you should do before anything is conduct research. For online marketers, you need to know where your clients and prospective clients are, what platforms they prefer, what they use to consume content, what type of content interests them and the format of the content they find most appealing.

I am sure you will agree that if you were armed with this information, you will be in a better position to develop an online marketing strategy. Here is the result of research conducted amongst more than 1600 decision makers.

Industries

Respondents to the survey represented eighteen different industries namely Agriculture, Automotive, Aviation, Banking, Construction, Consumer Business, Financial Services, Healthcare, Insurance, Manufacturing, Media, Mining, Oil and Gas, Power and Utilities, Public Sector, Technology and Telecommunications. The top five industries participating in the survey were:

  • Financial Services – 15.92%
  • Manufacturing – 10.87%
  • Banking – 8.98%
  • Mining – 7.92%
  • Telecommunications – 5.51%

Countries

Even though the survey was presented to a global audience, most of the respondents were from South Africa. In all, 1079 responses were from South Africa (67.99%) followed by Kenya (10.40%), Nigeria (5.36%) and Namibia (2.71%).

Job Categories

Fifteen job categories were presented to the subscribers. The top five job categories were Executive Management (32.89%), Finance (19.17%), Human Resources (12.78%), Information Technology (6.86%) and Audit (4.44%)

Communication channels of preference

This is where it gets interesting. We asked respondents to rank seven different communication channels in order of preference and here were the results with the most preferred on top.

  • Email
  • LinkedIn
  • SMS
  • Telephone
  • Post
  • Twitter
  • Google+

Which platforms if invited?

When asked if we may send invitations to connect on a series of platforms, these were the responses received where the respondent answered YES.

  • Email – 98.53%
  • LinkedIn Groups – 71.63%
  • LinkedIn Company Page – 70.70%
  • Company blog – 67.63%
  • Mobile apps – 56.79%
  • Twitter – 41.25%
  • Facebook – 37.10%
  • Google+ – 34.34%

Where do the respondents access business-related content?

  • Laptop or desktop – 95.95%
  • Smartphone – 56.14%
  • Tablet – 47.72%

Bottom line

A high level analysis of the results of the survey seems to indicate that if you plan to connect and interact with Executive Management, Finance, Human Resources and Information Technology decision makers, these individuals’ top four communication channels are email, LinkedIn, SMS and telephone.

They are more likely to accept invitations to subscribe to email before anything else, followed by your LinkedIn groups, LinkedIn company page, company blog and mobile apps. The last three, in order of preference are Twitter, Facebook and lastly Google+. Desktop and laptop computers are still top of the list in terms of how they consume content followed by smartphones and tablets.

Image: Jason Howie via Flickr

Author | David Graham

David Graham
David Graham's passion is business-to-business digital marketing with a specific focus on value networking and inbound marketing. He consults on business-to-business digital marketing strategy and execution, with an emphasis on building sales pipelines and generating new prospects More
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