“I usually see a lot of B2C examples; can you tell me about how B2B marketers should use social media?”

For years, literally, I have been asked this question at conferences and client events. And I always have the same answer, delivered with a grin:

“I know that B2B marketers think you are special. And you ARE special… but not when it comes to social; social media is about delivering value to people in order to earn their attention. And your customers are people, right?”

Interestingly, I always expect to get pushback on this answer, but I never have. It’s also very refreshing for me to see that others (leaders in the B2B marketing space) are starting to see, and say, the same thing (and not just in relation to social, but also across all marketing).

In this video, Jonathan Becher, CMO of SAP, speaks to this exact shift at last weeks’ SAPPHIRENOW – noting that marketing in 2011 is really about marketing to people. It may seem like a small semantic difference, but the mindset is very progressive. The video is worth a watch, and Jonathan speaks to this shift specifically at about 7:00 (apologies for the ad off the top!).

[disclosure: SAP is an active SMG client]