A came across this article detailing a new Forrester report about B2B businesses still hesitant to leverage social media and Web 2.0-related technologies for their CRM and marketing initiatives.
Among the many reasons cited in the report for low adoption, Forrester found that many respondents feel that measurable value will not come immediately from leveraging Web 2.0.
I find that surprising primarily because of the very nature of the customer interaction that the B2B environment brings with it. Whereas B2C scenarios involve high volumes of low-value transactions across tens of thousands of customers, the more hands-on, personalized approach associated with fewer customers in a B2B world seems a perfect fit for Web 2.0 technologies.
Mining internal relationships with external prospects and tracking that into a CRM system, or integrating with a professional networking site such as LinkedIn into account records and lead generation programs could simplify and streamline the sales engagement.
While we’re still not there yet, it’s critical that marketers look at Web 2.0 not just as the next hot IT technology, but as a means to foster deeper social interactions with customers, or potential customers, that they know better then perhaps anybody else.