B2B companies in Quebec far behind their American rivals when it comes to social media integration

Lynda St-Arneault – 19 June 2012

In our line of work, we perform strategic planning for our clients: market research and strategic development for B2B companies in Quebec. Exo, specialized in the business-to-business sector since its creation in January 2002, has taken on the challenge of working with specific secondary and primary data to respond to sales and marketing issues that our clients meet with on a regular basis.

The difficulty with primary data collection is resolved relatively easily if the client provides the team of experts and the budget necessary to realize it.

B2B secondary data: a true challenge

However, the collection of secondary data for a specific issue represents a real challenge for many companies. This is also true for the major trends in marketing and sales. For example: the need to know the use of social media by small- and medium-sized businesses in Quebec. What could be more mainstream? I challenge you to find the data! Of course you will find a lot of reliable secondary data from the US via Forester Research, eMarketer, ClickZ, BtoBMagazine, etc. But this information has nothing to do with Quebec, so there’s no point trying to weigh, extrapolate or do gymnastics with these US statistics so they fit the Quebec model. The only way to actually obtain this information is to conduct market research with these specific objectives in mind.

We wanted to learn more about how SMBs in Quebec use social media and as there was no data available to date, we conducted our own study.

Why perform this type of study?

1. Because our clients are SMBs from Quebec and we provide them with highly qualified marketing advice.

2. Because SMBs in Quebec are often in competition with each other or with the rest of North America.

3. Because market share, of which social media is an integral part, plays an important role on and off the web.

Study objectives

  1. Describe the use of social media by B2B companies in Quebec.
  2.  Evaluate the integration of sales and marketing in B2B companies in Quebec.

In this blog post, I will limit myself to the presentation of the results of the first study objective by demonstrating on one hand the large and alarming lead that our American competitors have on us with regards to social media, and on the other hand, the figures below that show how working with secondary data can be risky.

It goes without saying that the presence of Quebec SMBs in social media is limited and that at the end of the day, this lag brings about serious consequences for their sales. So if our companies are not at all as present in social networks as their competition, how can they hope to compete on equal footing?

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