How to Reach Engineers Via Social Media

If you are a professional B2B or B2G marketer, you already know: social media has been one of the most promoted strategies, with possibly the lowest engagement outcomes. It is tough to justify the use of social media to the C-Suite who wants to see the Return on Investment. So is social media a waste of your marketing time and resources? Not at all.

You just need to exercise strategic judgment to align the right messaging with the right audience demographics that you seek to engage with and the medium where you choose to post your content.

The conventional wisdom is telling us that the lines blur between professional trade media and consumer-oriented social media; it is now harder to distinguish which is the proper medium to reach engineers where they congregate. However, a recent study, released by IEEE, makes it easier for us to prioritize.

Therefore, engineers are most likely to see your postings where they maintain an account. Be mindful that their account might connect to their personal Gmail, Outlook , or Yahoo account and not their corporate email account.

According to the recent study, here are the top choices by the numbers:

  1. LinkedIn is the king when it comes to finding targeted groups of engineers. No matter what age group you are pursuing, from Millennials to Generation Xers, this medium achieved the highest professional reach between 63%-82%. The more senior the decision maker, the more likely that LinkedIn is your right place.
  1. Facebook comes second as a place where engineers tend to congregate and consume content. It demonstrates that engineers are increasingly expanding their traditional-introverted persona to sharing social postings with their friends and family. By using Facebook’s analytics and audience criteria selection, you could now target them by the profession and age group.
  1. YouTube, Google’s video platform, resonates well with engineers as it allows instant access to How-To Manuals, Screen demonstrations, and product reviews where you can visualize what’s being sold. With the dramatic increase of mobile-based access to videos, expect this trend to grow in the coming months.

Surprisingly, what the recent data shows is that the big losers, for now, are Twitter and Instagram, who have not figured out how to attract engineers with meaningful content. The only social media content that works well on these platforms is communicating with journalists and media for public relations and recruitment communications, such as job postings.

IEEE_Social Media Usage_By Engineers_June16

(Source: IEEE Engineering360 Media Solutions’ research report, “Social Media Use in the Industrial Sector,”)

The bottom line: before you go ‘All In’ on social media, consider your audience’s preferences. It is not about YOU; it’s about THEM and where they feel comfortable consuming and processing the information you wish to promote.