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FACULTY OF ECONOMICS AND BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, UNIVERSITY OF OULU WORKING PAPERS ____________________________________________________________

________ No. 29 ____________________________________________________________


Tuula Lehtimäki, Jari Salo, Heidi Hiltula, Mikko Lankinen




OULU 2009

Tuula Lehtimäki Jari Salo Heidi Hiltula Mikko Lankinen Taloustieteiden tiedekunta Oulun yliopisto Faculty of Economics and Business Administration University of Oulu Osoite: PL 4600 Address: 90014 Oulu, Finland Puhelin: Phone: +358 50 4675154 Salo

Telefax: +358 8 553 2906 e-mail: Tuula.Lehtimaki@oulu.fi Jari.Salo@oulu.fi

ISBN 978-951-42-9119-7 ISSN 1459-8418 ISBN 978-951-42-9120-3 ELEKTRONINEN VERSIO Oulu University Press April 2009

Tuula Lehtimäki, M.Sc. (Bus. Adm.), M.Sc. (Tech.) Jari Salo, Dr. (Bus. Adm.) Heidi Hiltula, M.Sc. (Bus. Adm.) Mikko Lankinen, student

University of Oulu, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration

Harnessing web 2.0 for business to business marketing Literature review and an empirical perspective from Finland


The purpose of this report is to round up current literature and other published sources on harnessing web 2.0 for business-to-business marketing and add an empirical perspective on the subject from Finland. Web 2.0 means technologies that enable users to easily communicate, and organize, create and share content. By web 2.0 tools, we mean blogs and podcasts, social networks, communities, content aggregators and virtual worlds. Based on the literature review we present pros and cons of every tool for marketing purposes. Among the examined Finnish industrial firms the utilization of web 2.0 is still low, but blogs, wikis and video sharing raised some interest. Overall, web 2.0 provides firms with benefits still largely unexplored, and we believe that the importance of internet marketing will continue to grow.

Key words: Web 2.0, Internet, Business to business marketing, Industrial marketing ___________________________________________ Space does not permit the authors to name all the interviewees and the members of the DECCMAC project group who were of such help to them, but they would like to thank all involved. We also wish to convey our thanks to Tekes.

Executive Summary
Web 2.0 means technologies that enable users to communicate, create content and share it with each other via communities and social networks easier than before, and to have real life experiences in virtual worlds and to organize content on the internet with content aggregators. The number of web 2.0 users has been growing so rapidly that it has become an important channel for marketers to reach their customers. As B2C companies have already managed to create successful web 2.0 campaigns B2B marketers have also begun to investigate how to harness web 2.0 in their marketing efforts. In addition, B2B buyers are already using the internet as one of their main sources for information gathering. Hence, it is important to B2B marketers to be present in those channels where their customers are. Benefits and difficulties of using web 2.0 tools based on the literature review are summarized below. Strengthening and expanding customer relationships, Brand building Lead generation Employee communications, Enhancing communication in partnerships Enhancing communication in R&D Demand generation Lack of support by top management Lack of metrics of measuring effectiveness of web 2.0 marketing Technical challenges if marketers do not know how to utilize different web 2.0 tools Maintaining web 2.0 tools demands commitment to continuous content generation and maintenance and it takes a lot of time and effort to maintain the chosen marketing strategy

Web 2.0 tools can be grouped into blogs and...
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