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Social media's significance on the need recognition and information search, in B2B investment decisions of 3D printers.
KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This study examines what significance social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram) may have in regard to clients need recognition and information search, in B2B investment decision making of desktop 3D printers. The study was made on 121 respondents from the 3D printer reseller company 3DVerkstan’s customer base. Need recognition and information search are the two first steps of five, in the consumer behavioral Engel Blackwell Miniard (EBM) model of decision making. To get a better perspective of what role social media have in B2B marketing, a broad investigation of the 3D print owners need recognition and information search has been conducted through a survey built from the EBM-model, and the clients media consumption. A wide range of communication channels has been examined in order to draw conclusions from what role social media play as whole. As social media is an unexplored field for B2B marketing, an interview with the CMO of Telia Sonera Sweden, Magnus Andersson was held to get insights of how they currently use social media in B2B as a best-in-class case. This study aims to give foundational directives for social media’s significance for B2B companies in the technology.

The findings in this study indicates that social media has a great potential exposure to influence and inspire need recognition. Especially for Facebook, decent potential exposure for LinkedIn and Instagram. Not very good for Twitter. Although, almost none were first exposed to 3D printing on social media. Social media was not searched for information, and the few that did searched for reviews. The respondents primarily searched on online sources only. Most respondents conducted one search step where they focused on finding a source with compiled information to conveniently grasp the 3D printer market. Either on Youtube to look for unbiased 3D print reviews. Or through a convenient recommendation from friends and resellers of the most suitable 3D printer in relation to their objective. Technical specification, price, customer reviews, service & support and user case quality caught their attention after finding their preferred source of information retrieval. Convenient personalized packaging in review form with the above stated attributes could be used to inspire customers on social media. Directed towards the use motives; prototyping, hobby/home use or custom production.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 72 p.
Keyword [en]
3D printer, desktop 3d printer, Social media, B2B, decision making, need recognition, information search, consumer behaviour, B2B marketing
National Category
Media and Communication Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-185320OAI: diva2:920118
Subject / course
Media Technology
Educational program
Master of Science in Engineering - Media Technology
2015-09-30, 11:08 (English)
Available from: 2016-04-19 Created: 2016-04-16 Last updated: 2016-04-19Bibliographically approved

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