Using Product Variables of Business-to-Business (B2B) Media to Assess the Impacts of Social Media

Dan Zhang

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An original approach uses the three variables of timeliness, confidentiality, and utility of business-to-business (B2B) media products to study the impacts of social media. Interviews with B2B media practitioners in the UK reveal that social media have partially and weakly influenced the timeliness and confidentiality variables but have no effect on the basic utility of B2B media. Social media formats are therefore not so much in competition with B2B media, more a useful tool. B2B media practitioners attempt to control and adjust these variables to make their products more attractive. A social media optimisation publishing cycle was identified as a response to the impacts of social media in particular. But other adjustments mostly responded to competition forces greater than social media. This is one of the first studies of B2B media to examine their full product ranges. It proposes future directions of research in this under-examined media sector.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-48
Number of pages17
JournalWestminster Papers in Communication and Culture
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use,
distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture is a peer-reviewed OPEN ACCESS
open access journal published by University of Westminster Press


  • business-to-business (B2B) media
  • impacts of social media
  • media product strategy
  • trade press and journalism
  • social media competition and disruption


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