Why Facebook Beats LinkedIn for B2B Marketing in Japan

Why Facebook Beats LinkedIn for B2B Marketing in Japan – APAC in 3 – Episode 08

As the world’s third-largest economy, Japan is an opportunity-rich—but hyper-localized—market for B2B brands to penetrate.

This makes choosing the right channels for the right audience even more critical.

Case-in-point? Facebook is more effective than LinkedIn for B2B marketing in Japan.

Because Japanese people view LinkedIn as more of a job search site than a professional networking platform, Facebook is where business decisionmakers live and breathe on social in Japan.

Of course, LINE, Instagram, and Twitter are also super popular, but their B2B scope is limited: LINE is mainly a mobile messaging app, Instagram is more lifestyle- and consumer-oriented, and Twitter is rife with anonymous accounts, which the Japanese feel make the platform unreliable for business.

Check out APAC in 3 (EP 08) to discover why Facebook—not LinkedIn—is the most effective B2B marketing platform in Japan.

Facebook Is Used for Business Networking in Japan

Facebook is widely used for business and work in Japan—whether that’s networking or establishing a social base for a company or service. This makes the role and scope of Facebook in Japan akin to that of LinkedIn for the rest of the world.

In fact, 80% of Japanese enterprises use Facebook—not LinkedIn—for business networking, and out of that, 57% operated in B2B.

Additionally, most of Japan’s LinkedIn users have either worked internationally or are in HR-related fields, such as recruiting. So, Japanese people view LinkedIn as more of a bilingual or international job search site rather than the professional networking platform it is viewed as in the rest of the world.

Also, compared to LinkedIn, Facebook’s privacy controls—like who can see a particular post—are favorable among Japanese users, who tend to be more conservative—a sense of low self-disclosure that stems from Japan’s cultural trend towards politeness.

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Japan’s C-Suite Decisionmakers Are More Active on Facebook 

Although Japanese LinkedIn members have risen slowly in recent years (6.7% YoY), LinkedIn has just 2 million users in Japan compared to the country’s more than 22 million on Facebook, which makes up over 17% of Japan’s population who are 13 or older.

And speaking of age groups, Facebook has a larger userbase of people over 40, which is the prime age of Japan’s C-suite decisionmakers, who are also distinctly more active on Facebook over LinkedIn.

This means you can reach more senior-level managers and stakeholders who impact business decision-making with the right Facebook ad targeting.

Facebook has More Options For Targeting Japanese User Groups

Facebook also has more advertising options than LinkedIn, most notably interactive ad formats—like Slideshows, Carousels, and Collections—which are ideal for showcasing products and services visually in a way that resonates with audiences.

Additionally, community, interest, and business groups are prevalent among Japanese Facebook users, and you can mine these groups for data and insights to inform your ad targeting on Facebook.

And while cost-per-click (or CPC) is highest on LinkedIn for most of the world, it is highest on Facebook in Japan—but its more mature and therefore higher seniority userbase of decisionmakers can translate to higher-quality leads and better ROI.

And with 98% of Japanese Facebook users accessing via mobile, remember to make your ads mobile-friendly to reach more B2B buyers!

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Facebook—not LinkedIn—is the most effective B2B marketing platform in Japan, primarily due to its powerful targeting options and more mature audience, particularly C-suite decisionmakers. Therefore, to propel your B2B marketing success in Japan, leverage Facebook’s ad targeting options and optimize for mobile to reach more Japanese B2Bs.

Ready to maximize your digital marketing in Japan?

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