10 Social Lessons for B2B Companies
The social media landscape is ever-changing, and so is the way people are making buying decisions.
Social media is a great tool to attract prospects and customers with your content and guide them through the buyer’s journey. Here are ten social lessons for forward-thinking B2B companies.
1. Get Blogging
If you don’t have a corporate blog, now is a good time to start one. Blogging is a great platform to showcase thought-leadership content and exciting events, highlight customer success stories, and more. Your customers can be your most valuable assets. Sharing success stories is a great way to get potential customers to take the next step in learning more about your offerings.
Having a call to action (CTA) in each blog post is also critical to taking each visitor through the buyer’s journey. If you have difficulty finding social media content, it may be easier to publish a blog post in lieu of creating a page on your website (depending on your internal structure and resources).
— Simply Measured (@simplymeasured) June 23, 2016
Leverage your blog posts on your social channels to drive awareness and traffic to your blog. When highlighting a customer success blog post, tag that customer in the social media post to let them know you are on social media, and hopefully they will retweet you. This is a great way to build connections with your customers on social media.
2. Know What Your Competitors Are Doing
Following and researching your competitors on social media presents unique opportunities. You can discover the type of content your competitors are posting and the engagement that various content types receive. This can help cultivate ideas for what your audience may be interested in seeing on your social channels.
Another opportunity is seeing the type of accounts and people they are following. Are they following 100 or 10,000 accounts? You could end up finding a new influencer or source of third-party content. Doing your research pays off.
3. Set Goals and KPIs
Whom do you want to reach, and for what purpose? Set your goals and KPIs before starting to share content on your social media channels.
2016 Social Marketing Planning Guide
If you don’t know why you are sharing content or what you are asking your audience to do, it might be beneficial to take a step back and regroup on your strategy.
4. Use the Platform Your Audience Is on
Every company and audience is unique. Being present on Facebook, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter may not be the best strategy for every company.
5 Keys to Cross-Channel Social Analysis
Go where your audience is now, and where they are interacting. If you notice developers are active on Twitter, as opposed to Facebook, adapt your strategy and focus on Twitter. It’s okay to leave one platform to focus on another. You want to make sure you’re using your time to make the greatest impact for your company.
5. Do Your Hashtag Due Diligence
Have you researched the appropriate hashtags for your field? If you don’t know which hashtags are being used, you could miss the opportunity to expand your audience. My recommendation is to try hashtags and see how they perform. For example, try #ArtificialIntelligence in one post and #AI in another and see which content sees more engagement and reach.
One thing to keep in mind: you should triple-check the types of content being shared around hashtags using acronyms. What may be used internally at your company could mean something completely different on social media. All it takes is a simple search in Twitter. That one small search could save you a lot of embarrassment.
6. Get Creative
Social media platforms are constantly changing and adding new features. Take a chance and try something new. Have you seen an account utilize a Twitter Poll to engage their audience?
Happening now: #CopaAmerica final match. Who are you rooting for?
— Twitter Sports (@TwitterSports) June 26, 2016
Why don’t you try one? You’ll never know if your audience will enjoy something new unless you try it.
7. Keep Your Ear to the Ground
Being responsible for a social media community is no easy task. You are responsible for feeding your audience likable and useful content, engaging with your audience, and listening for feedback (both good and bad).
See what people are saying about your brand and highlight those stories; who knows, it could turn into a guest blog post. Start following your customers to see if they are mentioning you in their posts, and use that opportunity to share their content on your channels. After you start your listening process, alter your content to fit in buckets people seem to be interested in learning more about.
8. Stand Out with Rich Media
Share interesting content, such as video testimonials or how-to information, with your users.
Doing this will help you stand out against your competitors as people scroll through their social media feeds. Third-party content is another tactic you can use to show your audience you are tuned-in with the latest happenings in your field.
9. Influencer Engagement
Influencers are a relatively new space for many companies. Developing a program where you build relationships with influencers is incredibly valuable.
— LinkedIn Marketing (@LinkedInMktg) May 23, 2016
Engagement with influencers can build credibility for your brand and increase the size of your social audience.
10. Employee Advocacy
Employees are a great resource to help share your content. Utilizing an employee advocacy platform gives your employees the opportunity to self-select the content they are interested in and build their own social networks and credibility in their field. I highly recommend investing the time and resources to build out your own employee advocacy framework, because it does pay off.
I cannot stress this enough: make your social accounts human and friendly. In the technology world, there is a lot of jargon. My challenge to you is to use language that makes it easy for people to understand your message. Something I’ve noticed during my career is that people tend to engage more with the real stories. I understand that being in the B2B space makes it difficult to show real images, so when the opportunity does arise, take full advantage of it. For example, at company events, highlight your teams and products in action.
If you follow these lessons, you should see an improvement within your brand channels.
Having over four years of experience in social media, Morgan is currently a Digital Marketing Specialist in the technology industry. Apart from social media, her interests include analytics, creative design, and sports. You can follow Morgan on Twitter @MorganPesut.