When it comes to social media, B2B companies get a bad rap, with many people thinking they are just impersonal, faceless entities. These companies are constantly compared to B2C companies, whose products might be “sexier” or more likely to make a splash on Yahoo’s homepage — or could be considered just more fun to market.
Well, the time to be boring is over!
You could manufacture the most humdrum widget imaginable – but if you’re passionate about it, and you let some of that excitement show through on social platforms, then you create that coveted “buzz.”
Before writing this blog, I did some research. Curiously, B2B companies actually outnumber B2Cs on social media. And it looks like the opportunity to impress is readily available. Check it out:
1. 81% of B2B companies have social media accounts, compared to 67% of B2Cs
2. 75% of B2B brands use Twitter, while only 49% of B2Cs do
3. 37% of B2B buyers say they ask a question on social media sites when looking for advice
4. 9 out of 10 buyers say when they are ready to buy, they’ll come looking for you
5. 60% of C-Suite execs conduct more than six online searches EVERY DAY
(you can add these stats to the list you’ll find here: Content Marketing: How to Convince Your Boss It’s Worthwhile)
So the question remains: What are you doing to make your B2B social marketing strategy rock? The answer lies in the heart of content marketing. If you’re not sure your plan is up to snuff — or don’t know if you even have a plan – here’s some step-by-step advice:
1. Research where your customers are getting information, how much they use social media, as well as what people in your industry are socially “talking about.” Find trending keywords or start an online community (like a LinkedIn group). You may find opportunity to establish yourself as a thought leader.
2. Create goals. How much do you want web traffic increase? Do you want to raise brand awareness? Increase lead gen?
3. Is your website user-friendly? I can’t tell you how many business sites I visit which are cluttered and hard to navigate. Your site should be personal and eye-catching, with established landing pages and calls to action to generate leads. And I beg of you – make your content easy to find!
4. Start blogging! And this doesn’t have to lie on the shoulders of just one person. Have several people take turns or give your customers a chance to contribute. This is a great way to start industry-specific conversations, not to mention some great material to share with your social followers and fans.
5. Make a B2B social marketing content plan. From the research you’ve done previously, develop content (like blogs or videos) that are based on trends you’ve noticed…then promote it on your social media accounts!
6. Develop valuable calls to action. For example, create a series of white papers or e-books and share them on your website, newsletter and social channels.
Oh – and don’t forget to be personable. Comment on others’ blogs or tweets, retweet or share others’ posts. Make a joke or share something inspiring.
Break the mold, and let that exciting B2B persona shine!