5 killer social media tips for B2B businesses
In the ocean of potential customers, social media is a charter fishing trip. - Adam Fridman
Quite a precise statement, especially at a time when so many popular social communities like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn etc. have come up. You can go to any of these platforms and land a big catch.
But things are tad more difficult or let’s say challenging for B2B businesses. Here one company is trying to get hold of another. So things ought to be more tactful and carefully premeditated.
Unfortunately, while the awareness of social media marketing is growing, most of the tips given are focused on B2C communication. This also explains why many companies in spite of implementing most of the social media tip given everywhere, fail to generate any ROI.
In business-to-business (B2B) scenarios, although the social media platforms are same, the tools and tactics are a bit different. For instance, - new-age customer relationship management applications are required that enable a business to monitor its social media channels. Businesses (anytime anywhere) can get the latest insight into what their leads/customers are sharing or talking about socially. Plus, they can post their own updates through the CRM too. In short, the CRM application works as business growth software.
However, simply having the technology is half the battle won. You need to have clearly outlined B2B specific social media strategies to gain benefit.
Read further as we provide you five tips for creating a strong and effective social media marketing campaign specifically for business to business.
1. Capitalize the power of Twitter
Twitter is the most powerful social media tool for B2B communications. Once you know your exact target, you can find, follow, and engage the person in ways that other social media channels do not allow you to do.
For example – Facebook, in which there's no reason why you need to see photos of the vacation that the CEO of some XYZ company went for.
So basically, Twitter lets you do your business well. However, just a word of caution –
Once you find and follow your target(s), observe them for a while. Study their Twitter profile thoroughly to understand the kind of tweets they post. Even after they follow you - Don't tweet to them or send them a direct message right away. First develop a precise idea of what they usually share and re-tweet. Then start sharing similar things on your profile.
Use the #B2B hashtag on Twitter. This is a popular hashtag used by companies to connect with other B2B companies that are giving Twitter a try.
2. Be Human
You're chasing a business deal or a lead but that shouldn’t make your communication robotic. Be interesting, funny, and engaging on every social media channel. This is extremely essential for a healthy relationship with your clients. Remember businesses are made up of individuals and connecting with those individuals over social media should be your motive. To successfully achieve this, you need to develop a personally engaging approach.
So share stories or news about your employees as well as your product. Present a personal voice and image to your targeted customers. Put company faces out to humanize you and your brand.
In short, make your marketing person to person. As Matthew Chapdelaine, co-founder of CommercialConnected.com states - "Every transaction still relies on the personal touch to get the deal to the finish line."
3. Prepare a Mixed Approach
Share industry news articles. Maintain 2:1 ratio where you share third-party content two times followed up with your own content. Make a list of the thought leaders in your industry. Share most of their content that’s relevant to your business. Considering that all social platforms show who has shared whose post – this is a great way to get on the radar of your industry thought leaders. (Definitely much better than a direct sales pitch)
Also look for other ways to engage with the leaders socially.
Let’s say Twitter chats where you get the chance to participate in a conversation with a large number of people. The conversation usually centers on a topic of current interest.
Twitter chats are frequently held where people follow a specific hashtag at a specific time. The ones who want to take part in the conversation comment with the topic-related hashtag. Anyone following the hashtag can see that Tweet.
Why do we recommend this for B2B?
Business Leaders and Top-Notch brands promote thousands of hashtags everyday. Majority of the tweetchats are established around these hashtags only. You just need to find the one that’s relevant to your business/target audience and take part in there.
Over time, you can start your own Twitter Chats. Sharing good mix of information through these chats can be a great strategy to increase your followers.
4. Use Google Alerts
53% B2B companies actively use Google Alerts to monitor industry news. Follow the same tactic. Keep yourself updated with what's happening with other businesses. Get links to popular contents that you can later share with your followers.
5. Start commenting in LinkedIn Groups
LinkedIn provides 80 percent of all B2B social media leads.
LinkedIn Groups are pre-made marketing communities, which allows companies to build up their name socially. If you have a solid resource of information to share in a group, start posting them. It’s one of the best options to drive people to your profile, and eventually, to your website.
Just a word of caution - Don’t spam the group with tons of sales messages. Share useful information that you’re confident will benefit the people in your group.
Once you establish an affirmative reputation as an expert commenter, you can start your own LinkedIn Group too. The group can be strictly focused on a particular subject or have a number of relatable topics bundled together.
Experts suggest focusing on a narrow topic at first. Over time, you can dig deeper into the topic to educate your audience and gain their trust. Remember while you might find uncountable number of companies forming their own LinkedIn groups, only few of them get heard. This is because every company is not able to become an authoritative voice on LinkedIn. To make your company gain a strong foothold in LinkedIn, share great knowledge insights that allure the best businesses to your group.
Patricia is a full time CRM consultant at ConvergeHub and part-time blogger. She has earned herself quite a fame as a specialist and market expert in CRM software. In the last five year she has worked with various companies as CRM consultant to help them move their businesses to cloud. Her expertise lies in offering cloud CRM consultation, CRM customization and integration solutions to small enterprises. For last one she is engaged in building ConvergeHub, cloud-based CRM solution for SMBs, as a consultant.Follow her at Twitter: @convergehub