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What B2B Marketers Need to Know About Social Media Marketing

You can learn a lot about what people want to know through Google's auto-complete function. Being in the business of wanting to create impactful and useful content, I turned to good ole' Google to understand what exactly B2B brand marketeres are searching for so I could help to answer the right question. Call it intuition, common sense, or BS, but I had a feeling that questions around how B2B brands can leverage social media would be among the top searches. So, this blog will aim to answer B2B marketers' questions about social.

What b2b marketers need to know about search

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First, all brands need to realize that social is an inherent part of any marketing initiative. It no longer sits in a silo or stands as an afterthought campaign extension. And, if you still need to be sold on social, here are a few data points that should do the trick.

  • Aberdeen Group polled 500 companies and found that B2B brands that aggressively leverage social media generate more leads, close more deals and retain customers longer
  • 59% of B2B buyers engaged with peers online to address their questions
  • 48% of B2B buyers followed online industry conversations on topics to address business challenges

With that said, the following key considerations can be applied to all B2B marketing efforts, but tie more specifically to social.

Root It In Insights

Root what in insights you ask? Everything, your idea, your channel strategy, your content strategy, it all needs to ladder back up to what your target wants to hear from you and how that impacts your business objective. Money and bandwidth are often a concern, but investing in insights can benefit your business well beyond social media. By developing content that resonates, you are connecting with and generating qualified leads. Learning how to connect with your audience should never be short changed, but that's just my two cents.

Make It Sexy

As marketers, we often hear B2B brands express that they don't know how to use social media because their subject matter is boring. Our response, you're selling yourself short.  You don't need to dress up your software in a French maid outfit to make your content sexy, although that probably would get quite a few likes. We're talking about creating information that is consumable, shareable, and helpful. Often times, buyers are looking to you to solve a business challenge, so become a content resource and a thought leader in your space. Here are a few tips on making it sexy:

  • Find a relatable angle
  • Use humor
  • Be genuinely helpful ' this ties back to insights, teach people what they want to learn
  • Share your story visually
  • Use video
  • Use LinkedIn ' it's only 277% more effective at generating leads than any other social network

Take Notes From B2C Brands

As the historical divisions between the enterprise and personal spheres disappear, B2B marketers can learn a lot by monitoring the tactics of counterparts in the consumer sector, who take a more individualized approach to how they communicate with their audience. Successful B2B brands are those that understand that relationships are ultimately between people, not companies, and apply that principle to engaging their audience.

  • Optimize your site. B2C sites are built with the customer in mind. They address how their product or service will solve your problem and then lead you to the product that offers the solution.
  • Branding matters. B2C brands build awareness and foster relationships, which leads to brand affinity and sales. Not everything should be about lead generation at the onset.
  • Get emotional. B2C brands understand people buy because of the emotional benefit. Many B2B marketers focus too much on the features of their product or service and not enough about the emotional benefits.

B2B brands should look at social media as an opportunity to continually earn customers' trust by delivering useful, highly valuable content continually and creating a solid platform of communication. Platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Google+ are the perfect place to facilitate a two-way conversation with prospects and ensure your brand resonates with the right voice.

Learn more about our social media marketing service.

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