Social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn – are gaining thousands upon thousands of new users every day. With Facebook and Instagram both having billions of users, it’s a great way to promote products to people from all over the world. Not only are they a great way for B2C companies to sell their product, B2B companies can benefit from them as well. In reality, it’s very important for B2B to utilize them unless they want to lose sales by continuing to rely on old methods like cold calling.
Remember, social media done right builds your brand, reputation, and clientele.
So how should B2B companies go about using social media?
1 – Define your objectives: The first step in any business model and creating social media profiles is defining measurable goals. Yes, keeping track of followers and reach is an easy metric to measure; however, brand awareness and engagement is more important in B2B. With a smaller target market compared to B2C, lead generation reigns supreme compared to sales.
2 – Your products are probably boring, don’t let your posts be: Let’s be real. Products designed for manufacturing companies aren’t the most exciting to read about or good at generating buzz. Because of this, it’s important to write about your product and connecting it to a topic your followers will be interested in. For example, if you sell a specified car part, connect that to the latest luxury car models in a blog post. Not only will you generate more buzz, your reach will increase to car enthusiasts, car manufacturers, engineers, etc.
3 – Focus on brand awareness: With B2B, your ability to generate leads and close deals through social media is going to be a challenge. It’s definitely something to aim for, but what should be your first focus is engagement and presence. In time, your efforts will result in quality leads.
4 – Hire a social media expert, not an expert on your product: Just because you know your product like the back of your hand, doesn’t mean you know what tweets or LinkedIn posts will result in clicks. Going back to point 2, when dealing with uninteresting topics, hiring someone who knows how to generate buzz is important.
5 – Platforms to utilize: The best social media platforms to use for B2B are LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. With 9/10 B2B companies utilizing LinkedIn, “the world’s largest professional network on the internet”, it’s important to have an active presence. Made for connecting to others in the business world, it has the best traffic and audience to gain leads.
6 – Connect with others: Now that you’ve established measurable goals, hired an expert, and created profiles on the best platforms, it’s time to connect with others. Connect with people who follow or create content for similar industries to build relationships and generate relevant contacts.
7 – Promote your content: In order to have a successful marketing campaign, you need to promote your content. People want to see interesting blog posts you’ve written, studies you’ve conducted, and compelling advertisements you’ve created.
8 – Feature a real person: Another method to help promote your B2B product on social media is to feature a real person on the different platforms. Often time B2B companies seem quite distant from customers or followers. By talking in first person, including real names, and initiating engagement, it helps humanize the brand.