For B2B marketing, digital is the way of the future. Here's how you create a B2B social mediaplan and a B2B content strategyfor successful marketing, social selling, and customer support, among other things.
However, digital is the way of the future in B2B. Online sales meetings, conferences, and businessdecisions are becoming more common.
B2B content marketing, as the name implies, is the practice of utilizing content to broaden your company's audience, reinforce and create brand affinity, and eventually generate leads and sales by appealing to other companies.
All that distinguishes B2B content marketing from other forms of content marketing is that it is utilized solely by companies for businesses. This is not your typical consumer-facing material.
What is B2B Social Media Marketing?
B2B is an abbreviation for business-to-business. B2B social media marketing promotes items or services to business clients and prospects via social media platforms.
B2Cmarketers utilize social platforms to target consumers who are making personal purchasing decisions. To reach decision-makers, B2B marketers must think more strategically. They then cultivate connections that can result in significant purchasing deals.
Every social platform has a role in B2B marketing. However, the balance in a B2B social media strategy would most certainly change significantly from that in a consumer-focused approach.
Let's take a look at how B2B social media marketing may be utilized to achieve each of these objectives.
- Increasing brand awareness. First and foremost, you must identify yourself to the rest of the world. There are several voices in the B2B space. It's easy to get lost in the crowd. Businesses must define who they are, what differentiates them from rivals, and what they value as a firm. Social media is the ideal platform for making it happen since it allows you to promote bite-sized bits of content that emphasize all of the above.
- Educating the public. The B2B buyer's journey entails more than simply browsing a website or reviewing a price page. A large percentage of B2B purchasers conduct independent research to verify that the firms they support are reputable. Perhaps the most effective approach to establishing your reputation is to educate your audience. Any B2B social marketing planshould revolve around practical, instructive material, which can range from blog posts and e-books to firsthand accounts and how-to videos.
- Creating trust. With so much competition among B2B companies, everything you can do to create trust and demonstrate the value of your company is a bonus. Testimonials, good reviews, and honors (think: awards, customer milestones) are all excellent for sharing and maybe done so. There is, without a doubt, no better location to gather and disseminate social proof than, well, social media.
Let's get you into the "most successful" category by discussing how to create a B2B social media plan for your company.
Every B2B social media strategy, like a strong B2C strategy, should address the following two questions:
- What are the company's business goals?
- What role will B2B social media marketing play in achieving these goals?
B2B marketers' business objectives should most likely be longer-term in nature than those of B2C social media initiatives.
The following are the top three overall aims for B2B content marketers:
- Increasing brand awareness
- to establish credibility and trust
- to educate the audience
All three of the main objectives contribute to social media B2B lead creation. As a result, it comes as no surprise that the majority of effective B2B marketers likewise prioritize the use of content marketing to nurture subscribers, audiences, or leads (73 percent ).
Our blog post on goal-setting might assist you in establishing the appropriate goals and objectives for your B2B social media strategy.
Remember to incorporate internal objectives and goals in your plan. For example, a recent study published in the Journal of Business Logistics discovered that using social media may enhance product and competition awareness among supplier account managers.
Buyer personas may be created by examining the attributes and social profiles of company managers who have purchased your product. These are client group representations that can assist you to understand your target audiences.
To begin, open a spreadsheet. Fill it with the names, contact information, and, if possible, profile URLs of persons who have purchased your products or services on behalf of their companies.
Second, once you're satisfied with the size of the list, provide information such as:
- Business size and scope
Understanding who your social activity reaches should result in more clicks and engagements as you tailor messaging and campaigns to them.
Each social media site you use is a brand embassy, and it should fully represent your home nation (i.e. website). Include your company's logo and make sure all of the visuals and proportions are right for each platform.
Use keywords to have your social media profile noticed through search, just as you would with your main website. The majority of social media networks are crawled by search engines. Also, always provide a link back to your website so that people may learn more about you.
As you are aware, there are several content categories, each with its own set of advantages. Here is a complete list:
- Video. Video is the most adaptable content format. People will interact with video at any point of the buyer's journey if it is used and deployed.
- Blogs. Many advertisers rely on it. Blogs, which have been tried and proven, can be utilized for pre-awareness, awareness, education, and contemplation. Blogs aren't always lead producers; nevertheless, they are considerably more successful in increasing brand recognition, website traffic, and visitor trust.
- eBooks. eBooks typically address/tackle a certain issue in-depth, giving the degree of information required to educate a prospect and encourage them to engage with a business. You may, of course, negate your eBooks (give them for free) if you believe the material you're giving is available elsewhere for free. There's no purpose in limiting access to material that's freely available online. You're not going to create any leads. eBooks are ideal for informing customers and displaying expertise. Nonetheless, they may be utilized to increase brand recognition. Remember that because you're asking individuals to give up their information (name, email, workplace, etc.) in return for your eBook, you need to make it a valuable and instructive offer. It's all about real, one-of-a-kind content.
- Case studies. In today's digital era, trust may be the most crucial factor. Because it is so easy for businesses to mislead or defraud people online, everyone is on high alert. Case studies will assist you in lowering your defenses. They showcase your accomplishments, address consumer questions, increase company-wide trust, and show prospects how you have assisted others. Your prospects may make an informed, confident decision to collaborate with you if they study case studies (and reviews). As a result, make sure to record your efforts for your clients. Inquire if they would be willing to participate in a case study with you and obtain estimates (this can really ramp up the believability and therefore the trust factor). Display your case studies on your website. Prospects who are ready to buy or talk with someone may observe how your solutions operate in practice. Case studies are excellent for nurturing individuals in the customer journey's contemplation and assessment stages. Most people who read your case studies are attempting to figure out how you assisted other firms and have done their homework.
- Product demonstrations and price documentation. You must include product demonstration videos and price papers on your website for individuals who want to acquire your items or services. Product demos are simple to create – simply walk interested individuals through what you have to offer – but price papers are a little more difficult. We understand. You don't want to give your price away. You don't want to scare away potential customers or give your competitors a chance to undercut you. But here's the thing: customers need to know how much your products, services, and/or solutions cost - at the very least, an estimate. If you don't have price information on your website, your prospects will go elsewhere to get it. And, believe us when we say, there are lots of other businesses like yours. So consider what parts of your price you can discuss/quantify in order to offer customers a sense of how much items cost. Make the information available on your website — even if it is free. It will aid in the development of trust and the acquisition of the new company.
- Market research is important. In an age where everyone is repeating the same thing over and over, market research studies are what allow you to differentiate yourself from your rivals. Market research studies are based on original data, which is data that is not available elsewhere. It entails recognizing and analyzing the market's demands and status, and it might give interesting insights. Market research, like movies, has a wide range of applications. It may be used to raise brand recognition and PR (by developing headlines based on data), as well as to educate prospects, generate leads, and improve SEO.
Determine which social media channels best suit your brand identity and create the greatest match with your specific audience. Don't overextend yourself by attempting to be everywhere at once. Be where you need to be depending on your audience's location and the sort of content that works for you.
- LinkedIn. LinkedIn, which was previously thought to be only a great business networking site, should now be a key component of your B2B lead generating and content marketing efforts. It is the only social site that caters to business professionals. LinkedIn has 2 million authors publishing new material, as well as peer postings in the feed, long-form content, LinkedIn Groups, and 7 million brand-managed corporate sites. While LinkedIn is an excellent complement to a solid organic marketing plan, there is more you can do than simply develop a LinkedIn network and create amazing content. A paid LinkedIn advertising and retargeting plan can assist in increasing buyer interest and closing deals more quickly.
- Instagram. Instagram, which is often ignored by B2B marketers, provides these businesses with a good chance to promote their products and services creatively without spending a lot of money. Instagram for Business encourages business-to-business connections through comments and also allows users to upload images, text, and videos directly on the site.
- Facebook. Facebook isn't simply about keeping in touch with family and friends. It may also be utilized to assist businesses in communicating with prospects and fostering community. Depending on the business model, the firm can create Facebook accounts, post testimonials, use Facebook Ads, create Facebook Pages for various brands, or create Facebook Groups for specific product objectives. It is also an excellent venue for repurposing the content marketing stories that your team spent so much effort creating for other platforms.
- Twitter. This social media tool, known for its short-message style and fast-shifting feeds, may assist businesses in providing quick, snackable morsels of information. Twitter may be used by B2B firms to announce product upgrades, provide information and news, connect to website content, or engage in discussion with their target audience. Twitter may also be used to enhance the customer service experience.
- YouTube. YouTube is the world's most popular video hosting site. YouTube content marketing may leverage the sight, sound, and emotion of video to promote the brand by increasing recognition, extending current audiences, and improving search rankings.
- Pinterest. Pinterest can be an excellent choice for a firm that can best showcase its items through visual methods. Business users may customize their business interests on their digital boards by "pinning" pictures, videos, and links.
Almost all (94 %) of the most effective B2B content marketers track the performance of their content. When compared to just 60% of the least successful.
This is understandable. How can you tell how well your social material is performing if you don't track it with specific metrics and KPIs?
What measurements and statistics should you keep an eye on? It is determined by your company objectives. You may concentrate on response time, impressions, engagement rate, conversions, sales, and other metrics. The essential thing is to create benchmarks and goals that are attainable.
Customer satisfaction scores, qualitative evaluations, and your Net Promoter Score are all important indicators to consider. Consider lowering your recruitment and customer service expenditures as well. All of this adds up to a higher return on investment.
Be realistic about which initiatives will have tangible figures and which will have a more difficult to define benefit. Remember that just because you have the ability to measure something does not automatically imply that you should. And just because you can't readily measure something doesn't mean it's not valuable.