4 Things You Might Not Know About Social Media's Role In B2B Marketing


March 12, 2021

Kate Dodd

Kate Dodd EVP, Marketing

This isn’t another article touting why your company should be on social media. We’re probably a decade past that stage. So now the question turns to how companies can succeed when selling to other businesses directly online, even in the tiniest niche market. The B2B marketing world might seem trickier than B2C, but if you consider the below tidbits, you might just find that you’ll be able to set up your company’s social channels for success.

Social media can grow your leads base

Thinking you have all the clients you need, or giving up altogether on finding new customers will hurt you in the long run. You just haven’t found new prospects yet. But guess what? They’re online. An Episerver report polled 600 B2B decision-makers and found that social media presence, digital experience and self-service options rank as their highest digital differentiators. With the trend of “showrooming” so prominent in the B2C world, it’s no surprise that it’s now happening among B2B organizations as well.

Known as the practice of checking out a company’s products in-store, then purchasing online later, the same comparison often can’t entirely be made in B2B. You might have a headquarters, but not a storefront. So, your prospects will check out your social channels instead, wondering if you’re a legitimate organization, and whether it is worth it to create a business relationship. If you haven’t updated your Twitter account since 2017 (something I came across just last week!), you might want to give yourself a social media refresh and re-introduce yourself to the market. A lot can change quickly, and opportunities shouldn’t be left behind.

Your content doesn’t have to be boring

Do you have a social media marketing specialist? Or does someone with a marketing role stick to tweeting twice a day, making a LinkedIn post, and updating the company Facebook page? This is all very formulaic, probably well-planned, and lacks personality. I’m not against having a content calendar, but you might find that spontaneity can spice up your content. You never know when a particular item in the news might find some relevance to your industry, and that’s a great time to share and comment.

When Kim Kardashian married Kanye West, there was speculation that she underwent toe surgery in order to fit into her wedding shoes. Podiatrists had a field day with the news! It allowed them to share their expertise and comment on trends in the industry. See where I’m going with this? It’s a lot more engaging than continuously posting about your upcoming webinar series (although that has a place in the marketing mix, too), and could bring in some new followers as well.

Find an industry voice

This goes hand in hand with my above point. You’re trying to advertise your products/services to others in the industry. Instead of maintaining a “sell, sell, sell” mentality, let others do the talking for your brand. How are employees at your company using these products? What does a normal day look like? Perhaps you’ve been quite successful with a recent launch and want to share the results. Case studies or day-in-the-life snapshots can tell a variety of stories that show how your offerings have benefitted other companies. I’m sure you think your products are great, but for your following to hear it from others – that can make a real impact.

You don’t have to be a comedian

Some brands choose to comment on occurrences that are beyond the scope of their industry. For example, how many Tiger King references were brands pumping out in March? Remember why your followers are following you, and maintain a level of professionalism with your posts. Blogs, podcasts, how-to videos all make for great content, and allow for engagement and follow-up opportunities. You might find yourself in a niche industry, but find what makes your company unique and showcase those aspects. Would you follow your company’s accounts and feel engaged, or would you be hitting the “Unfollow” button after a week? Take this into consideration when shaping future social campaigns.

B2B organizations can face tricky circumstances when marketing their products or services, because it’s not as simple as selling facemasks during a global pandemic. Finding an audience or demand for products can be time-consuming if you don’t know where to begin, or don’t expect your social media marketing to serve an important role in your company’s future. A business’ success will lie in its ability to engage current and potential clients over an extended period of time, and continuing to grow its social outreach. Improving upon these efforts will bring a brighter future to your company.

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