SOCIAL MEDIA

Social Media
Yes, social media has arrived on the B2B scene.

Do we recommend earmarking 50% of your budget to post nonsensical videos to YouTube, while Tweeting about the latest office politics? Only if you’ve obtained a minimum of 750,000 Facebook friends...
 
But truthfully, social media does have its merits in business-to-business marketing. Just like when the internet itself was a rising star, smart marketers saw the potential and took advantage of this growing phenomenon.

The key is to do it cost-effectively, traceably and result-orientedly (OK, the grammar police will get us for this last one, but you get the point).

WHY SOCIAL MEDIA FOR B2B MARKETING

The goal for all your social media activities should be to maximize exposure for the company, educate and involve relevant communities and continue to establish thought leadership in your tinarget dustries. Consumable content designed to provide quick, focused updates on key industry trends is an effective way to build value on your social channels.

While not everyone uses Facebook during the workday or browses YouTube at night for work-related content, these outlets are a normal part of everyday life now. You need to be where the people are. And as the percentage of millennials in the workforce grows, social proof will be important for even B2B companies.

An important tweet from a company might not be sought out, but it would also not be ignored. The best way to ensure the company message is broadcast to all appropriate people and channels is to use all available avenues and outlets, especially those that are so cost-effective. Like news releases, posting on social media sites provides a lot of exposure with minimal effort.

CHOOSE THE PROPER SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS

First, you need to determine which social media platforms are best suited for your business, so whereas Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Facebook, Pinterest and SlideShare may have validity to varying degrees, be a bit more prudent when evaluating other B2C applications, like FourSquare or Yelp.

Tied intimately to our content marketing program, our social media activities follow a set, strategic calendar determined by other marcom campaigns. Trending hashtags, relevant deep content links and engaging photos all contribute to making posts shareable, yet must still support your communication goals and stay in line with your integrated marcom strategy.

Each site is an extension of your brand, and should visually support your own website and other marketing collateral. While certain profile elements can be updated based on events, product launches and company milestones, the overall design needs to remain true to your brand, since the company image is broadcast across all channels.

REACH THE AUDIENCE THAT MATTERS

Since people use different sources to obtain their news and information, those who do not see the latest issue of a magazine or online publication with your company’s ad or long-form content can still see the same message broadcast on YouTube in a product video, a technical presentation on SlideShare or be reminded about a tradeshow on Facebook.
With as little as 6 hrs/wk invested in social media, b2b marketers reported an 81% increase in traffic.
Social media provides a wide range of digital channels that complement traditional branding methods.