Social media is a “given” these days for B2C companies. By using social media to gain followers, promote interaction, and perpetuate a brand to individual consumers, these companies capitalize on the medium’s grassroots power. But what about B2B companies? Can they harness the power of social media to generate real growth and return, too?
This question is complex, because there is a fundamental difference between the ways in which we as marketers and businesses communicate with individuals, and the ways in which we communicate with other companies.
The answer, however, is not so complex. The reality is that all businesses can use social media to their advantage, albeit in different ways to suit their unique and industry-specific purposes. Let’s look at a few suggestions for B2B companies who want to break into social media the right way:
Start with LinkedIn
With its self-stated mission to “connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful,” LinkedIn is the first place where B2Bs need to establish a presence. Not only should you have a company profile, but you should also ensure that you and each of your staff members have complete and appealing profiles.
Accordingly, make it a point to join groups on LinkedIn and start discussions with others in your industry and the industry(ies) to which you sell. When you (and your business!) become part of the professional conversation, you can begin to use social media to your advantage. If you want tips on how to get your business started on LinkedIn, check out this great article.
Set your business apart by getting personal
It’s commonly accepted that B2C companies have a marketing advantage over B2B companies because the former’s tactics depend more on the emotions of individuals while the latter’s depend on the non-emotional, calculated needs of other companies.
While this may be true, it is also true that by integrating a little humanity into your social media strategy, you can place yourself a cut above other B2Bs. On Facebook, direct your employees to stay active on the company page and to follow social media etiquette on their own profiles. Especially for small B2B companies, encouraging employee social media networking and best practices helps put a friendly face on a company that usually only gets to appeal to the basely rational needs of other businesses.
Create and Share Content
If you operate in a technical B2B industry like steelworks or telecom, you might be limited in the way of sharing based on personal connection. That’s fine. Make up for it by writing on-point posts for your own company blog and industry blogs that you can then share from social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. The goal is to get other companies and individuals in your line of work to share the content you produce, too. For many companies, this is the best way to get their name out in the marketplace via social media.
Like most marketing tools in business, social media is not “one size fits all.” You really have to strategically consider what tactics will work for your company and which ones will not. Most, however, can benefit from a LinkedIn presence, a personal touch, and frequent quality content creation.
The Primm Company can orchestrate all three of these elements and an overarching marketing strategy for your company. Call us today at 757-623-6234.