Social media advertising is a heavy hitter in the consumer marketing world - but why haven't social media ads for B2B taken off at the same rate? One of the big reasons is that a lot of people think that a B2B product or service doesn't belong on Facebook or Twitter, so they stick to the traditional tactics that have worked in the past.
But the thing is, B2B decision makers and influencers are still people who use social media. It may not be as easy to find them or to grab their attention when they're not in "work" mode, but that doesn't mean it's impossible. B2B social media marketing is a nut that we've been cracking for a while now, and we're here to help you get started.
LinkedIn is the most obvious social platform for B2B marketing; it's built for the working world. While the targeting may be better suited for B2B, keep in mind that LinkedIn knows this and will charge a lot more per click than other social media platforms. When trying to find your target market on LinkedIn, go through these exercises:
- List the types of companies you want to sell to
(What industry are they in? Are they large or small businesses?)
- List the different job titles of decision makers and influencers that you've sold to successfully in the past
- Find Groups on LinkedIn that your target market would be a part of
(eg. I'm selling a marketing automation software, so let's find a lot of marketing & technology groups)
The answers you'll get out of these exercises will be the linchpin of your Sponsored Content targeting on LinkedIn.
Twitter's probably the next social platform you'd want to use to try social media ads for B2B marketing; it's a place to discuss news and share articles. A lot of business chatter happens on Twitter. The way that you can find your target market on Twitter is to start by asking yourself these questions:
- What websites, news sources, or experts would our target market go to for industry updates?
- What products/services that are complimentary to ours would our target market have?
- In our industry, what companies or people have a large social media following?
Take the answers you've jotted down and start finding these companies, organizations, and people on Twitter. Keep their handles handy, because you'll use them for targeting your Twitter ads.
Facebook's probably one of the last places you'd think of for B2B marketing. Although finding your target market may be trickier on Facebook, it's the platform where you can get the cheapest clicks. To combat the difficulty in targeting, focus your effort on making ads that will really speak to your target market. This way, only people in your target market will click the ad (and you're not spending money on getting the wrong people to click). Find the answers to these questions:
- What industry terms would really get our target market's attention?
- What kind of visuals are really specific to our industry?
(eg. a specific type of tool, a CAD drawing, etc.)
At this point, you'll have done a LOT of good marketing thinking. These questions and exercises will be an important start to making social media ads for B2B that really break through.
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