In my years of working with small to medium sized businesses and then later working with large, global B2B Technology companies, I've learned a thing or two about how to build an effective B2B Social Media Strategy. Below is a template or foundation you can use as you develop your own B2B Social Media strategy. Every business is different, therefore so should be your Social Media Strategy.
- What are your goals? Believe it or not, setting specific goals is something thats missed MOST of the time. 5000 more likes? Higher Engagement? 10,000 website views per month? Better quality leads? Think of several goals and taper all or most of the actions of your B2B Social Media Strategy around them. DANGER: A lot of B2B companies, blindly hire college grads with no real business experience to head their Social Media. Dont do that.
- Focus on the MVC's (Most Valuable Channels). Notice I didnt say DONT be in every channel. Im a firm believer that you need to at least have a presence across all the most popular social channels (Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, etc). You never know for sure where your potential customer will see you first to hopefully start that relationship with you. We marketers HAVE to think outside of the box. Maybe being on that random channel you initially thought would be ridiculous for your company to be on would actually generate leads? That being said, you SHOULD be doing things to measure what channels are working the BEST and focus more of your marketing efforts on that. We currently use Hubspot to measure and have had to refocus some of our time and marketing dollars after realizing that theres more value outside of the social channels we were in.
- Focus on teaching Social Selling to your Sales Reps: What does that have to do with your B2B Social Media Strategy? Everything. They are the ones day in a day out working with the customers youve attracted through your social media efforts. They are actually connecting and communicating with the DECISION MAKERS. The Twitter handle of that huge company youve been targeting and communicating with is probably another marketer just like yourself (not the one that actually would BUY your product or service). You dont have to become a sales trainer, but I highly recommend you start reading the Social Selling University Blog. Read some of my other blog posts like this one on B2B Selling.
- Understand the persona or personas of your potential client. This is a whole other series of blog posts that I will release shortly. If you dont know what a persona is.....do this.
- Content Marketing focus: Now that you trained your reps, you know the psychology of your target, you are sure about the appropriate MVC's....ready...set.....now lets create content. Its been proven that B2B companies that blog, receive almost 50% more leads than others that don't blog. This is where youll have to sell other people inside your organization to help you create content. I'm currently doing that inside my company as well as reaching out to 3rd parties to help in the process. One company I highly recommend for that is Zerys.com.
There are potentially many other steps that can be included in building a strong B2B Social Media Strategy. The ones mentioned just now are ones that I have personally seen to work across several types and size B2B organizations.
Any thoughts or comments on what I just wrote? Thanks!