Sure, B2C companies can rock at social media. But, did you know that your B2B company also can soar on social platforms? Ready to learn from the pros?
5 Tips to Leveraging Social Media for Your B2B Company
Many who market B2B companies begin with good intentions of using social media. The truth is that it takes much more than just opening a Facebook account to see the fruits of your labor. In fact, it takes a bit of labor to really engage social media as the marketing superpower it is.
Let's assume that you already have accounts on at least a couple of the most common platforms, such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, G+, LinkedIn, and Twitter. How do you use them to generate leads and increase traffic to your website?
Tip 1: Build Original Content on Your Website
The first step is to create content. You can repurpose much of the content on your website in social media.
Many B2B company owners find content creation to be, at the very least, overwhelming. Where do you start?
Here are some basic ideas for content that you'll want to include on your website:
- regular blog posts
- white papers
- an "about us" page
- free online tools
- press releases (Create an online newsroom. For how to do this, click here.)
- curated content
If you're not up to the task of creating original content, consider hiring a freelancer or agency to do it for you.
Handpicked Related Content
The idea with creating content is that you want your audience to turn to you as its leading source of industry knowledge. If your last blog post was in 2012, no one will think of you as up to the minute. To help you keep track of your content, use an editorial calendar, such as this one (available for free by clicking below):
Now that you've created some original content, how do you use it in social media? Here's a rundown for three of the most popular platforms.
Tip 2: Post at Regular Intervals on Twitter
Again, regularity is key. You don't want sporadic Twitter posts to decrease your credibility. Sites like Hootsuite and Buffer allow you to schedule your social media posts in advance. You can also monitor which posts were the most popular so that you can clone those posts going forward.
What should you post on Twitter? Remember, Twitter is all about sharing information. Some ideas of what to tweet:
- industry articles
- blog post promotions
- company news that directly affects customers
- other useful content on your website
- press releases
Twitter is not your exclusive ad space. Although you want to promote your business, Twitter should mainly be used as a platform to share knowledge and provide useful information to others.
Regularly promote content other than your own. Retweet useful links, give shout outs to others, and promote those working hard in your industry. And send people to your website when you have something worthwhile to talk up.
Tip 3: Create a Community of Followers on Facebook
Facebook for business has evolved greatly in the past couple of years. Not everyone is thrilled with the changes. However, the core values (connecting people) of Facebook can still be utilized to build a sense of community among your followers.
Use Facebook to start discussions. Ask what people think about various industry topics, about current news items, or about what they think of a project you're working on.
Post pictures of your office dog, of your staff enjoying a meal together, or other images that humanize your company.
The idea is to make people feel involved in what you're doing. Make sure you always respond to comments.Don't: Use Facebook as an Online Business Card
Some companies feel obligated to have a Facebook page, but aren't really sure why. It's actually better not to have a page than to have one that's dull and never used.
(Click here to learn about the most common and misleading myths about using social media for B2B PR.)
Tip 4: Create Eye-Catching Images for Every Platform, Especially Pinterest and Instagram
The proof is in the numbers. Tweets, Facebook posts, and LinkedIn updates get more interaction when images are used. What types of images work well on social media?
Facebook: Personal and community-building photos and candid shots
Twitter: Images used in blog posts and other professional articles
Instagram: promotional images, candid office shots, short staff videos, images of your area (out on the job, remote office locations, etc.)
Pinterest: Blog post images, infographics
LinkedIn: Images used in original content, such as your blog posts
How do you create a great image?
Canva is our favorite tool! You can create free images in just a matter of minutes. Check out our tutorial:
Don't forget about videos! Platforms like Vine and Instagram make creating candid videos a snap!Don't: Use the Same Image Size for Every Platform
A Pinterest image is going to be cut off in the middle if you try to use it on Twitter. Instead, make sure you customize your images for each platform. Canva makes it easy to do this. Simply choose which type of platform you need to create your image for, and voila, you're set.
Tip 5: Start or Join a LinkedIn Group
LinkedIn groups are created for members of the same industry to share content, exchange ideas, and make contacts.
Repurpose your website content, such as blog posts, to establish yourself as an industry leader on LinkedIn.Don't: Forget About Creating a Killer LinkedIn Profile
A profile that leaves out details about who you are will not help to establish your credibility. Consider hiring someone or asking a colleague to write your summary. It can be difficult to write an objective synopsis about yourself.
Don't Leave Your Marketing to Chance
Perhaps the worst case scenario is leaving your marketing to chance. Even if you bomb on a few posts, it gives you a place to start from. You'll slowly begin to notice what works and what doesn't.
If you want faster results, without leaving it to chance, try our 60-day content program. Our proven method of marketing will allow you to see solid evidence that social media, done the right way, really works!