The Role of Social Media in B2B Marketing
Published June 29, 2022 2:57 pm by
It’s no secret that today’s top B2B brands are utilizing social media marketing to grow their business, build relationships and ultimately increase leads.
After all, B2B marketing looks a lot different today than it did 10 years ago. Now sales meetings, conferences and business decisions can happen online, and social media can help build connections that close the deal. But, before all that happens—brands need to understand the environment and lay the groundwork.
The B2B buyer is social
While B2B brands may not always offer the same pretty or playful social media climate as consumer brands, they can certainly achieve the same brand loyalty and audience engagement when marketed correctly. Not to mention, B2B brands have the same opportunity to move the needle and influence buyer decisions across social media.
Marketers capitalized on this opportunity during the pandemic when several in-person networking events and tradeshows were canceled, causing them to connect with prospects and partners on social media. And while most marketers are aware that consumers are active on social media, not many grasp that B2B buyers are, too.
With millennials making up the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, many are involved in the B2B sales process. In fact, in 2021, 60% of millennials were tech B2B buyers. Pair that with 86% of millennials being active on social media, and we’ve got a big opportunity on our hands.
How social media influences B2B buyers
Having an active social media presence impacts B2B buying in various ways. Sharing content and communicating with prospects and customers provides an inside look at your company’s culture and values, which is especially important in today’s day and age, even for buyers.
Beyond that, social media helps brands foster loyal communities around their specific product, service or brand. However, it’s not just the content you post that influences buyer decisions; your interactions with prospects on social media can also influence buyers who are actively researching and keeping a pulse on your brand. Effective social media, along with other digital efforts, influences 67% of industrial and manufacturing industry purchases alone.
How to get started with B2B social media
If you’re questioning where social media fits into your marketing strategy and how it can help you achieve your business goals, here are some tips to get started:
Align your business goals with your social media goals
Not many B2B brands utilize social media as a channel to support company-wide initiatives. Whether the goal is to reach new audiences, promote a product or service launch or share company news and PR, social media is a great way to support business goals and provides measurable results.
Adapt & repurpose your existing content for social media
Most B2B marketers understand that content is king. Knowing that, consider how you can repurpose your existing content for social media. Typically, B2B brands have an extensive library of content between ebooks, brochures, infographics, etc., on top of blog and website content. Adapting your content for social media is a time and budget-friendly way to get active on social media and provide your audience with valuable content.
Stay on top of social media trends
With a few content ideas to start with, you’ll want to keep social media trends in mind. Understanding today’s B2B buyers are social-centric and up to date with trends, you should be too. While any business can share company news or a repurposed blog post on social media, consider what your prospects are interested in, what your competitors are doing and how to differentiate your content.
B2B brands shouldn’t shy away from social media
Ultimately, if you want to connect and engage with B2B buyers, you have to be where they are to stay top of mind, and that’s on social media. As B2B marketers, the goal should always be to harness the potential of social media, rather than shy from it.
The world of social media is ever-evolving and can be hard to navigate, but the best practices listed above can help you lay the foundation and enhance your marketing strategy in a way that makes sense for your business.