Marketing Campaigns > Social Media Strategy
Facebook/ LinkedIn/YouTube: B2B Social Media Marketing Strategy and Execution
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B2B social media marketing strategy is the first step to a successful implementation of social media marketing campaigns. Whether it’s Facebook marketing, LinkedIn Marketing, Twitter, YouTube and many others, you must understand your own goals with B2B social media marketing.
Most companies seem to know by now that they should have a company page as part of their B2B social media strategy, but that’s just the start. Here are the common stages of implementation of B2B social media marketing:
Stage 1 – Pre-Social: Traditional “broadcasting” marketing where research is mostly done via focus groups, surveys and phone interviews. No social listening and a high level of skepticism to invest resources in social media.
Stage 2 – Experimental: Isolated efforts to get an initial understanding of the social media space. A limited effort to create a social presence, but still keeping social media disconnected from the actual business. No follow-up.
Stage 3 – Passive Listening: Dabbling in social listening, receiving insights from collective listening, or identifying key players/responders within the organization. Sharing information within the organization and setting a B2B social marketing strategy that has definite goals and ROI measurement. At this point, you need to receive management support and resources.
Stage 4 – Engagement: A dedicated team is allocated to react to social media discussions that made references about the company. Cross-functional targets and integration with traditional data are aimed, and the company not only responds in a timely manner, but also sees direct link between social media marketing activity and business results. ROI Measurements are tracked and reported.
Stage 5 – Full Commitment: All employees are trained to use the social media channel to respond to clients/prospects. Social listening, engagement and crisis avoidance are fully implemented as part of the business operation and upper management is notified in real-time about events and progress.
What Are The Benefits of Implementing a B2B Social Media Marketing Strategy?
There are four main reasons companies choose to implement social media marketing:
- Foster existing customer loyalty: Social media marketing has created a completely new way to easily interact with your clients. Hear their feedback, find out what you could be doing better, or keep them up to date with new developments or offers; with an effective B2B social media strategy, it’s never been easier to quickly and efficiently gauge the mood of your clientele. It’s also a way to effectively nurture leads from your existing client base.
- Earn new client leads: Alternatively, you can focus your social media marketing strategy on building new client leads. Social media marketing can play an important role with nurturing prospects and removing objections.
- Expand brand awareness: Many established companies feel that well-crafted social media marketing (e.g., blogs) will lend credibility to their brand. Which brand seems more legitimate: a Facebook page with 4 “Likes”, or one with 4,000? Your first impression will likely take you to the brand with 4,000 fans.
- Increase Web traffic: Social media marketing can drive enormous amount of traffic, leveraging the word-of-mouth power and value-added content. See how your traffic numbers goes up using B2B social media marketing strategy.
Why Is It So Important to Have a B2B Social Media Marketing Strategy?
Without clear objectives in the form of a cohesive B2B social media strategy you’re bound to fail, spending a lot of resources but getting very few results. Even though it’s free of cost to join any major social networking site, it’s never free in resources. The time and energy spent crafting and implementing a successful social media strategy is significant, and if it’s not going to pay off your resources are better spent elsewhere. When crafting a B2B social media strategy, you should determine:
- What is your objective from the social media marketing?
- Who do you want to reach?
- Which channels you would like to use (Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, Digg, etc.)?
- What tactics will work best for your audience?
B2B social media marketing strategy will serve as a guiding document to ensure that your implementation of B2B social media marketing throughout different stages will be successful, and will the ROI results that you are hoping to achieve. It could make the difference between Farmville (A popular virtual destination on Facebook and iPhone) or a ghost town.