Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are Still the Key Networks for B2B

Our clients often ask me how they should leverage social media for their companies. The obvious answer is lead generation. But sometimes clients need to lay the groundwork for awareness of a new problem in the marketplace. Social media is a great place to listen, learn and lead the conversation around solutions to those problems. Marketing Profs shared this week that B2B companies continue to find success on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. You may not have time to give to all three networks. That's ok. Pick one and get engaged with it. You'll find that you get out what you put in.

How can you get started?

  1. Define what you want to achieve with social media. This is where you determine if your goal is lead generation, problem awareness, demonstration of thought leadership, or something else entirely. You may decide to pursue more than one of these goals. That's fine! Keep in mind that you may need different content to support different goals.
  2. Listen to the conversation. What is currently being said about the service you offer, or the problem you seek to solve? What are other thought leaders in the space already saying? These are the things you want to uncover so you can add relevant, valuable content to the conversation.
  3. Contribute to the conversation. This involves more than just tweeting out a link to your latest blog post. Try engaging with other thought leaders by asking them questions or sharing their work. You can also engage clients by highlighting their wins and offering congratulations. If nothing else, their marketing teams will appreciate the mentions!
  4. Lead your own conversations. Start posing questions or prompts for your followers. Provide opportunities for them to engage with you. Twitter polls are a great tactic for this. Or host a Twitter chat by asking followers to join a conversation online at a set date and time, and to use a hashtag to track the contributions to the conversation.
  5. Be flexible and keep your business goals in mind. New ideas and opportunities may present themselves while you are listening, learning and leading conversations. Keep an open mind and an eye on your business goals so you can leverage any new opportunities.

Most of the tactics we've discussed involve Twitter, but Facebook is still big for B2B because of its targeted advertising tools. You can spin up ads and test them out quickly and easily -- and more importantly within a set budget.

LinkedIn may be the place where you find the least amount of sustained conversation. But as long as people are looking for jobs, people will be using LinkedIn. If you are already doing a Facebook post, consider adding it to your company's LinkedIn page as well while you are at it. There may not be an immediate payoff in engagement, but a robust LinkedIn page can make a different when it's time to recruit new hires.

Do you have questions about generating content for social media? We can help! From setting up accounts to drafting posts to analyzing the ROI of your social activities, we're here for you. Drop me a line at katie@ksgilmore.com.

Katie Gilmore