Ever find yourself trying to convince people that B2B marketing is fun? Welcome to the club. But can we blame them when boring is the stereotype? People notoriously pin B2B marketing as bland infographics and eBooks. However, that doesn’t have to be the case, and shouldn’t be – especially for B2B social media.
As someone who works in B2B marketing and knows the truth… I’m here to break the stereotype that B2B social media is always boring – and in the process give you 5 tips on how to have fun with B2B social media.
1. Involve your employees
Social media is a place for people to interact with each other, so why should your company’s approach be any different? After all, your employees are your biggest advocates. Foundry found that IT decision-makers actively rely on online communities and discussion forums throughout the technology purchase process. Additionally, according to Inc.com research, employee advocacy results in a 5x increase in web traffic and 25% more leads. Before diving into what employee advocacy is on social media… I’ll dive into what it’s not.
Before diving into what employee advocacy is on social media… I’ll dive into what it’s not.
What employee advocacy is *NOT*
- Writing canned posts and asking employees to copy, paste, and share
- Asking employees to share company page posts with no context
A huge misconception when it comes to employee advocacy is to simply throw content at your employees and ask them to repost. The whole point of successful employee advocacy is to create a community where your employees feel empowered to share their ideas and thoughts, about – really anything.
What are some ways to create real employee advocacy?
Experiment with software
- LinkedIn SalesNavigator – Uncover the best ways to connect with prospecting leads through your company’s combined network.
- EveryoneSocial – A tool to empower your team to share and create important marketing, recruiting, and sales content on social.
- Shield – Access stats and analytics for your personal brand on LinkedIn. (I have used the Shield free trial myself and it’s an awesome way to understand the assets your brand can be to your company and yourself.)
Other ways to leverage software include using UTM codes for attribution credit. Having employees post links with UTM tracking allows them to see exactly who is engaging with their specific content. Or try out a self-attribution form field – for example, “Where did you hear about us?”, the ideal answer… “your employee on LinkedIn”.
Make it a competition
Make social media a game! Select your winning metrics, whether that be impressions, engagements, or comments. The winner gets bragging rights – or you can offer up a gift card to heighten the stakes.
Make a Slack channel
Create a Slack channel for your team to collaborate. Employees can use Slack channels to give tips on what’s working or what’s not, encourage engagement, or even just lift each other up!
Encourage personal development
Encourage employees to not post just for the sake of your company, but also themselves. Posting on LinkedIn and social media is great for career development and positioning yourself as a thought leader in the B2B community. Whether your employees are posting on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Reddit, having them advocate for you is one of the best ways to have a successful B2B social strategy. And remember, it’s not just about posting – it’s about commenting, engaging, and truly building a community.
2. Speak to your branding
Brand is important in B2B marketing, but often overlooked.
A strong brand can help you:
- Outshine your competition
- Build trust with potential buyers and current customers
- Renew and upsell deals
- Give decision-makers the confidence to advocate for you
Social media is one of the best channels to emphasize your brand voice, so have fun with it! Try out these branding tactics:
Developing a brand style
Does your brand stick to the more formal serious voice, or lean toward creative and loud? Either way, it’s important to develop a consistent brand style across your social media channels. Developing a brand style unique to your company allows you to stand out against your competition.
Be consistent with your hashtag use, and tone of voice. Another cool way I’ve seen brands distinguish themselves on LinkedIn is with imagery such as cover photos and profile picture backgrounds. For example, here at Foundry, we use LinkedIn banners.
Celebrate your employees
Employee spotlights are great ways to promote your brand. Take to social to showcase your employee’s hard work, hobbies, and appreciation for everything they do. Your employees are the backbone of your business, making them an essential part of your brand.
Showcase company culture
Company culture is huge in B2B brands. Post about your company outings, team dinners, parties, or even just being in the office together. People love seeing what fun things companies do to foster a positive work environment. A positive company culture = more trust in your brand.
Create excitement around new products and launches
You just worked so hard on a new product or launch. Now for the fun part, get people excited about it on social media! Your customers want to celebrate new features that they can leverage.
Brand gives you credibility, and builds trust with your prospects and current customers. What better way to showcase that than where they interact the most?
Get involved with other companies in your industry! Doing so is a great way to create buzz and boost your social media presence. Whether you are promoting a webinar together, a new integration, or a blog swap – make sure to tag the other company and interact with their content as well. Cross-promoting on social media allows you to tap into your partner’s audience, and for them to benefit from exposure to your audience as well.
4. Engage with your audience
Engaging with your audience on social channels is one of the best ways to spice things up. Encourage individuals to leave comments on your posts, respond to mentions, and even get involved with community discussions. LinkedIn polls are another great way to keep your audience interested and to learn more about their opinions/needs in the process. Pay attention to what posts your audience engages with, this will allow you to have a better idea moving forward on what content delivers value and is interesting.
5. Leverage video
Video is one of the most engaging things to post on social media. If you aren’t leveraging B2B video in your social strategy, you should consider the benefits:
- Allows B2B companies to be more creative
- Relates to the personable side of buyers
- Captures interest and attention
And how could this article be complete without a quick intent data plug?
Interactions on social media = intent data. Build your brand on social media, keep it interesting, and pay attention to who interacts with your content. Oftentimes, social media engagements are great indicators of potential buyer interest. Use this information to better understand what your account’s needs and challenges are, and how you can reach them.
After reading – I hope you can better make your case that B2B marketing can be fun, and implement a few of these tips into your own social media strategy. Social media is a fantastic asset to your marketing strategy while allowing you to be creative and bold in the process.
Want to see Foundry’s B2B social media strategy in action? Follow along on LinkedIn.