As a business communication tool, social media has fundamentally changed the way businesses interact and engage with their customers. Several features, such as the ability to instantly respond to customers, allow businesses to maintain and grow relationships online. However, if you are in a B2B company, how can social media benefit your company?
According to the latest B2B Content Marketing report from the Content Marketing Institute, 83% of B2B marketers are using social media. If you’re part of the 17% still not convinced that these platforms have a use in the B2B world, you’re putting your business at a disadvantage.
As Business2Community discusses, having a social media presence is a necessity for any company in today’s digital world. A revised forecast from Forrester suggests that social media ad spend in the EU is set to increase to $23.5bn over the next five years, a rise of 26% when compared to its previous projection of $18.7bn, B2B Marketing reported.
Here’s how having a company Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn page (to name just the big four) can boost your business:
Firstly, whilst having social media platforms might not have a direct impact on your company’s search rankings, it does help to increase your brand’s online visibility, and increases authority and brand recognition.
As an Accenture study revealed, the overwhelming majority (94%) of B2B customers conduct online research prior to making a final purchasing decision. Having your company’s social media pages show up in the search engine results page can aid decision makers in forming positive opinions about your company. However, this can only work with frequent updates; if your company generates content more frequently, there is a higher chance for users to see your business when they search for key words, or specific hashtags. If a potential lead clinks on your Facebook page and the last post was two years ago, there’s a good chance they’ll click away.
Effectively targets audiences
Social media platforms provide B2B organisations with the tools for targeted advertising, allowing them to deliver the most relevant content to the right people for the highest engagement. Facebook’s advertising, for example, can target audiences based on their geographic location, age, interests, whilst on LinkedIn, you can target a specific group of people based job title, industry sector and experience, giving you the ability to target potential leads more effectively.
Emotions are becoming increasingly important in B2B marketing, with more and more marketers realising that purchase decisions are influenced by both rational and emotional factors. While B2B marketing has traditionally been focused on addressing the pragmatic side, social media marketing can provide companies with the platform to address the human aspect of decision-making and can help shape closer connections with individual buyers, according to Forbes.
Lastly, when compared to B2C, the B2B sales cycle is long, sometimes lasting months. It is important, during these cycles, to nurture relationships and stay relevant. But how can you do that without bothering your prospects? Social media!
As Forbes puts it, “social media allows you to be present without constantly knocking on their doors.” Your posts showing up on their newsfeeds act as a gentle reminder of your products, your brand, and why they should maintain a relationship with your company.
Not only does having a social media presence for your business have huge benefits, it is a necessity for companies today. If you’d like help getting to grips with social platforms from a business perspective, call Chapman Consulting today on 0208 977 3200.