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Expert POV: B2B Social Media in 2017

By: Andrea Panno

Sagefrog was built on the principles of integrated marketing and by our definition that includes the use of social media. In the B2B industry, however, much debate surrounds the validity of social media and its ability to contribute to lead generation and marketing return on investment (ROMI).

Every day, we’re implementing, integrating and optimizing marketing tactics and programs for B2B companies ranging in size and industry from healthcare and technology to manufacturing and business services. We’re constantly challenged to prove ROI to our clients and defend the purpose and value behind all the channels we recommend and use – and social media is no exception.

Where do we stand on using social media in a B2B marketplace?

The short answer: We encourage the use of certain social media channels for B2B companies when supported by an integrated marketing program.

The long answer: The two primary purposes of social media when utilized in conjunction with an integrated marketing program include increasing market exposure and increasing website traffic. The most effective B2B social media programs take all of the following characteristics into consideration:

1. The Primary Advantage

Social media is a low-risk distribution channel that lets you publish company news, blogs, and content marketing assets to the masses for a relatively modest investment. If your integrated marketing strategy is already generating public relations activity, content marketing, website updates and so forth, it’s advantageous to maximize the exposure of those tactics via social media.

2. The Perfect Candidate

The right B2B candidate for social media usage is a company that: already has an integrated marketing program in place; maintains an active marketing point person to photograph office culture on a regular basis; produces frequent company news and content marketing assets to be distributed on social; and has an engaged employee base that will interact with company channels.

3. The Right Channels

The most popular social channels we recommend for B2B companies in order of priority include LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram. While all of these channels contribute to increased market exposure and web traffic, each platform provides a host of unique benefits. For starters, LinkedIn is a full-funnel marketing tool, ideal for sales professionals; Facebook makes companies appear and act more approachable; Twitter generates maximum impressions; YouTube is ripe for how-to videos and client testimonials; and Instagram helps display company culture for talent acquisition.

4. The Best Content

To increase market exposure and website traffic, there are certain types of content that work best on social media. The content we recommend in order of priority includes blogs, assets (such as infographics, checklists, and tip sheets – content often found at the consideration stage of the Buyer’s Journey), videos, podcasts, and workplace activity. The content itself, however, is not always enough; posts that include visuals such as images or charts perform significantly higher than posts without visual elements.

5. The Type of ROI

As experienced B2B marketers, we know that it takes seven times for people to really hear a message for the first time1 and social media helps facilitate this. When you align your expectations of social media with that notion, you can understand that social media ROI won’t always be quantified via marketing qualified leads (MQLs) but rather through brand awareness.

Do you need help with social media marketing or other B2B marketing services? Schedule a free consultation with the experts at Sagefrog to review your top marketing struggles and goals and get recommendations on the best tactics for your business.

Download Ebook

In this consultation, we’ll review your current marketing efforts, challenges and goals to provide our expert recommendations. Your takeaway will be a free Marketing Plan Summary delivered within one week of your session.

Are you interested in B2B online marketing services? Contact Sagefrog Marketing Group today.

1. Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman