Social media is only just beginning to lose its ‘shiny new thing’ sparkle, leaving a common misconception within the internet marketing world that social media strategies are only well suited to business to consumer, or B2C marketing. Looking back at how various social media strategies have unfolded, it’s clear that although B2C campaigns have shrouded themselves in hype, B2B has found its own solid footing within social networks.
It’s important to remember that a B2B social media strategy is remarkably different to a B2C one. Unlike the B2C environment, B2B sales often occur over a longer timeframe. Looking in the vicinity of months as oppose to hours, B2B social media strategies shouldn’t fuel the immediate purchase hype of a B2C campaign. Rather they should be focused on fostering new partnerships. An effective B2B social media campaign becomes a public front on which to set the scaffold for forming new long term business relationships, and then maintaining those relationships through the sales cycle. Our B2B internet marketing services are a great way to start this process.
The key advantage of online networking over its offline counterpart is simply in its reach. The internet has allowed many businesses to extend out of their home ground, playing in markets interstate and overseas. By providing business with a public platform to demonstrate their expertise, B2B social media campaigns have the potential to tap into new markets and forge new customer relationships.
Social networks recognise this, and have acted accordingly. Only last year LinkedIn launched its business pages, a free way for business to establish their presence on the network. Location-aware network Foursquare has now followed suit, announcing their new business pages on their blog on August 2. These business pages open up the new possibility of starting B2B relationships on a location-basis, and can then extend those relationships onto other networks.
Google+ is also making waves on the B2B social media scene, recognising the need for business pages from the outset (they have asked business to hold off creating personal profiles as pages are on the way). We expect Google+ business pages to build on the success of Facebook Pages and LinkedIn business profiles allowing for a powerful marriage between search and social media.
There’s huge potential for B2B marketing within social media, and an effective strategy can unlock some stellar new business partnerships. We can help you reach a larger client base with our B2B social media strategies. You can contact us for more information and a free consultation.