Social Media for B2B Marketers in 2013

The B2B marketing landscape includes many channels that are influencing how businesses reach their respective audiences. Although email, mobile and websites are undoubtedly important to any successful campaign, social media for B2B is perhaps the most critical, according to Enterprise Irregulars’ Louis Columbus.

This year will be especially crucial for B2B marketing efforts, according to the writer, because potential clients are much more selective with their time.

“They want to know a company is in their corner and gets their problems – not at a simple level – but at the very heart of who the company is,” Columbus wrote. “This is especially the case with B2B manufacturers who have deep expertise in solving complex problems.”

Although social media is a helpful way for B2B marketers to reach their audiences, many chief marketing officers (CMOs) are resistant to the platform. Columbus explained that it is time for CMOs to stop discounting social media as a viable option and learn about it because more of their customers are using the channel.

Industry professionals agree that successful social media interactions can help B2B marketers gain customer loyalty and improve brand trust.

Social media for B2B marketing is about providing need

B2B marketers that go ahead with social media should realize that potential clients do not want to hear about their company all the time. Instead, firms should leverage the channel to their advantage by reaching out to their audiences by providing a service or need that fills a particular void.

According to Business 2 Community’s Gerry Moran, B2B marketers should identify the clients they most regularly communicate with and then reach out to them through Twitter or blog posts. This will help companies establish a greater relationship.

“A great rule of thumb is to ask your core group to do something only 10 percent to 20 percent of the time and give something to them 80 percent to 90 percent of the time,” Moran wrote. “Instead of asking what they want, give them what you think they need.”

Since B2B marketers are using many platforms to reach their targeted audiences, measuring success can be difficult. Industry professionals encourage businesses to use marketing automation tools to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns to ensure a return on investment is achieved.