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Technology Marketing: Is Your B2B Social Media Strategy Sending Mixed Signals?

Posted on Jan 10th, 2012
Written by TopRank Marketing
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  • Technology Marketing: Is Your B2B Social Media Strategy Sending Mixed Signals?
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    Is your social media strategy sending your customers mixed signals?

    As a B2B organization with a focus on technology, you may believe that you are facing additional obstacles that your B2C counterparts are not.

    Many of you have tried to implement social media in the past without much success.  However, you may still believe that B2C companies have it easier because they have a direct line to their consumers.  The good news is, you do too!  In fact, 58% of IT buyers use social media to make tech buying decisions.

    Getting in front of the proper decision makers and influencers when selling SaaS, IT, or any other technology is not as hard as you may think.  It is imperative that you follow a series of social media best practices directed at finding, engaging, and motivating your social network to take action.

    Developing Social Media Personas

    The first rule of social media for technology companies is to know your customers.  How can you connect with your customers if you don’t know who they are?  Well developed personas will help you answer a variety of questions about your customers including:

    • Where they spend time online
    • How they interact on social chanels
    • What type of information they share most frequently
    • What motivates them to interact, buy and refer

    Establish A Voice & Stick With It

    The growing pains associated with implementing a social media strategy often include finding a defined voice and direction for your brand.  While you may be working with an internal or outsourced team to execute your social media strategy, you must find consistency.  A good first step is to sit down with your team and discuss your company mission, goals, offering, and pain points of your customers to determine how information should be presented.  Then take some time to research your top 5 competitors and see what type of interaction and success they are having with their campaigns.

    Confusing Content Kills Network Growth

    While there is nothing wrong with providing a variety of information on your business profiles it is key that you remain consistent.  If you are targeting CFO’s responsible for technology purchases at large organizations, it is important that the content provided is helpful, informational, and aimed at solving their business problems.  It can get tricky when you are targeting multiple decision makers and influencers like the buying groups often associated with B2B purchases, so be mindful of exactly who your audience is and what type of content and context will have the desired impact.

    Facts Tell & Stories Sell

    When selling a complex solution or service, sharing stories about customers that you have helped can be of enormous value.  It’s true that your typical CFO or purchasing manager will be very mindful of the ROI associated with purchasing your product. But do not underestimate the power of a well written client case study or testimonial.  A client story will add validity to your message, which is of enormous value when marketing via social media.  Keep in mind that you are asking for an investment, and in order to gain the trust of that customer you may need to provide additional information that builds trust.

    If you have a more traditional marketing background try to remember that many of the same basic marketing principles apply to social media marketing.  It is extremely valuable to  research your customers, find consistency in branding, create cohesive content, and share meaningful customer stories.

    If you are just beginning to develop an online marketing strategy or are a social media networking professional I would recommend running a social media audit of your existing social media marketing program and incorporating the tactics included in this post.  Not sure where to start?  You can always contact the team at TopRank for additional information on what is involved and where to begin.