B2B social media marketing strategies have become liquid gold, to know it is to be set for life. Let’s play a game, shall we?
Put a finger down if you have an active social media account. I bet 97% put your fingers down. The pandemic-related lockdowns that kept people indoors brought about a lot of changes in lifestyles across the world.
This article will focus on the change knowing B2B media marketing strategies brings to the sales industry.
Impact of COVID-19
Our lives have been impacted by changes in how we do business, how we shop, how we think, and how we approach innovation and disruption. Thanks to Covid-19, the world of business and social interactions is witnessing one of the most remarkable transformations ever in the history of man.
A study done shows the number of people using social media from 2016 to 2021 increased by 115.59%. The accounts vary from having a LinkedIn account to an Instagram account.
Whichever channel you are using, it helps you build bridges with different people all over the world. Some organizations are also taking up the role of having an active social media account.
Most organizations make use of social selling as part of their B2B sales plan, so what is social selling?
Social selling uses the organization’s social media channels to connect with prospects and develop potential connections. The pandemic brought about a rapid increase in the role social media plays in the lives of both the millennials and the older generation.
Social networks have become an essential tool for researching brands and finding information about the products we want to buy. Sales is a very competitive industry, and there’s a lot of misleading ideas out there.
Before we harness the art of social selling through B2B social media strategies, let us first discuss the misconceptions around social selling.
Social Selling Misconceptions
Myth: It would help if you had an extensive network for you to use social selling.
Truth: This is one of the common misconceptions most people have about social selling. Yes, numbers help you have a robust social network. But what people fail to recognize is that relevancy is way more important than numbers.
Making use of warm introductions is key to your success. Statistics reveal that 55% of individuals buy products through social media, while 87% of online buyers claim that social media helped them purchase.
With these numbers, it becomes clear that the future belongs to social media and organizations that can tap into this gold mine.
Myth: It would be best if you were active on all social media channels.
Truth: You could use several social media channels, but this should not pressure you into using all the channels as a social seller.
Often than not, most social sellers focus on one or two channels.
Myth: You have to be always on your phone.
Truth: As a social seller, you’ll be required to generate connections online. However, it does not mean that you have to always be on your phone or computer. A great social seller understands that in-person interactions form the best connections.
But what about social selling on social media?
B2B-Online-Marketing and Social Media Channels Used in Social Selling
Disclaimer: when picking a social media channel to use, there are a few factors that you ought to consider. One factor that you ought to assess is your social media goals. This could be that you want to improve your brand’s visibility or wish to sell your product.
Identifying your objective will help you choose the right channel.
TikTok is a social media channel that recently got its oomph in 2020. Few organizations have ventured to use this channel.
And it is a channel that I believe more organizations should tap into, especially if their target audience is young people.
What You Need To Know About Increasing Your Social Selling Index On LinkedIn?
There are a few tips you can make use of to help improve your social selling index. Here is what you need to know that LinkedIn uses to help calculate your score.
1. To help build your brand, you should use images or banners that will help create a foundation for you.
2. For you to boost your score, reach out to the right prospects. Limit the number of cold connection requests you make.
3. Did you know that LinkedIn measures how you engage? With this, you should have relevant engagement. Before committing, always ask if the connection offers any relevance to your industry?
4. The index usually checks your relationship score. With this, it is best that you either leave a comment or even tag them. LinkedIn logarithm will pick up this and notice that you are building the relationship.
How To Harness Social Media Marketing For Your B2B Company?
This is the part you’ve been waiting for. So now that you know which channels are commonly used, the misconceptions revolve around social selling. Here is how you can master the art of social selling.
Sync your CRM with the sales navigator.
Did you know that anytime you sync your CRM, you will likely see a difference in social selling speed and precision?
The benefit of doing this is that with the help of your CRM, your sales navigator will be able to update any exciting information regarding the prospects you are targeting.
Start recording their calls and details.
This is an ideal strategy to launch follow-up conversations without leaving LinkedIn. By recording the calls, it will coach you on the topics the prospects best enjoy.
Make use of the shared experience filter.
Imagine this: you are at a seminar, and someone approaches.
The conversation is pleasant, and suddenly they mention that they are fans of watching a particular comedy show you like. This will spark up a bond as you two have a common thing.
Having common interests and experience tends to act as a social bridge. Fortunately, LinkedIn has a filter that quickly allows you to search for leads that have similar experiences or interests.
Is this something you genuinely want to venture into but do not know where to start? ai-bees has got you covered; we will help you send personalized messages that feature the prospect’s experience or shared interest. Why not give us a call and see your social selling experience change.
Use videos to scale up your social selling.
The closest you can get to interact with another person on the web is through a call or one-on-one meet-up. With social selling, if you wish to have one-on-one interaction, then make a video.
The video could be about an exciting idea you wish to share or an opinionated rant. You do not have to create the videos from scratch, as you can search for short snippets that align with your course.
Using videos will help create your lead generation clout.
The increasing popularity of Ephemeral Content
A flash-based or short piece of content is available only for a limited period before disappearing. Snapchat, Twitter, and Instagram Stories are good examples of ephemeral content.
When the average attention span of 8 secs is less than that of a goldfish, most online users like to consume content in formats like stories. The stories are short, engaging, and addictive in a way that makes people want to scroll through them for hours.
In January 2021, there were over 500 million daily active Instagram Stories users, an increase from 100 million users in 2016.
The Dominance and Growth of Social Commerce
As mentioned above, social media commerce is here to stay. Numerous brands have embraced social media platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook to sell their products.
The trend of social commerce has gained traction in the last few years, and it will only continue to grow as we transition to the future. A recent survey by Hootsuite recently asked their clients what they were trying to achieve with social media.
This aligns with the statistics mentioned above, where 87% of customers identified social media as helping them make purchase decisions, with 70% of individuals purchasing products online at least once a month.
Video Content and Live-streaming Will Become Part of the ‘New Normal’
Covid-19 has thrust us all into a world of video interactions with people who may have never used their video cameras before but are now participating in Zoom calls like seasoned videographers, with everyone adapting to live-streaming and online chat.
This means that the future of sales and customer success belongs to those creating compelling short informational video content.
So, suppose you’re not currently creating videos. In that case, it is time that you include them in your content strategy because, shortly, videos will dominate social media, and anyone who doesn’t realize this will have a tough time keeping pace.
Sophisticated technology will be integrated into Social Media more than ever
Looking into the future of social media, we can expect to see a rise in the adoption of Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR/AR). This is a market that is projected to hit $73 billion by 2024. VR adoption is still in its infancy in the social media space, but AR is a different story.
There are now augmented reality filters on powerful platforms like Snapchat and Instagram. Take Instagram, for instance, which offers numerous photo filters that use augmented reality. Have you seen the filters that can add makeup to your face, sunglasses, or bunny ears?
That is an example of augmented reality for social media. Another example is Sephora, a beauty brand that uses AR to allow its customers to try makeup before buying. The brand recently launched this feature on Facebook.
Increase in User Generated Content (UGC) in the Marketing Space
People trust friends and family over brands isn’t just a trend. It’s a fact of marketing. This is why companies are embracing the idea of using social media to create UGC for their brands.
By demonstrating authenticity and directing consumers towards products, UGC eases product trust issues. According to Stackla, 79% of people said that UGC highly influenced their purchasing decisions last year.
As we move into the future of sales and marketing, UGC will play an increasingly pivotal role in the success of brands, particularly within the social media space, where prospects relate better to stories from customers like themselves.
With the swift pace of change and a shift in sales and marketing trends towards digital content and social media, companies that will thrive in the post-Covid-19 future must strategically position themselves to adapt to these changing trends.
The world has turned a new leaf in professional work, and the impact of social media cannot be overlooked. Ephemeral content has become vital and, to have a chance at sustainability, jumping on this bandwagon is essential.