A strong social presence is crucial for any brand. However, it can be hard for businesses to decide which social media platform to use. When it comes to B2B businesses, the answer should be a no-brainer.
LinkedIn has the highest ROI of any social media platform.
In fact, 80% of all social media B2B leads are generated from LinkedIn.
But just because LinkedIn can grow your B2B business doesn’t mean that it will. In fact, (despite the statistics), many B2B business owners claim that running social media campaigns on LinkedIn doesn’t “work.”
There is one thing that these B2B business owners have in common: they lack a marketing strategy.
Because of the importance of online marketing, you can find marketing companies that will provide just about any service. From video and blog post creation to lead gen, the services are endless.
But when B2B businesses purchase these services, they oftentimes do so individually. The business may reach out to a marketing company when they want a specific type of content, such as a marketing video or a few articles. The business will then post the content and call it a day. Then, when the content does not give them the results they were looking for, they blame the platform on which they posted the content.
Social media marketing expert Chris Brogan once said that:
“Often, B2B content is written to represent the company. Swell. Except your audience is most likely your customer base and prospects. To that end, write your posts with your customer’s usage in mind. Think about what they will want to know, and how you can be useful.”
The truth is that without a comprehensive marketing strategy, even the best marketing content will under perform.
Here’s why you need a strategy before starting a B2B social media campaign on LinkedIn…
1. Reach your target audience
Every piece of marketing content that you create should be directed towards your target audience.
Sure, you probably know who your target audience is. But what are their pain points? Even more importantly, how can you help solve their pain points? Finally, what message does your target audience want to hear?
Without a strategy, it’s impossible to consistently create content that answers these pertinent questions.
2. Help accomplish your specific business goals
Every B2B company should have specific goals.
Maybe you want to increase your sales by 25% in the next 6 months. How will you do that? If none of your content appropriately addresses customer pain points and you aren’t getting it in front of the right audience it’s unlikely that you will be able to increase your sales so drastically in your proposed time period.
A marketing strategy will ensure that your marketing content has a consistent voice and contributes to your business goals.
3. Fit into your sales funnel
What does your sales funnel look like? Do you want to receive a phone call from your leads? Direct them to a webinar? Place them in email drip? Do you process your leads through a complex CRM system?
Each and every piece of marketing content you publish should help feed leads into your sales funnel. Without a strategy, you won’t be able to properly implement CTA’s that will accomplish this.
On LinkedIn, you can post in the Feed, share articles on Pulse, create industry or interest-specific Groups, place branding and job placement ads, create a Business Showcase page among other tactics. Once you’ve laid out your objectives, you are better able to determine how best to multipurpose your content.
So think first …
- Who do we want to get in front of? (as specifically as possible)
- What do we have to offer that will be of interest, and solve problems? (case studies, video, articles, etc.)
- Where will we actively participate on LinkedIn? (Personal Profiles, Showcase Pages, Groups, etc.)
- When how often will we commit to being active on the LinkedIn platform? (network building, content posting, prospect communication)
- Why? (what is the overall objective)
Regardless of the type of company or its industry, every business needs to create a marketing strategy BEFORE running any social media campaigns. If you create or purchase marketing content without implementing it into a marketing strategy, you are quite likely wasting both your time and your money.