Social Media offers a great opportunity for B2B companies, because it’s about networking, exactly the format breakfast meetings and local chamber meet-ups of old were built on.
LinkedIn is a bit of “no-brainer” for B2B, you can easily start by joining a group and connect with others in the same industry or those wishing to find more information about that sector. When it comes to Blogging, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook especially, things start to feel tougher.
Really it shouldn’t.
Social Media is all about people, and people buy from people; so the most important part of a B2B Social Media campaign is to let your personality come through.
1. Start a Twitter Account in Your Own Name
Talk about your area of expertise, look for people asking questions and help them out. Not enough conversation on Twitter about your market sector?
What a great opportunity!
Collate information from the around the web, leading experts, industry news, key manufacturers and suppliers. Feed this out via Twitter, with links to the original content, fill in the gaps with your own comment and you’ll be seen as a Sector Expert.
2. Grab a Video Camera
The Kodak PlayTouch will do just fine, small tripod and you’re ready to create your own weekly news channel on YouTube. You can talk about industry news, do product demonstrations or even interview people from within your company.
3. A Face for Radio?
A Zoom H2 voice recorder is all that’s required to start doing audio recordings instead, and publishing podcasts for free through iTunes.
4. Facebook is a Tough Cookie
I wouldn’t argue too strongly with anyone in B2B that didn’t think Facebook was a suitable platform. What I would say is don’t give too much regard to it’s reputation, but view it as another publishing platform. Another opportunity for people to connect.
Content from other areas could always be used to keep a Facebook Page up to date. Even have some fun with it. Do your customers visit you? Create a Facebook Place Page and offer some reward for customers who check-in whilst in reception.
5. Can’t Write Won’t Write
Now we come to my favourite Social Media tool for business-to-business, blogging.
If you are serious about business then you need to get serious about writing, and if you really can’t write you need to dictate it so someone else can type it up for you. Now I don’t care what you sell, when it comes to writing a blog there is an audience for every sector, and people looking for an answer to every conceivable problem.
In the UK there is a comedy news quiz “Have I Got News for You”. In part of the show they pick unusual publications. The panel have to complete the missing words from headlines in strangely titled, but real magazines. These have included Goat World, Arthritis News, International Car Park Design and Diarrhoea Digest.
Now I am sure that if these publications can find an audience you can for your market sector.
Using Social Media for B2B isn’t difficult, in fact it can be quite fun.
What will be your first article?