Today’s teens are the first generation to raised with easy access to the internet almost from birth. When they were born into the world, so too were Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. While they were learning to walk and talk, they were also learning to like, tweet, and share.
This means that today, they are as fluent on social media as they are in person, with their virtual lives being just as important as their real lives. So if you’re struggling to get results from your company’s current social media strategy, who better to ask than the experts?
Read here for tips on how to combine your CRM with customer-centric marketing.
What Social Media Platform Should I Use as a B2B Marketer?
As a B2B marketer, it might seem intuitive to stick with LinkedIn, a tried-and-tested platform built specifically with business in mind. You’ve used it, it works – so why try anything different?
The benefits of employing a diverse range of platforms is supported by recent research from the Social Media Examiner, which shows that the most commonly used service is in fact Facebook, with 43% of B2B marketers choosing it over LinkedIn as the most important platform for generating leads and spreading their brand.
Why use Social Media for B2B Marketing?
Before the dawn of the internet, teenagers proudly displayed their brand through the music they listened to and the clothes they wore, from the Sex Pistols and a safety pin piercing to the Spice Girls and crop tops. Today, they have social media, the perfect medium to let their audience know who they are and what they stand for.
You want your customers to know that they’re doing business with a great company with good people, and social media is the best place to showcase that. Maybe you’ve won an industry award, or you’re spearheading a new community initiative? Share it! You’ve got nothing to lose, and everything to gain.
As Amaze’s social media consultant Graeme Delap puts it:
“In B2B markets people don’t buy from companies without checking them out online first. So the first place people go to consider, review and check you out, is your website. Therefore, the more people that you get to your website checking you out, the more chances you have of doing business.”
A great example of this is the pharmaceutical company Novartis, whose Instagram feed is full of some of the great ways that they give back to communities all over the world.
Look at any teen’s social media feed and you won’t just see their own statuses, photos, and videos – you’ll also see them participating in and responding to the content of others, having conversations and creating connections. But how can that help B2B marketers? The answer is: social selling.
Social selling is the development of a relationship with potential clients by engaging with them through social media, actively searching for new customers on social platforms and responding to their posts, just as you would yourself. The benefits of a friendly olive branch can’t be underestimated, with 78% of marketers who employ social selling reporting better sales than those who don’t. So maybe you want to congratulate them on a recent industry award, or need some friendly advice? Ask them! Start a conversation and go from there.
With blogs, live videos, photos and more to show to potentially huge audiences across a huge assortment of platforms at the touch of a button, social media is the best place for teens to show off their talents. Whether it’s an impressive feat of rollerblade skill or a heated freestyle rap battle, teens know that the best place to get noticed is online.
And they’re not alone – B2B marketers are beginning to cotton onto the fact that content creation drives up hits and gets them noticed. The multinational conglomerate General Electric (GE) made waves with its quirky, engaging, and educational social media campaigns, employing a blend of text, media, and personalized responses to showcase its wares – there’s even a Snapchat!
It doesn’t matter what your company sells – with a little imagination and a bit of creativity, you can advertise your brand in an approachable, inventive style. GE achieves this by weaving stories that show how its products create change in the world.
What Can I Learn About Social Media from Today’s Teens?
“While social media may not work for direct sales in B2B, it is a powerful source for both outreach as well as creating the kind of consensus that B2B decision making necessitates. Why? Because consensus is about people, and people connect with people.” (source)
So what lessons can we take away from the tech-savvy teens of today? Well, don’t limit yourself to one platform you’re comfortable with: achieve maximum audience engagement by spreading yourself out across all social media services, utilizing video, blogs and photos to create an exciting, content-driven social media feed. As the blog from Shopify Plus illustrates, creating consensus should very much be a people-driven strategy for your business.
Don’t shy away from taking about the great work you’re doing, engage with prospective customers online and start a conversation. Finally, don’t be afraid to show off a little – but maybe keep your rap battle skills to yourself...