Social Media still struggles in B2B

If you were to watch that video in isolation you’d think B2B social marketing was doing very well for itself in terms of acceptance and use. In my experience the opposite is true.

B2B Social Marketing is still not taking off because:

  • it is nothing more than buzzword for C-level who want to do it to say they’re doing it; who simply want to keep up with the Jones-es.
  • they want to do it but don’t know where to start or end
  • they don’t understand the impact of implementing a Social Media strategy in terms of time and money

Below are two key things companies should consider to really make the most of the opportunities B2B Social Marketing offers:

  1. define a strategy not a technology – Define the objective you’re trying to meet and then is SM can meet it and how. Too often being on Facebook/LinkedIn is the drive rather than the business objective.
  2. understand the realities of social marketing – you will not see immediate results and you need to invest (employee time and company money) to make it work.  If you cannot fulfill the expectations you will create through a SM programme then don’t start.  Better to have an “ignorant” audience than a pissed off one.

Not taking the two steps above is what leads to a lot of B2B SM programmes dying a slow and painful death.

I believe SM can work for B2B, there have been some successes (see here) but for the vast majority of companies it needs more thought (from a client and agencies alike) at the front end.  It also needs someone at the top with the forethought, drive and patience to give it a proper go.

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