Tag Archives: Content Marketing

5 Ways Your B2B Marketing Strategy can Improve with Social Media

Written by: Sarah Shapleigh
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While no one can argue that social media is extremely important in any B2C strategy, when it comes to B2B marketing people aren’t always so sure. In a world where SEO and email typically reign supreme, social media can seem like an add-on or a lower priority component of the larger strategy.

Consider these statistics:

  • As of 2015, 65% of adults now use social media compared to 7% in 2005.
  • Facebook has nearly 1.4 billion users and generates 4.5 billion likes daily.
  • Twitter has over 284 million active users posting 500 million tweets per day.
  • 92% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family more than any other form of advertising – just 10% trust brands today (Lithium).
  • 81% of consumers are influenced by their friends’ social media posts (Lithium).

However, social media is no longer an innovative, new way to drive awareness and sales for your brand.

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We Are Social

Essential to your organization’s survival in the competitive B2B landscape, it needs to be an integral part of any B2B marketing strategy. Social media helps B2B businesses showcase their credibility, acquire and retain customers, and build a strong reputation. “While tried-and-true B2B marketing techniques such as search engine optimization and email still bring plenty of prospects to the door, social media entices them to enter a dialogue, pick up some information of value and step into the sales funnel” (eMarketer).

Furthermore, social media can be even more impactful for a B2B company than for a B2C company. This is because B2B companies, as Convince and Convert explains, usually have “a smaller potential customer base, a higher average price point, and customer decision funnel that is more influenced by word of mouth and reputation.”

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eMarketer

Here are 5 tips for developing a social media strategy for B2B companies:

1. Understand your audience and engage with your customers on social media. Leverage social listening to understand the pain points for your customer – what are their needs and desires and how can your product/service help solve those problems? The main benefit of leveraging social media for B2B marketing is to build relationships with current and potential customers.

2. Use social media for content promotion. Share various forms of content such as videos, photos, or longer form content to showcase your products/services in a broader context and to drive the authentic voice of the brand.

3. Drive traffic to website. Ensure that your website is prominently highlighted on all of your social channels and within your posts. Utilize link tracking to see which content drives people to click through to the website.

4. Invest in social video to produce more leads. According to a report by Software Advice, “video is the most-used content type and the content that generated the most leads for surveyed B2B marketers in 2014.”

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Software Advice

5. Increase brand awareness with paid social. Allocating a percentage of the total budget to promoting social posts helps ensure that your content is visible to the right audiences. Social networks such as LinkedIn offer advanced targeting options for promoting your brand’s content, which ensures that you reach the most important and targeted audiences.

Social media is extremely valuable for top-of-funnel engagement and for generating strong leads for B2B companies. As we move into 2016, a social media component is going to be critical for every B2B marketing strategy.

SMWNYC 2015: “The Future of Social Data”

Written by: Hannah Redmond
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One of my favorite parts of working in social media is identifying insights via social listening data to help our clients drive real business decisions that will help propel their brands toward their goals.

Last week, I attended a session called “Using Social Listening in Business” at Social Media Week NYC, hosted by the CMO of Brandwatch, Will McInnes. He made some solid predictions as he discussed the future of social data, which I found to be both very interesting and also parallel to the way we’re thinking about data within our agency. It was a great session to sit in as we’re constantly looking for ways to optimize our social listening strategies and tactics for our clients.

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McInnes summed up the future of social data into four categories:

  • Predictive: We are getting closer to predicting what will happen to consumer behavior, business, or to content based on the data from the past. How will we get even better at it?
  • Blended: How can we better blend multiple sources of data and research from a business and various sources to help get us closer to real predictions and successes?
  • Physical: How do we get all of the amazing data we’re finding in the social space to the front lines of a business?
  • Visual: How can we better and more accurately measure visual user content that may not have keyword branding and is harder to track?

The two ideas I found the most interesting were “Blended” and “Physical.”

The “Blended “ idea makes a lot of sense. As social media becomes more understood in organizations, it becomes an integral part in key brand activations and campaigns. This is resulting in a spike in curiosity about measurement within these organizations, whose marketers are now asking questions about the data and how we can use it more than ever before. The social listening and measurement tools we now have access to provide us with amazing data that can help guide business decisions on their own – but layer that onto sales data, CRM systems, web site and behavioral analytics, search trends, seasonality, and you have a much better picture of the insights. The reality is, this type of collaboration will take buy-in from a variety of stakeholders in an organization, but the ones who do it first will have an edge on the rest.

The “Physical” point also really struck me. As social media strategists, we often are not in the picture when insights found in social data are filtered back out to the physical space (if they are at all). We may help shape recommendations and decks – but they usually are specific to content. McInnes makes the point that the future of social data will include much more than strategic content marketing recommendations based on social, which can create changes in the physical way a business is run, by effecting change in-store, on packaging, in sales messaging, and more.

Overall, a key thing to think about here is expanding social insights and learnings beyond just the digital space.

Stats of the Week

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Every week we compile lots of interesting stats here at Fanscape. Here are some of our favorites from this past week:

Consumer Package Goods (CPG)

Earlier this year global investment bank, Jeffries and business advisory firm, AlixPartners published a joint study called, “Trouble in Aisle 5” which focused on the foods at home vertical.  Specifically they found that as Millennials and Baby Boomers get older, established food brands and traditional grocery stores will be under pressure to cater to changing consumer needs.

  • Food-at-Home Spending  to Jump by $50 billion Annually for Millennials and Decrease by Up to $15 billion Annually for Baby Boomers by 2020
  • Millenials are 23% Less Likely to Value Food Brands in Their Purchasing Decision and 18% Less Likely to Shop at Traditional Grocers
  • Millennial Grocery Shoppers Favor Deals over Brands
  • 6 in 10 used their smartphone to compare prices in a grocery story

Source: AlixPartners

Social Channel: Facebook

SocialBakers recently reported on a study they did on Facebook growth across industries.  They monitored 14 of the biggest Facebook industries for a period of three months, from July to September 2012 and assessed the industry’s social media potential from two perspectives: growth of average Brand size by number of fans and net increase of new Facebook pages in the industry.  What follows is a graphic showing their results:

Source: SocialBakers

Industry – Content Marketing

Most content marketing aims to drive pre- and post-sales activity, according to a November 2012 Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs report. However, in the same study of B2C content marketers in North America, 55% of respondents cited direct sales as a key metric of content marketing success, second only to increased web traffic.  Highlights of the report include:

  • Social Media is the top content marketing strategy
  • 6 in 7 US Internet users has been misled by videos that appeared to be content but turned out to be sponsored ads.

Source: Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs

Just for Fun

Facebook has been playing around with their “Talking About This” metric and as a result, the 2nd most “Talked About Brand” on Facebook is:

…oh the irony!

Stats of the Week

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Every week we compile lots of interesting stats here at Fanscape. Here are some of our favorites from this past week:

Travel

  • Types of Content on Facebook pages for Upscale/Luxury Hotels Worldwide
    • 77% Couponing
    • 46% Customer Service
    • 44% Contest
    • 30% User-Generated Content (UGC)
    • 4% Giveaway
  • In 2000, the internet accounted for 1-2% of hotel bookings.  Now, 50%+

(Source: L2)

Social Channels / Properties – Twitter

Consumers are increasingly mentioning brands on Twitter.  This may reflect how the channel is evolving.  (graph below)

  •  The % of Brand mentions is actually going down.  This is a reflection of consumers increasing the use of the social media service for conversations
  • Twitter is a destination, not just a portal
    • Page Views per Visit up 58.7% in 2012

Source: BazaarVoice

Social Media Marketing / Content Marketing

  • Roughly 9 in 10 marketers measure content marketing success by social engagement
    • In contrast, 3 in 4 measure by views of content and half look to lead generation
  • Social Media is the number 1 tactic used for content distribution.

Source: Outbrain

Fun Stats

Stats of the Week

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Every week we compile lots of interesting stats here at Fanscape. Here are some of our favorites from this past week:

Automotive

Dealer.com, DriverSide and GfK Automotive Research partnered to conduct the most extensive study to date on the impact of social media on car buying. Here are some of the highlights:

  • 38% will use social media to research their next vehicle.
  • 37% research a dealership
  • 31% learning about the expected price range
  • 29% learning about vehicle features
  • 28% narrow down brands for consideration
  • 26% find out where to service their vehicle

Social media is also used in discussing post-purchase experiences

You can also watch the video of the results of the survey HERE.

Some of the notable quotes from key industry members include:

  • “We know that more than 90% of folks are doing their auto research online.” – Jon Brancheau, VP of Nissan marketing at Nissan North America
  • “Social works best in the upper part of the funnel.  That’s not to say there aren’t specific initiatives you can apply in the lower funnel, but we find social is great to build brand consideration with different audiences.” – Carolin Probst-lyer, Manager of Digital Consumer Engagement at Chevrolet

Social Channels / Properties – Twitter

Track Social prepared an analysis on optimizing your performance on Twitter which was discussed recently on Social Media Today. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Photos outperform text by 91%
    • But, Photo Tweets only compose 2.3% of all total tweets
    • By far, the strongest way to generate Retweets is by Retweeting.
  • This is followed by hashtag
  • Questions and Captions have the lowest performance for most large brands in the study.

Social: Content Marketing

Per eConsultancy’s Content Marketing Survey Report:

  • Over 90% of respondents believe that content marketing will become more important over the next 12 months.
  • Nearly 3 in 4 believe “brands are becoming marketers.”
  • 4 in 10 brand marketers have a defined content marketing strategy.
  • In contrast, only 1 in 10 agencies have a defined content marketing strategy.

Fun Stats (Political Editiion)

Paul Ryan has about 10X more Facebook fans than Joe Biden