Even B2B companies are just people trying to communicate with other people. This truth plays out in these five B2B social media trends.
Social media is often put on the back burner in B2B marketing. However, it plays a crucial role and should remain part of your company’s integrated marketing plan.
Social media marketing allows companies to enhance brand awareness and organically connect with employees and existing and potential clients. In fact, there are over 4.5 billion social media users to date, and 84% of B2B executives use social media when making purchase decisions. When leveraged correctly, social media can certainly impact your B2B brand’s bottom line. Though it may be a smaller piece of the pie, it’s still important. Every touch point counts.
Social media involves more than just having an account. There is an entire strategy behind social media marketing that can shape not only your brand but the user’s experience. Follow these five B2B social media trends to draw in leads and provide an exceptional brand experience.
5 B2B Social Media Trends for 2023
- Emphasis on Social Strategy
- Using Social as an Outlet for Content
- Leveraging Personal and Brand Accounts
- Creating Short-Form Video
- Working with B2B Influencers
#1. Emphasis on Social Strategy
From trending audio on TikTok to clickable, shoppable content on Instagram, there’s a lot happening on social media. That’s why the first B2B social media trend is all about emphasizing your social strategy – instead of just throwing the latest tactic at the wall to see what sticks.
The strategy includes deciding what channels you should be on, picking the types of content you want to share, and, of course, outlining your goals for social media. Focusing on the social strategy will help your company meet your audience where they are with the content they’ll love.
#2. Using Social as an Outlet for Content
Speaking of content: Social media is an outlet for content, not a reason for content.
Let me explain.
Social media influencers create content specifically to post on social media, and that works great for them. However, B2B companies should not try to follow the same approach (it’s not sustainable; plus, everyone knows you’re a business, not a person). What works for viral content creators is not the same for B2B companies.
Content shouldn’t be created for the sake of getting posts uploaded on social. Effective content should revolve around not only what represents your brand but also (and most importantly) what the users want to see. Social media is just a way to amplify and repurpose content, reach more users and raise brand awareness. Knowing this will continue to revolutionize the way B2B companies approach social media – strategically.
#3. Leveraging Personal and Brand Social Accounts
At its origin, social media was for people. All profiles were personal Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn profiles.
Of course, since this is where the people are, companies started to join, too. Today, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook all allow companies to have their own profiles.
The tendency for B2B marketers is to focus solely on the company accounts – we are a business speaking to other businesses, after all. Right? Nope. We are still people trying to reach other people.
As you mature your social media marketing efforts, consider leveraging both brand social media accounts and personal or professional profiles. Create a brand account where you can post content related to your brand and have employees create a professional/personal account where they can support your brand and network by resharing content or offering their expertise. When employees represent the brand through their own professional accounts and interact with other users, that relationship builds credibility for the brand connected to the profile.
Since human interaction is everything these days, leveraging personal accounts (with employee buy-in, of course) will give you a leg up as you navigate the fast-paced universe of social media as a brand.
#4. Creating Short-Form Video
Short videos are all the rage on almost every social media platform right now. Even for B2B audiences.
To retain your users’ attention, a short video is typically anywhere between 10 and 30 seconds. Use short videos to:
- Introduce a new product or service
- Share a fun fact or tip about your industry
- Answer common questions
- Highlight your team members and their expertise for recruitment purposes
85% of marketers find video to be the most effective format on social media for engagement. That is more of a reason to hop on the video bandwagon in 2023.
#5. Working with B2B Influencers
We have been in the influencer era for years now, thanks to B2C marketing and our beforementioned viral content creators. It’s starting to gain traction in B2B social media spaces, too. Once again, it all comes down to that personal connection.
Just like your employees can be a human voice for your brand on social, so can an influencer. Generally, 92% of people trust recommendations from people rather than from brands. So getting an “in” from an influencer can help you overcome the long and more difficult sales cycles of B2B.
So, how do you actually reach your industry’s influencers? You probably have already done some of the legwork, which starts with:
- Developing a B2B buyer persona to understand your target audience.
- Researching publications and organizations industry professionals are members of.
- Meeting with industry players at trade shows to form relationships.
- Exploring LinkedIn to see who interacts with each other in relevant conversations.
Conclusion: Human Experience Is Key
So long as the general population stays on social media, it will remain a popular marketing channel for B2C and B2B companies alike. But keep in mind, it’s all about people first. So, use it strategically. Have intent with what you post and how you manage it, and meet your users where they are. Like most marketing activities, if you provide genuine value, the rest will follow.