How Social Media is Influencing Decision-Making in B2B and B2C Companies ?
Social media plays a major vital role in our everyday’s life and has totally redefined the Digital Marketing strategies of all kinds of businesses and influence their buying decisions. According to Forbes, 80% of buyers use social media platforms to research their options before making their decision on a product/service.
Creating an account on social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram, and sharing the content/post, company information like giving a glimpse of work culture influences the B2B/ B2C buyers in making their purchase-related decisions.And also by utilizing the expertise of a Digital Marketing Agency, businesses can optimize their social media presence and leverage its influence to drive purchase-related decisions and ultimately achieve their marketing goals
B2B vs B2C Marketing:
About 90% of B2B buyers use social media to research and to engage with industry thought leaders. Before knowing the social media strategies for B2B and B2C marketing, we should better understand the unique differences between them as their audiences and their needs are different.
- B2B companies sell product/services to other businesses, while B2C companies sells their product/services to consumers.
- In B2B market, your customers may be of a specific to certain niche of product/services, while B2C are large scale markets that is built for wide range of products/service for their customers.
- B2B marketing is quite complex as the customers are more serious about the product information, content and the business spin. B2C marketing is comparatively simple as the customers precisely know little about the product and the promoting content can be less educatory.
- B2B companies focus on building personal relationship with other businesses so they can have a long- term business from them while B2C companies focus on selling the product as quickly to many people as they can.
- In B2B marketing, the purchase decisions by customers are more professional, calculative and less edgy/filled with emotions and certainly made by a group of people including the head/chief executive. But in B2C marketing, the purchases are based hardly on their own decisions and their emotions with the product/services influences those decisions.
Effective social media strategy for B2B Marketing:
Compared to B2C companies, B2B companies certainly have much smaller target audiences and so it becomes very harder to locate your target customers/buyers and grabbing their attention.
Here are the few practices to build a winning B2B social media marketing strategy:
1. Set the right goals:
What you are trying to achieve? Yes, the first step for every social media strategy is setting the right goals for your company. Don’t complicate much. Most of the companies have their prime goal to make and save money. First decide where your focus should be, then ensure your social media strategy goals align with your business goals.
Most of the companies focus on these prime goals:
- Create Brand Awareness
- Build customer relationships
- Generate Leads
- Educate current and new audiences
For example: If your customer doesn’t know who you are, what’s your product/service then whatever you do for your business development it goes in vain. Just keep in mind that, clients or prospects doesn’t use social media not only to buy things, but to learn and get connected with the organisation. So, posting some informational blogs or worthy posts keeps your prospects to discover your brand.
2. Identify your target audience:
Launching content/posts randomly in internet will surely miss your target audience. So, when starting with a social media strategy first figure out exactly who is your target audience, what content will engage them and what social media platforms do they mostly use.
Look into your top customers, and from their similarities develop your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). Develop content for those targeted audience, highlight their needs and this will help you stand out among your competitors. Sometimes focusing on the decision makers in client’s company will help you precisely. Conduct a research on these decision makers and develop the buyer’s persona like demographics, needs and their interests and create & post the content in social media that satisfy their needs.
3. Choose the right platforms:
Social media has numerous platforms, each with its own style and audience. For B2B business, LinkedIn is rated as the top and effective Social media site with 96% of users like senior-level influencers and decision makers. Moreover, it is considered to be the major platforms focusing majorly on business professionals and therefore making buyers to discover new partners and to connect with potential vendors. The content/posts you publish on LinkedIn have a solid chance of getting in-front of decision-makers as most of the readers are upper-level positions like Managers, directors, VPs and C-level positions.
When it comes to B2B marketing, next to LinkedIn is Twitter, as it’s not a platform for simply sharing the content or news, but also be able to outreach and for client support. As Twitter’s lifespan is relatively small, promote your company’s product multiple times through tweets.
Facebook and Instagram are the both equally used platforms by B2B companies to engage the clients with highly visual content and to generate leads with niche markets if we properly research and promote the content. An extra bonus thing in both platforms is we can promote through paid ads and can be visible to your target audience whenever they scroll their pages.
4. Create valuable content and engage with audience:
This is harsh reality that most of the B2B business struggle to increase their followers as their content will be boring as enough to engage the audience. So, it’s nothing wrong in adding some humour to the content and not to be more professional. When it comes to social media marketing, do create content with your happy employee post, celebration post and establish yourself as a professional and both emotionally connected organisation. Keep in mind, the readers can be chief executives but they are not robots.
Most of the customers expect quick response to their query or complaints within 24 hours. And if the customers failed to respond to negative feedbacks, there comes a thought of dropping the deal with that business. So, it’s important to engage with the customers constantly and to be in touch with the loyal and regular customers.
5. Measure your efforts:
It’s mandatory to know if your SEO efforts are worth the time spent in social media marketing, on-page SEO, content marketing. The important metrics to be analysed from time-to-time are Conversion rate, Click through rate (CTR), Impressions, Engagement rate, followers and it goes on. These Key Performance Indicators (KPI) can be tracked with multiple different tools like Google analytics, Google Search Console, Google My Business for local SEO and some paid tools….
For B2B marketers, its more like a question of how you are going to reach out to your customer in social media. So, rather pushing yourself to sales, build meaningful connections and engage with the prospects using these social platforms. Remember, overall goal is to stay top-of-mind of customers/clients and so keep on posting an informational content, emotional posts and give the customers a reason to engage with you.
As a Top Digital Marketing Agency in India, we understand that not all businesses are the same. That’s why we prioritize your specific metrics and goals to develop a customized marketing strategy and select the most suitable platforms for your business.