For 20% of B2B mar­keters, social media is one of the top three sources for qual­i­fied leads, accord­ing to the Chief Mar­keter B2B Lead Gen Out­look report.

The role of social media in demand gen­er­a­tion has evolved to encom­pass tar­get­ed lead gen­er­a­tion, influ­encer out­reach, lead nur­tur­ing, social lis­ten­ing and research. B2B mar­keters who want to suc­cess­ful­ly build an engaged fol­low­ing on social media must mas­ter new skills as well as embrace the unique­ness of social media mar­ket­ing.

When it comes to social media suc­cess, it’s impor­tant to remem­ber the first part of the phrase “social media.” It’s social. B2B mar­keters must approach their strat­e­gy with rela­tion­ships in mind. It’s a mat­ter of give-and-take, not a one-way broad­cast.

15 B2B Social Media Marketing Tactics

One of the com­mon themes you will see in the tac­tics list­ed below is that suc­cess­ful social media mar­ket­ing takes man­u­al labor. If you think there’s a pos­si­bil­i­ty of automat­ing your blog posts to go out at the opti­mal time of day with some trendy hash­tags and expect­ing mag­ic to hap­pen, think again. You have to make a reg­u­lar invest­ment out of your sched­ule.

1. Budget your time

Regard­less of whether you’re in a full-time social media or con­tent mar­ket­ing role, it’s impor­tant to bud­get your time for social media. Every B2B mar­keter needs a mas­tery of social media for per­son­al brand­ing, rela­tion­ships and influ­encer out­reach. Devote a block your cal­en­dar to ensure your time spent on social is pro­duc­tive.

Cal New­port, author and asso­ciate pro­fes­sor of com­put­er sci­ence at George­town Uni­ver­si­ty, says time-block­ing is a high-pow­ered pro­duc­tiv­i­ty tip,

Giv­ing every hour a job typ­i­cal­ly lets you make much more effi­cient use of your time…it allows you to sched­ule work for the time where it makes the most sense.”

2. Consider a boost

Allo­cate demand gen­er­a­tion bud­get to ampli­fy the reach of posts. Paid post pro­mo­tion with tar­get­ing para­me­ters increas­es view­ers, allow­ing B2B mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions to engage with qual­i­fied leads and pro­mote con­tent resources. Boost­ing posts on social media can offer many mar­ket­ing ben­e­fits, includ­ing:

  • Increas­ing your expo­sure and engage­ment
  • Grow­ing your fol­low­ing
  • Build­ing a list to remar­ket to site vis­i­tors

3. Splinter your content

B2B deci­sion-mak­ers are some­times over­whelmed by the amount of dig­i­tal con­tent on social media. Avoid get­ting lost in the crowd by splin­ter­ing your con­tent. In oth­er words, break off salient infor­ma­tion into more bite-sized chunks, rather than ask­ing the read­er to con­sume an entire 2,000 post to get any­thing out of it.

Pull out quotes, stats or graph­ics when you share links to con­tent resources on social media. Don’t for­get to splin­ter con­tent from your organization’s main web­site pages, not just your blog and oth­er con­tent resources.

4. Create educational, entertaining content

High-qual­i­ty edu­ca­tion that enter­tains and engages is among the most effec­tive B2B mar­ket­ing strate­gies for social media in 2018. Dawn Papan­drea, writer, edi­tor and brand sto­ry­teller, says,

Few would argue about the pow­er and val­ue of edu­ca­tion­al con­tent – whether a blog, an e-newslet­ter, a white paper, or a how-to video. How­ev­er, some brands have tak­en this con­cept fur­ther by devel­op­ing full-fledged class­es and cur­ric­u­la for their audi­ences.”

While e-Cours­es aren’t a neces­si­ty or the right fit for every orga­ni­za­tion, brands should take inspi­ra­tion from B2B orga­ni­za­tions who pro­duce high-qual­i­ty, edu­ca­tion­al con­tent.

5. Make your content actionable

Your social media strat­e­gy and con­tent should focus on offer­ing pre­scrip­tive guid­ance to audi­ence mem­bers. Not only will this deliv­er val­ue, but it can also posi­tion your brand and employ­ees as thought lead­ers.

One B2B brand that excels at offer­ing pre­scrip­tive guid­ance and a broad library of exper­tise is Deloitte Insights. Meghan Keaney Ander­son, Vice Pres­i­dent of Mar­ket­ing at Hub­Spot, says,

Much like some of the oth­er remark­able B2B con­tent we’ve come across, [Deloitte Inights] curates not only dif­fer­ent pieces of high­ly help­ful con­tent – but also a vari­ety of con­tent for­mats. From blog posts to web­casts, to pod­casts, [it] has a bit of every­thing.”

6. Be real

86% of mod­ern con­sumers say authen­tic­i­ty is essen­tial in decid­ing which brands to sup­port. How­ev­er, just 57% believe brands suc­ceed at cre­at­ing authen­tic con­tent.

Being authen­tic can build trust in a B2B audi­ence. Write in your own voice, but stand behind your brand, prod­uct and com­pa­ny val­ues. Lis­ten to oth­ers and engage con­sis­tent­ly. Focus on your audi­ence above self-pro­mo­tion to devel­op a real, lik­able pres­ence.

7. Be genuinely helpful

The focus of B2B social media mar­ket­ing should be to solve your audience’s pain points and prob­lems. Your con­tent should be rel­e­vant and pro­vide val­ue in for­mats that are easy-to-con­sume.

One mar­keter who suc­ceeds in cre­at­ing gen­uine­ly help­ful con­tent for social media is Neil Patel. He writes that the focus of his video con­tent is:

Great, help­ful con­tent that solves a user prob­lem. For exam­ple, ‘how to do on-page SEO in 5 min­utes.’ “

8. Stay on the platform

Post your con­tent on the social media plat­form itself, as opposed to post­ing links to oth­er sites or plat­forms. Each social media post should pro­vide stand-alone val­ue with­out an audi­ence mem­ber need­ing to click-through to your com­pa­ny web­site. Social media plat­forms gear news feed algo­rithms toward native con­tent, so this is an impor­tant fac­tor in max­i­miz­ing the reach of your posts.

9. Share others’ content

Shar­ing con­tent authored by indus­try influ­encers is a pow­er­ful way to pro­vide high-qual­i­ty, curat­ed resources to your audi­ence. Scratch the back of an influ­encer and make sure they know you shared it.

10. Converse

Every day, sub­ject mat­ter experts and prospec­tive cus­tomers are hav­ing con­ver­sa­tions about your indus­try or prod­uct cat­e­go­ry. To join these con­ver­sa­tions, B2B mar­keters need to know where to find them and active­ly lis­ten:

  • Use key­words for social lis­ten­ing
  • Devel­op a list of influ­encers to fol­low
  • Join indus­try-rel­e­vant groups
  • To max­i­mize your con­ver­sa­tions, adopt the right tech­nolo­gies for social lis­ten­ing and emu­late the cul­ture of the groups and social media net­work you’re engag­ing on.

11. Show appreciation

When influ­encers and oth­er brands share your con­tent, it’s impor­tant to be appre­cia­tive. Say “thank you,” and when pos­si­ble, rec­i­p­ro­cate with shares.

12. Plan it out

Using an edi­to­r­i­al cal­en­dar to plan con­tent mar­ket­ing and social media efforts can offer a host of ben­e­fits to B2B mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions. The advan­tages of using a social media cal­en­dar for plan­ning include:

  • A roadmap to con­sis­tent, var­ied post­ing
  • A big pic­ture view to map posts to cam­paign themes and strat­e­gy
  • The abil­i­ty to piv­ot and refine strat­e­gy based on cam­paign results
  • The oppor­tu­ni­ty to align social media mes­sag­ing with mul­ti-chan­nel mar­ket­ing cam­paigns
  • In addi­tion to these high-lev­el ben­e­fits, an edi­to­r­i­al cal­en­dar can enable B2B mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions to link improve­ments in social media mar­ket­ing met­rics to spe­cif­ic post­ing actions.

13. Use your camera

Visu­al con­tent, includ­ing videos and imagery, can be high­ly engag­ing for­mats for social media posts. Plan to shoot video and take pic­tures at brand or indus­try events. Pro­vid­ing a behind-the-scenes peek of employ­ees at work or engaged in office out­ings to your audi­ence can human­ize your brand.

14. Leave recommendations

When you’re block­ing time each week for social media mar­ket­ing, allot an hour for writ­ing sin­cere rec­om­men­da­tions for col­leagues, peers and cus­tomers on LinkedIn. While indi­vid­u­als who receive a rec­om­men­da­tion may rec­i­p­ro­cate, this is a strong way to build and main­tain exist­ing pro­fes­sion­al rela­tion­ships in a way that reflects well on your brand.

15. Get the team on board

Turn­ing employ­ees into con­tent advo­cates can ben­e­fit both the organization’s and employee’s (per­son­al) brands. Jason Miller, Head of Con­tent and Social Media Mar­ket­ing at LinkedIn Sales & Mar­ket­ing Solu­tions EMEA, says,

Despite the fact that only 3% of employ­ees share con­tent, they gen­er­ate 30% of all con­tent engage­ment for a typ­i­cal busi­ness.”

Some plat­forms give you the abil­i­ty to share posts auto­mat­i­cal­ly on every­one on your team’s accounts. While this can con­ve­nient­ly expand con­tent expo­sure and reach, make sure to bal­ance auto­mat­ed post­ing with man­u­al team mem­ber posts.

Succeeding at B2B Social Media Marketing

There’s more to suc­cess­ful B2B social media mar­ket­ing than social sell­ing or grow­ing a fol­low­ing. One often over­looked com­po­nent of effec­tive B2B social media mar­ket­ing is build­ing authen­tic rela­tion­ships. By cre­at­ing a human, help­ful pres­ence, B2B orga­ni­za­tions can use social media to con­nect with cus­tomers, prospects and influ­encers.