It’s not easy to establish a reliable social media presence in today’s dynamic environment. But, having a consistent social media presence is imperative for all types of companies.
There are a lot of misconceptions about social media marketing and how it works for a company. Often, a company may create content, plan posts to promote it for several weeks or months, and then be frustrated when no sales are generated. In reality, B2B social media marketing takes a lot more. It takes foresight, continuity, and a sincere effort to have genuine conversations with the audience.
To succeed at B2B social media marketing, most businesses must change their attitude. This begins with a change in their perspective on specific aspects of their social media presence:
Buyers want to interact with businesses on social media
For several of the companies they deal with, this is an unexpectedly big barrier. They consider social media markting to be a more passive activity. Businesses believe that consistent posting and interesting content will be sufficient. Although this provides a solid basis for success, it takes a little more to achieve the performance that most B2B businesses want.
The bad news is that it takes time for companies to consider it and that they must be deliberate. The good news is that it isn’t too complicated. It’s important to understand that their consumers want to form genuine, long-term relationships with the brands with whom they do business. Before buying from others, customers want to get to know them. They have the opportunity thanks to social media.
Instead of focusing on sales, focus on building relationships
That said, companies must not treat social media interactions as if they were cold calls. Yes, the audience wants to buy and learn about the business through social media. However, this does not imply that they want to be followed in the conventional sales sense.
Rather than concentrating on the number of sales generated by their social media activity, companies should concentrate on the number of worthwhile relationships they have been able to establish. Direct social media sales are made to prospects with whom they have established a relationship rather than to strangers with whom they initiate a sales pitch.
Social media marketing for B2B companies is a long-term strategy
The final and perhaps most critical paradigm shift that all companies must make in order to place themselves for B2B social media marketing success is to temper the expectations about the time frame. The first results will most likely take weeks to appear, and the social media marketing presence will take months to produce impressive, measurable results.
Businesses should not be discouraged if they do not see immediate results. It takes time to establish relationships and confidence. The company has to be ready to invest into that kind of a time plan for best results.