We are now heavily involved in social media activity on behalf of clients. In fact, this part of our business has grown considerably over the last three years as B2B organisations in the industrial, technical and IT sectors have woken up to the importance of social media.
Once viewed as the reserve of large consumer brands, there is growing recognition that B2B organisations have much to gain from setting up their own social media networks; engaging with customers and reaping the benefits before their competitors do.
Our clients use social media to support the sales process, to bind customers more closely to their organisations and to handle customer queries. And as more trade and business media embrace channels such as Twitter, we can target journalists with news and announcements, and identify additional opportunities for media exposure.
To answer a common question; yes, some social media are more appropriate for B2B use than others. Twitter? Of course. YouTube? Yes. Facebook? Maybe. We recommend that clients fully exploit LinkedIn – especially Groups and Discussions – to create a presence on an increasingly influential conduit to customers, routes to market, and internal audiences.
Of course, social media is a relatively new area of marketing activity and the technology that supports it is changing all the time. There are plenty of pitfalls and many organisations have discovered that a mistake is easily made.
At best a mistake might mean a missed opportunity. At worst it can damage to your brand and reputation.
So, while the internet is awash with tips on social media success, our first blog addresses some common mistakes that are easy to make. Consider this list carefully and see if you are guilty also…
- NOT HAVING CLEAR OBJECTIVES
Undertaking social media activity for its own sake without a clear idea of what is trying to be achieved.
- VIEWING SOCIAL MEDIA AS SEPARATE
Instead of treating it as simply another channel and an extension of what you are already doing.
- NOT HAVING A POLICY ON USE
Letting internal audiences use social media without any guidance or understanding of acceptable or preferred usage.
- NOT INVOLVING INTERNAL AUDIENCES
Keeping it ‘hidden’ in marketing, instead of using it as a tool that benefits the whole business.
- TRYING TO OWN EVERYTHING
Creating your own groups, platforms and networks instead of tapping into the ones that are already used.
- PRODUCING POOR CONTENT
Writing that doesn’t consider the audience being targeted – or the requirements of the channel.
- DROPPING IN AND OUT
Engaging with audiences only when you can instead of devoting regular time and effort to communicate.
- MEANINGLESS METRICS
Measuring activity in terms of “follows”, “likes” and “retweets”; but not terms that mean something to the business.
- EXPECTING INSTANT RESULTS
Instead of recognising that it takes time to get social media off the ground and working properly.
- TRYING TO DO EVERYTHING
Instead of choosing the channels that work best with your business and are of most interest to your audiences.