How To Create A Social Media Strategy
Social Media ROI Starts With A Social Marketing Strategy
Nearly 85% of B2B executives use social communities to research their purchase decisions. But half of marketers say that social media has not helped them improve sales. Without a strong social media strategy in place, it’s nearly impossible for B2B marketers to know whether or not social communities have impacted their bottom line.
We help B2B marketing teams level up with social media marketing using our battle-tested TABLO Community Marketing Framework. Contact us to learn more about our process, or continue reading to learn more about the three pillars of community marketing.
SOCIAL MEDIA GOALS & MISSION
First, what do you hope that social media will help your team achieve?
High-level goals for community marketing could be building brand awareness, increasing brand loyalty, driving website traffic, lead generation, or customer service. Document your goals, and assign measurable objectives.
Once you have your community marketing goals, it’s time to define your social media mission. Why do your communities exist? Why would your potential customers want join them? How will you facilitate the conversation so that your communities add value during the Buyer Journey?
If my firm provides water filtration solutions, and my target audience is the Facilities Director, how could my social communities be a valuable part of their professional lives? Well…in any number of ways. My communities might be full of:
- Educational content from industry experts on the value of water filtration
- Engaging discussion on water management best practices across industries
- Empowering tools and resources that help get the job done faster
Find the thing that makes your community unique, apply that perspective to helping your target audience answer their questions at each stage of the Buyer Journey, and you have your Mission.
THE THREE PILLARS TO A SUCCESSFUL B2B SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY…
Every B2B community should strive to Educate its members. This is an extension of the firm’s content marketing strategy. What are your commercial insights, and how do you provide that expertise to your audiences across your social communities?
And each social community may be relevant at a different stage of the Buyer Journey. This means that the purpose of education within the community might be to accelerate Consideration and Comparison by helping your audience learn more about different solution categories, or about the features and benefits within a category. Or it might be to push the prospect to Evaluation and Decision by educating them on the best way to roll out your solution across their organization.
Education is the first pillar to any successful B2B social media strategy, and it should work hand-in-hand with your team’s content marketing strategy.
Need help figuring out how to educate your communities?
Once you’ve figured out how you’ll educate your communities, then it’s time to Engage. This is the true power of social media platforms – the ability to connect one-on-one and create a dialog with your prospects, customers, end users, influencers, and advocates.
How will you drive that conversation with your audience?
We’ve found that everyone (including your audience) has only five subconscious motivations that drive engagement, and we have an apt acronym for it: FREUD.
- Fame: make me famous, recognize me, make me feel special.
- Riches: give me something of value, reward me for my time.
- Emotion: pull my heartstrings, make me feel joy, fear, sadness, anger.
- Utility: give me resources, be invaluable, make me invaluable to my team.
- Distraction: have some fun, give a moment of relevant distraction.
These five motivators drive big time engagement within social communities. Which of them speak to your buyers? Are some motivators more effective than others at accelerating the stages of your Buyer Journey?
Engagement is the second pillar to any successful B2B social media strategy, and how you drive engagement should be tailored to your audiences.
Need help figuring out how to engage your communities?
After you’ve covered education and engagement in your community marketing strategy, you must Empower your audiences to complete the puzzle.
How can you empower your prospects to move to the next stage of the Buyer Journey?
You can empower them with tools and resources. You can empower them by giving them lots of ways to share your content with their network. You can empower them by integrating your social communities and your customer support services. You can empower them with case studies and free trials so that they can build a business case.
At the end of the day, empowerment is about sending your buyers to areas of your digital presence that encourage them to raise their hand and take action. A landing page, a demo page, a Contact Us page, a customer support page.
Empowerment is about giving your buyers what they need to learn and purchase, and giving your customers what they need to maintain loyalty and build advocacy.
Need help figuring out how to empower your communities?
Take the time, energy, and resources to craft a strong social media strategy. You wouldn’t go into battle without a gameplan, and you shouldn’t launch a marketing channel without a strategy.
And if these three pillars seem daunting, fear not! Our team is more experienced than anyone in the world at helping B2B firms create the right strategy for your social communities.
Get in touch with us to talk about building a Community Marketing Strategy.
Explore some of our resources.
Scorecards, Trend Reports, Checklists, and more, to help you build trust, generate leads, and drive revenue through Content & Community Marketing.