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Social Media and Brand Awareness

Social MediaThere isn’t just one key to success for a company, no matter the size. Success is usually a product of persistence, best practices, and even a little (or a lot of) luck. One very important key to success is creating brand awareness. We’ve talked about brand awareness several times on the Lead Liaison blog, but today we’ll be talking about the relationship between social media and brand awareness.

An Argument for Social Media for B2B Companies

I’m sure I don’t need to go into why brand awareness is essential for any company, especially a small-to-medium sized company. When another business has a need that pertains to your line of work, you want that company to think of you immediately. Brand awareness is the result of nurturing and education, both of which can be done via social media in small, easy-to-consume spoonfulls.

Why should B2B companies use social media to promote brand awareness? Example: in my off time, I occasionally (okay – more than occasionally) scroll social media. Even though I’m not “on the clock”, I’m still thinking about to-do lists, and I am aware of what I am consuming. I’ve usually got an even clearer head because I’m in more of a relaxed state of mind. When I see advertisements for tools that I could use at work, it doesn’t make me cringe. It makes me think. During the workday, I’m so busy with tasks and emails that I rarely stop what I’m doing to assess the situation and see if I could be doing anything better or more efficiently. That’s not good – but it’s fact.

What Should Be Different About a B2B Company’s Social Media Efforts?

As with most B2B marketing, it’s more about education than hard selling. Remember, the goal with your social media is brand awareness – not immediate sales. You want to help businesses learn to trust your company’s name as a resource. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be the first company that comes to mind when their need comes to fruition. Because of this, your social media marketing should not focus on selling, but rather on education. Share best practices, tips & tricks, or links to informative articles (yours or others’).

Where Should You Focus?

Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are some of the most active social media sites. However, LinkedIn Groups can be extremely effective for B2B social media marketing, as well as a YouTube channel. As an introvert, I much prefer to skim YouTube videos about a software that I’m interested in purchasing, rather than speak to a salesperson on the phone.

But, it’s not necessarily where you focus your social media efforts. It’s more about how you communicate. A recent study from The MarketingProfs, The State of Social Media Marketing, shows that B2C and B2B social media marketers are mostly using the same social media approach, in terms of which platforms they utilize. The differences instead lie in how social media is used, not which social media are used.

In social media, small companies can act like big ones. Sure, there are paid advertising options for most social media sites. However, the reach is essentially the same, depending on the amount of followers a company has. Because of this, we see that social media activity does not vary much between large and small companies.

Social Media for Brand Awareness

The message is simple. B2B companies should use social media to help educate and nurture members of the marketplace. If done properly, that brand awareness will lead to increased trust, which leads to increased sales. This is a modern strategy for communicating with your potential clients, and it’s time to get on board!

Interested in how Lead Liaison helps you manage your social media presence? Contact a representative today for a free demonstration!

Social Media Monitoring

*Editor’s Note: The views & opinions expressed in any guest post on our site are those of the guest author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of Lead Liaison. 

Today’s guest post comes from our friends over at the Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Are you a social media manager or someone with limited experience wanting to educate yourself? This article is for you!

New posts, images, videos, articles: Those are all great elements of social media. But if you don’t monitor what’s happening on your social media accounts—often called social media listening—you may be missing out on key insights.

Those conversations, emotions, and connections offer clues about what your clients are thinking and feeling. You can’t just check Facebook; you must keep tabs on every platform that you choose to participate in, and you must make those check-ins a regular business function. To do otherwise is to lose the potential to make key adjustments as needed.

Want more insights into social media listening? This graphic is for you!

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Marketing Guru Covers: Social Posting and Targeting

Social Media TargetingIt’s time to think about social posting and targeting. There’s a common misconception that all social networks are the same. Companies think they need to target the same people, regardless of the network, but that isn’t the case. You need to adopt a unique strategy for each network. Some networks cater to B2B or B2C markets, and some focus on specific age groups. Understand the various demographics so you can get more out of social networking.

Facebook

Facebook is mainly geared toward B2C marketing, although some B2B marketing does take place on the site. In fact, this is the top social network for B2C marketing since consumers spend most of their online social time on the site. That makes Facebook an excellent place for businesses to connect with their consumers, especially since everyone uses the site. It’s popular with people of both genders and all ages.

Still, B2B companies use the site to show off their human sides. If you run a B2B business, don’t be afraid to use the network. You just don’t need to post every day, like B2C businesses do. Post once a week instead.

Twitter

Like Facebook, Twitter is available for both B2B and B2C marketers, but it is most appealing to B2C marketers. The site is popular with college-educated people under 50, so this is a good option for people who are trying to reach a specific target market. Use this social network to educate people and to provide interesting and compelling news. It’s also a great place to make connections with other folks in your industry.

Google+

Google+ is one of the most interesting social networks out there. While it hasn’t caught on as much as Google would like, most companies and people have Google+ pages. When companies sign up for Google Places and people sign up for Gmail accounts, they create Google+ pages. This has created a huge opportunity for marketers to reach their targets.

As of right now, 59 percent of Google+ users are men, and around a third of them are between the ages of 25 and 34. However, if businesses start to use the tool that is in front of them, there is no telling what will happen with this social network.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the B2B marketer’s haven. The network is full of professionals, and you can use it to target them and get immediate results. This is the only social network where the majority of the users are 30-64. Educational content works well on this network. Use your advertising space to teach others about your industry.

Social networks provide B2B and B2C marketers with countless opportunities. Don’t put all of your marketing efforts into a single network. Branch out so you can reap multiple rewards.

See how Lead Liaison’s software helps you manage and track your social media efforts here.

 

Marketing Guru Covers: What to Post on Social Media

social media

It seems like some people have it all figured out when it comes to social media and others are sitting on the sidelines, wishing they could get some “likes” and “shares”. There is a good chance you’re one of the people on the sidelines, but that can change. You just need to know what to post on social media, and you can move up the ranks and become a power user.

Use Images

Visual content is all the rage right now. In fact, social media posts with images have an engagement rate that is 650 percent higher than posts without images. Any kind of image is great, but infographics are the best. Users share infographics three times as much as they share other visuals. There are tons of online resources for creating infographics. Use a resource like Piktochart to build your infographic and then post it on your social media accounts.

Use Videos

Videos are another great way to boost your engagement across the board. Video resonates in a way that the written word doesn’t, so you need to add some video to your social media campaign to make it memorable. There are many ways to do this. Tie your YouTube channel into your social media profiles and use Facebook video. Also, consider adding a Vine account to your Twitter profile. Twitter owns Vine, so it is easy to integrate the two. Then, you can create some short video loops that resonate with users.

Now that you know what to post, let’s look at what you should avoid.

What to Avoid

Constant promotion is the number one mistake that brands make on social media. People want some kind of value from your page. If you can’t provide it, they will go elsewhere and perhaps even unfollow you. You can plug your brand every once in awhile, but only after you provide a lot of value.

You also need to avoid providing the same type of content over and over again. As you know, images and videos are great for your social media strategy. However, don’t post 10 infographics in a row. You have to mix it up.

Your social media presence is very important for your brand. Keep these tips in mind when posting to your accounts. It doesn’t matter if you’re on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or one of the other networks. You need a solid strategy if you’re going to move ahead.

See how Lead Liaison’s software helps you manage and track your social media efforts here.

The Marketing Guru Covers: What are the benefits of social media marketing?

social media marketing

Social media is everywhere. Many companies are leveraging their social media presence to build a more personal relationship with their audience. But, how effective is it – really? What are the benefits of social media marketing?

Become Recognizable & Relatable

Social media marketing allows you to increase your online presence. By increasing your brand recognition, you also gain more loyal customers. If they see your name over and over again, you become a part of their lives. You become more familiar to them. You also become more humanized.

What’s even more valuable, is that each customer interaction is an opportunity to show your level of customer service. It’s a public, 1:1 interaction that other people can see, and “like” (or dislike, so beware!). In an article posted by B2C about social media marketing, they reference a statistic originally reported by Forbes: 71% of consumers who receive a quick response on social media say they are more likely to recommend that brand to other people. And we all know that the most solid form of referrals is word-of-mouth.

Convert more leads/prospects by increasing inbound traffic

Inbound marketing is the best way to build up your list of prospects and convert leads. Every time you post something, you open yourself up to opportunities for prospects to click your link, interact with your website, and perhaps even fill out a form or put in their email address. Every post is a new opportunity for someone to be guided back to your website. With tools like Lead Liaison’s Marketing Automation platform, you can post to multiple social media accounts with the push of one button.

Save money

Compared to other marketing channels, social media posting is relatively inexpensive and time efficient. It’s trackable and measurable content, which adds to it’s value. It can be free, or you also have the option of using paid social media to give your content a significant boost. MCG Consulting Group lays it out like this, “boosting or sponsoring posts on a page with, let’s say, 20.000 likes, the average paid reach can be close to 40% (about 8,000 people) vs. the 2% organic reach, with an investment of $5 per post.  Even if you decide to boost every single post, posting on a frequency of 16 to 20 times per month with an average of likes of 500 to 800 per post, the reach could go up to 5,000,000 people who could have seen your posts during that specific period, with an investment equal or below $150.”

 

How to Make Your Mobile Marketing Work Harder

This article was posted as a Guest Blog Post relating to Salesforce.com.

Does your mobile marketing match your consumers’ use of their devices? If you’re like most companies, the answer is “Probably not.”

There are different types of mobile users—regular, super, addicts, all of whom can be affected by mobile marketing in some way. How you reach them depends in part on the individual setups they have—push notifications, for example. Of course, push notifications equals more times opening an app. But push notifications can’t and shouldn’t be random. They should be designed to create an experience and action, as should SMS marketing.

The majority of customers wouldn’t mind more contact from brands using SMS marketing. Those messages get the attention of customers in a crowded world, and they often result in very quick review of a message.

There is a great gap between how much time we spend on our phones, and how much (or little) companies are investing in mobile advertising.

How important is mobile marketing

 

How can you make your mobile marketing work harder and smarter? To learn more about the potential in mobile marketing and the various ways to engage customers, check out Marketing Cloud’s article Mobile Marketing Examples to Energize Your 2016 Campaigns.

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Enliven Your Social Media Presence with These Social Media Strategies

Enliven Your Social Media Presence with These Social Media StrategiesSometimes, it can be a challenge for a marketing department to keep a business’s social media presence engaging and relevant in order to be an active tool for generating and encouraging leads to convert. It can be even more challenging if your business isn’t providing a service that is normally looked at as being a “sexy business”. However, no matter what industry you’re in, a creative marketing team should be able to craft a social media presence that adheres to your brand values while being an engaging advocate for your business. If you’re wondering how to do that, take cues from other business’s social media strategies in order to enliven your social media presence.

Look for Successful Examples in Strange Places

If you’re struggling to find a good example of successful social media strategies, start with some of the big boys. Sports teams have large, diverse audiences that want constant updates on what’s going on with their team. Every major football, basketball and baseball team works to keep their fans engaged and entertained even in the off season. How do they do it? Sports teams work hard to make sure their posts are consistently funny or very relevant, while always broad enough to appeal to an extremely diverse market. In addition, they also show a lot of gratitude for their audience. Every major team’s social media is dotted with posts in appreciation of their fan base, which is an easy attitude for any business to adopt.

Look for Examples in Parallel Markets

Another great way to get good inspiration is to find a parallel market to your own and see what those businesses are doing. See if the leaders of a field you’re not competitive with are doing anything exciting and take notes. Another great, low cost and very easy way to gain access to a market that you may not have much interest in is to engage one of the larger figures in that market via social media. Your Twitter or Facebook post may show up to a large group of individuals who otherwise would have no reason to think about your company.

Take Advantage of Marketing Automation Tools

Using tools provided by marketing automation software companies such as Lead Liaison, use integrated social media tools to schedule your social media posts to fit easily within a long-term, large-scale social media campaign. Take all the guesswork and complicated timing out of rolling out a social media campaign by scheduling posts months in advance to deliver company announcements and messages on time and on point. Not that the ability to schedule your posts should distract from running a dynamic and engaged social media presence, but it can certainly help organize everything.

By using these techniques and marketing automation tools, you should be able to find a way to enliven your social media presence in no time. Visit Lead Liaison’s marketing automation resource blog to learn more about using your social media presence to benefit your business.

How to Use Social Selling and Marketing Automation

 How to Use Social Selling and Marketing AutomationIn a modern landscape of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, social selling is a vital skill to integrate into any marketing strategy. However, concurrently managing different social networks and sticking to a consistent message can be daunting. Marketing automation tools such as Lead Liaison have many different functions that can help your marketing team keep everything organized. Read on to learn how your company can use social selling and marketing automation to maximize exposure of your promotional materials and convert leads into customers.

Obstacles to Social Selling

There are a couple important obstacles that can limit your marketing team’s social selling efforts. One of the most basic is that while nearly everyone in the modern business world interacts with social networking, the way that your consumers interact with these platforms is constantly changing. Different leads use different social networking platforms, individual platforms are used in different ways, and different consumers use different devices to interact with those networks. Even if you’ve crafted an effective social selling strategy, a large part of your potential leads or new leads may not respond to your content – simply because they aren’t noticing it.

How can your marketing team cover all of the different social networks, constantly updating and double checking and interacting with customers, all while developing and implementing a coherent and compelling marketing strategy? Do you need to hire a whole new social media department?

Not if you take advantage of marketing automation software. Below are some of the ways you can use social selling and marketing automation to streamline and improve your company’s social media presence.

Scheduling

One of the biggest advantages that software automation technology can deliver to your marketing team and your company is the ability to schedule social media posts. This means that you can plan and implement a long-term social media campaign that will be unveiled over several weeks or even months across multiple platforms. This takes a lot of the day-to-day pressure off your marketing team, who no longer have to babysit every tweet, and is an invaluable tool to help make sure that your message stays consistent across all social media platforms. You can even help improve your company’s social media profile by clustering relevant posts around industry events such as a trade show, giving you maximum exposure at the perfect time.

Social Intelligence

Another great feature that can help you use social selling and marketing automation together is the social intelligence function built into Lead Liaison’s marketing automation tools. Social intelligence can help you gather demographic data about your leads by analyzing social media profiles. This can help you further refine your social media campaigns, open up exciting opportunities for targeted marketing, and help your marketing analyze the effectiveness of current campaigns with A/B testing.

Visit Lead Liaison’s marketing automation resource blog to learn more about how you can use social selling and marketing automation to improve your marketing campaigns and many more great marketing automation strategies.

Keep Your Social Media Current With Real-Time Event Integration

Keep Your Social Media Current With Real-Time Event IntegrationKeep your social media current with real-time event integration and you’ll start impressing your prospects. Using Lead Liaison’s powerful tools, you can quickly set up an automated schedule to maintain multiple healthy and vibrant social media profiles, greatly increasing the visibility of your company to potential leads. However, to get the most out of your social media presence it should include not only relevant details about your company, but be responsive to events and news that involves your field. Real-time event integration is a key strategy in today’s fast paced world of social media communication, and should be an essential component of your social media strategy.

If your marketing has already set up an automated schedule using Lead Liaison, then that’s good – they’ve laid the framework for a healthy social media presence. Your customers are informed of what is happening with your company, and that’s important. Real-time event integration isn’t something that exists beside a long term social media automation strategy, the two are intimately related and equals parts of one singular goal, becoming part of an active, engaged community. Let’s use the example of a trade show related to your company to see how real-time integration can reach a broader audience and stimulate new leads.

Reactive Real-Time Event Integration

If there’s an important trade show approaching in your industry, hopefully it is already being planned for as a part of your marketing team’s social media automation strategy. Announcements leading up to are a great way to demonstrate activity on various social media platforms. Once the event begins, make sure you are participating in the conversation. If you have a marketing representative attending, have them take pictures, and never forget the importance of hashtags to become part of a larger conversation. If a big announcement happens, be a part of it. Even if the announcement isn’t directly related to your company, it never hurts to be a part of the buzz.

Predictive Real-Time Event Integration

Not all real-time even integration has to be reactive, however. Your marketing team should also design posts that will go up at times when they will be seen by the largest number of potential leads and customers. By creating posts that encourage participation, such as a question about attendees’ favorite moments, a poll, or even a contest related to the show, you can engage lot of new contacts and increase your social media profile very effectively.

At the end of the day, your marketing team should be working on a real-time event integration social media strategy that is both predictive and reactive, and all of this should fall under the umbrella of your larger social media automation strategy. And make sure that all of your social media posts are landing on the appropriate platform, a 40 word tweet accompanied by a hashtag looks a lot more at home on Twitter than it does on LinkedIn.

With a little planning and an effective utilization of the social media automation tools that Lead Liaison places at your disposal, you’ll quickly see the benefits of an active social media presence. Visit our marketing automation blog to learn more about how you can get the most from your social media accounts.

Scheduling Your Social Posts Makes All The Difference

Scheduling Your Social Posts Makes All The DifferenceScheduling your social posts makes a ton of difference. In today’s landscape of digital communication, an active social media presence is essential for communicating with potential and existing customers. In order to create an active presence, however, your marketing team needs to be able to deliver quality social media content on a consistent schedule that is in line with everything else that is going on within your company. This can be difficult to do on the fly, and trying to do so can make it difficult for a marketing team to adhere to their overall strategy. In order to maximize the impact of your social media presence, you should consider scheduling your social media posts, and Lead Liaison’s social media automation tools make this a simple and straightforward process.

A Consistent Schedule Of Social Media Posts Yields Tangible Benefits

What kinds of benefits will you see after pursuing a social media post scheduling strategy? An active social media presence helps establish a connection with potential customers, and reassures your existing customers that your company is actively engaged with the services you provide. In addition, regular social media updates build an online presence by connecting not only with other users but also other businesses, giving your company a wider profile and making it visible to more potential customers. However, achieving these sorts of connections and a large presence takes time and continued engagement, all of which can be easily controlled by an automated posting schedule.

Lead Liaison provides tools that connect to all the major social media platforms, such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook, and allows you to connect multiple accounts from each service. Our intuitive software lets you quickly decide on which platform every post your marketing department creates will be shown, helping you control the voice of each account while ensuring that crucial messages are delivered at the same time across all relevant social media services. In addition, our social media post queue, called the buffer, not only lets you post essentially on auto-pilot, but will let your team know when the buffer is low, helping you ensure an uninterrupted flow of social media activity.

Make Sure Your Team Remains Engaged

While posting on a consistent schedule on various social media platforms is an important part of an effective social media strategy, don’t think it’s the whole game. A crucial part of an engaging Twitter or Facebook account is the conversation that can occur between your customers. Make sure your team is making time to respond to activity on your various social media accounts, and make sure they stay aware of what is happening in your field and the world to make sure that automated posts don’t conflict with any important events or news.

By remembering these basic tenants of social media engagement and developing a coherent, automated schedule for social media postings, you’ll quickly see increased activity on social media and awareness from your customers and community. Remember to start scheduling your social posts! Visit Lead Liaison to find out more about how we can help engage your company on social media and the many other ways we can help automate your marketing capabilities.