We’re looking at business use of social media. Last week, we decided that many companies which invest in online marketing plans for most social media are missing the boat. Let’s back up and start by defining what we are talking about.
Business Marketing in general takes one of two forms. For Business-to-Consumer (B2C) your target is the individual buyer. For Business-to-Business (B2B), your target is the buying influencer – often a group of influencers for big-ticket items.
Social media comes in a thousand shapes but is similarly distinguishable. Most is group or community-based (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest) bringing together in some cases hundreds of millions of people sharing the same interests. As we pointed out last week, hoping to attract these people with a business message is fishing in the wrong pool.
To direct a business campaign to a broad social audience you have to start by dropping the sell. Community-minded social media adherents can be very zealous and will damn-and-blast any commercial intent. So, marketing overly to the FB crowd is a no-no. Be more collegial. Think support, not sell. Grab the customer’s attention, not her wallet.
Thoughtful customer support programs in community media can be extremely successful. But that wasn’t your goal. You still haven’t found the answer to finding a way to access these gazillions of people in marketing terms that will bring them into your funnel. That way is with LinkedIn.
LI was created from the beginning for professional networking. It has 346 million male and 360 million female users worldwide. Security is stricter and your content therefore safer – FB reportedly has over 90 million fake user profiles.
LI was originally structured as a high-end job database and the powers of its algos are extraordinary. With Boolean Search – AND, OR, NOT – and some search experience, you probably can find the only left-handed shepherd in Patagonia under 30 and with a Yale degree.
The other big attraction of LI to business marketing campaigns is its own multiplicity of media tools. You can pin-point paid ad campaigns as narrowly or broadly as you wish. You can build your stature as an industry leader by sharing news and content on your company page.
There are four different sections (Company Pages, Showcase Pages, LinkedIn Groups, and LinkedIn Advertising), each of which are cornerstones to the successful use of LinkedIn for Business. I would suggest you start with HubSpot’s excellent intro LinkedIn for your Business.