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Can Social Networks Work For B2B?

by Briana Campbell (@MsMatchGirl) Here’s a question for you: What’s the point of using social media tools for business-to-business marketing? Is there any point to it? Or is a total waste of time? This is something I get asked from time to time. And, after seeing the following pop into my Twitter feed recently, I Read more

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by Briana Campbell (@MsMatchGirl)

Here’s a question for you: What’s the point of using social media tools for business-to-business marketing? Is there any point to it? Or is a total waste of time?

This is something I get asked from time to time. And, after seeing the following pop into my Twitter feed recently, I felt it was a topic that would be great to address here.

Alan Berkson tweeted:

Seeing lot’s of people leading with FB corp page as primary web presence. Somehow feels like having an AOL email for your biz.

 

Alan and I went on to have an animated (Twitter) conversation about the pros and cons of using Facebook pages, really, any social, as part of the business plan for a B2B company. And, while I agree that I would never suggest that the main point of entry that the Z-team proffers to prospective clients and colleagues be a Facebook page, I still think it’s right that we have one. Other B2B brands seem to agree: Forrester is predicting B2B social media spend to hit $54 million in 2014, up from $11 million in 2009. And, hey, 41% of B2B marketers are finding business on Facebook. So there’s no reason that yours (or ours) can’t.

As marketers, it’s our job to tell the story of our company, to make others see what they ought to see, and through that attention grab, to put prospective clients and partners into the hands of our business development team. As the Head of Social Media at Zemoga, it’s up of me to find the best way to tell our story through social channels. And I firmly believe that having a voice on several channels – this blog, Twitter, Facebook – helps us to paint the picture of Zemoga in the best possible way.

Blog:

Here on From Bogota With Love, we share the story of Zemoga. We share work that we’re proud of. We share stories of our company culture, from Bogotá, New York City and beyond. We share the knowledge of our staff –social media, technology, design, user experience and more – everything’s fair game! The Z-team is leaders in its field and this is where we let everyone shine. We share our experiences using new products and our thoughts on breaking news in our techie world.

How does that work to sell the company? FBWL helps to sell Zemoga because it shows who we are. It shows prospective clients that we do amazing and innovative work and that we’re fun to work with while it’s happening. It positions our team as leaders in our field, by showing our collected knowledge. It answers questions that our clients may have – “Why should I use social media in B2B marketing?”, for instance – in an easy and shareable way. It gives a little sneak peek behind the scenes of the Zemoga process.

Twitter:

On Twitter, we share fun news, photos and, of course, links back to this blog. Like it or not, there are a lot of people getting a lot of news and info from Twitter. And there are a lot of people having interesting conversations on Twitter. For the Zemoga Twitter stream, I try and keep it fun and upbeat. I share tweets from the team in both Bogotá and NYC and “friends” around the world. On Twitter, we have conversations about infographics and innovation and other happenings in the worlds of tech and design.

How does this work to sell the company? The people we want to reach… they’re hanging out on Twitter. A lot of them are hanging out a lot of hours a day on Twitter. By keeping a steady stream of interesting and informative content, we not only show that Zemoga is part of the conversation, but that we get it. By not only joining the conversation, but adding to it, we can show our clients that not only do we know how it works but that we know how to make it work for you.

Facebook:

This is the one people seem to have trouble with in the B2B world. Facebook is a place where people hang out socially, to see pics of their friends’ kids and make comments on silly memes. Facebook is a place to see that the guy who broke your heart in high school did not age even a little bit well. And everyone – and their mother – is on it. That’s why every business wants to be on it. As we mentioned above, 41% of B2B companies are acquiring business on Facebook. That is why you should have your B2B company on Facebook. It’s why we have ours.

How does this work to sell the company? In our marketing arsenal, Facebook’s just another tool – something that helps to tell the story of Zemoga. It certainly won’t replace our website or, for that matter, be the first place that we send people to check out what we’re about. But it’s a nice piece of the puzzle. Clients, and potential clients, are on Facebook. They “like” our posts. They share our posts. They see the culture of the team through words, pictures and thought leadership posts. We’re on Facebook, because you’re on Facebook. Is it the largest point for lead generation? No. Does it help our name recognition? For sure.

Of course, all of our social presence is pointless without a larger marketing plan – both around social networks and traditional strategies. Even a company that works with other companies still needs to show you who we are. We need to take full advantage of all available avenues to get as many eyes as possible on our name and on our brand.

Every piece works in harmony to tell the story of Zemoga.

And we’re pretty sure, once you know our story, you’ll be pretty excited to work with us.

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