Is LinkedIn the best social network for B2B opportunities? What else is out there for B2B marketers to use? Well I settled down to a hazelnut Americano (incredible craving for those lately) and started to write a post as I thought we could all do with a review of the social media landscape.
I was knee-deep in research before I stumbled across “7 Targeted Social Networks Niche Marketers Should Try” and found they had outlined different networks really well. It’s more B2C than B2B but I thought it was an interesting and well-positioned post.
And finding this made me realise that there are a lot of people presenting opinions, tips and tricks on social media for marketers, and they’re likely going to do it well because they don’t get distracted by Americanos at the first hurdle.
So here is my recap of interesting things I found to help answer the question “what else is out there and should you consider it?”:
- Foursquare is not quite right for B2B marketing. It doesn’t fully deliver a compelling value-add to marketers as other platforms are starting to allow you to “check in” geographically.
- Squidoo “lenses” are built to rank highly on search engines and unlike other social platforms B2B pages look as cool as consumer ones as the blog-style format allows you tell your own story. They can also aggregate your other social media traffic onto one lens so you don’t duplicate your content.
- MySpace is still largely geared at music-focused consumers. Unless you’re in the music industry then this may not be a great fit. They also don’t have separate business pages so your page will look like a consumer page unless you mess around enough with the layout to look corporate.
- Yammer can be used internally as a network for employees to connect and is leading the charge in the new “enterprise social media” category which focuses inward, not outward.
- Pinterest is a visual medium so if you have a visual story to tell (like we do) then set up an account. Linking back to content has never been easier and there is less pressure to pin every day/week than there is to tweet and update posts on other platforms.
I’ve ignored the consumer giants (Twitter and Facebook) because you probably already have accounts there. In short:
- FB allows you to be a collection of interesting personalities (rather than a faceless, corporate behemoth) so use it for this purpose (i.e. don’t “like” your own product description on the page)
- Twitter allows you to share industry and company news instantly and succinctly so use it for this purpose (i.e. don’t get involved in a tweeting war with a celebrity on your corporate account)
And should you want a little more detail on general social media strategy for B2B marketers, this article by Michael Brenner for B2B Marketing Insider is particularly good.
Or see what the B2B Marketing Masters have to say about it.
In short, LinkedIn is making headway by changing its company pages because they can offer you the opportunity to position yourself as a company with personality (photos, updates) and credibility (recommendations, product information) to clients, prospects, vendors and employees.
In the last post of this series we’ll outline how we can get the most out of the company page. Until then, I’m sure we’ll be busy playing with all these new social toys.
Now that the series is complete, please browse our other LI series posts:
Follow our Velocity page on LI to see if we’re staying honest and following our own advice.