When you think of social media, what comes to mind? For many, it’s influencers, hashtags and likes – but in reality, it’s so much more than this. Social media is a powerful tool that (when used correctly) can harness a lot of power for your brand. From social monitoring and crisis control to general chit-chat with your beloved clients, social media allows you to interact directly with your audience and creates endless opportunities to build your brand and become established within your industry.
With all that being said, let’s jump straight into the real reason you are here: the benefits of social media for your B2B business, supported by real industry statistics.
Create the right impression
With 84% of B2B buyers saying they actively use social media to influence their purchasing decisions, it really is a ‘use it or lose it’ (or them) situation. With more consumers embracing the power of social media, it’s only natural for them to expect brands to follow the same pattern, too. With this in mind, it comes as no surprise that up to 70% of consumers say they feel more connected to brands when they are active on social media. And with 76% of consumers saying they will choose a brand over their competitors if they feel more connected to them, this channel could be more beneficial to your business than you might think.
Along with meeting consumer expectations and building awareness of your brand, using social media is also a fantastic way to improve your customer experience, being named as the preferred channel for customer care by consumers – and it doesn’t end there. Consumers who have had a positive social care experience say they are four times more likely to recommend your brand than those who haven’t, suggesting more brands should #GetSocial.
A platform for you to share your expertise, showcase your wins and build relationships with current and prospective customers; social media is a powerful communication tool you’d be foolish not to use.
Drive traffic to your website
- More than half of the global population now uses social media, so as you can imagine, there are a lot of opportunities to reach new audiences and connect with new leads. Also, by being active on social media and sharing relevant, high-quality content, you will be establishing yourself as a thought leader, raising awareness of your brand and better defining your position within the market.
With all this being said, it comes as no surprise that social media is a top source of referral traffic for many B2B businesses, with 75% of marketers using social media saying it has increased traffic to their site. But, something that may shock you a bit more is that research from Shareholic found social media brings in almost as much referral traffic as search – pretty impressive, right?
Opportunities, leads and sales
- Not only can social media help boost your sales through building your brand, it is also a great place to generate leads (and cheaply, too). Let’s look at LinkedIn – the Facebook of the business world – a platform full of people who are hungry to improve their business, and the source of 80% of B2B social media leads – pretty impressive, right? Home to over 40 million decision-makers, it’s no surprise that LinkedIn leads the way for B2B social media marketing, but it certainly isn’t the be-all and end-all.
Hot on the heels of LinkedIn is Twitter, with 86% of B2B marketers saying they have used the platform organically in the last year; this is followed closely by Facebook, with 83% of B2B marketers using the platform.
Of course, the relevance of each network will depend completely on the industry in which your company operates, but one thing remains certain: social media has the power to not only generate more leads but to help improve sales, too. With more than 50% of marketers who have implemented a social media strategy reporting an increase in sales, why not give it a go? It is free, after all.
Improve your SEO
- We mentioned earlier that social media is a great way to drive referral traffic to your site, but did you know it can help increase organic search traffic, too? If you are familiar with SEO (search engine optimisation), you will have likely heard of people referring to off-page ranking factors. If not, this simply refers to factors outside of your website that impact your rankings within the SERPs (search engine results pages), with the main goal being to increase the relevance, authority and credibility of your site.
Your social media presence is thought to impact your SEO as it helps to increase brand exposure, improve your online presence, drive organic traffic to your site, enhance your brand reputation and provide backlinks to your content.
Reach new audiences with targeted ads
We’re all aware of paid ads, promoted posts and sponsored content – but are they worth it? In short, yes. If you understand your audience and know which channels to use, social media can bring countless new opportunities; with multiple advertising formats and targeting strategies offered, there really is something for everyone – and it’s affordable, too.
With 72% of B2B marketers who use paid distribution channels opting for paid social media/promoted posts (making it by far the most popular paid content distribution channel), the numbers really do speak for themselves.
(Bonus) Finding your Kim Kardashian
Although not explicitly a benefit of social media, the two are so closely linked, it seemed only fair that influencers (aka the celebrities of the social media world) received an honourable mention on this list.
Typically, when people hear the term ‘influencer’, they think Kardashians, Love Island winners or footballers – but it doesn’t end there. Influencers exist in every industry (yes, even B2B); they are essentially just people who hold an incredible amount of trust, credibility, and of course, influence within a certain sector. They are the masters of social media, so naturally, the best place to identify, research and build relationships with them is the channel itself – meaning you need to be active if you want to form profitable partnerships.
Not only can they help promote your brand to their loyal (and highly relevant) following, they also have the power to drive action, enhance your brand credibility and significantly increase your reach and engagement levels. Oh, and of course, being the wizards of social media, it is only right that the content they will produce for you is the best of the best – and bonus points: you can use it again and again!
After reading the above, it probably comes as no surprise that 95% of B2B marketers now use social media marketing in some form – making it the most widely used content type. So, do you really want to risk losing out to your competitors by sticking to traditional channels? Head over to our social media marketing page to find out more about how we can help you create a strategy that delivers results.