In a sea of information, how can B2B prospects notice you?
In this article, I’m considering social media process and content strategy to get people to read and follow through with a conversion in B2B marketing - hopefully beyond just a like, retweet or +1 to include actions such as signing up for a newsletter or email list, providing survey information, attending a webinar or event, or even purchasing a product and becoming a customer. I’ve identified several key things to consider.
One that should be focused on is landing pages and, in particular, forms. Forms separate leads from non-leads and have a huge impact on conversion rates and overall lead generation results. We should take a hard look at our forms and test to see if they can be further optimized. (Taylor)
How do we get people to the page with a form in the first place? Understanding customer concerns means that we can inspire action, even in under 140 characters.
One of the most effective drivers of traffic is good SEO, which relates to many things that help your site show up on page one (hopefully in the top few results) in a search engine. These include good content, tags, header text, copy length, links from other sites, URL content and checking that your site can be indexed smoothly. (Griffith)
Other top drivers include email, social media, and content marketing. “Social media is an integral part of content marketing, and to some extent, search marketing. How successful will your blogging or infographics be if no one’s following your company’s updates on social media?” (Taylor)
Social media is different than a printed work. It’s a stream of information that users dip into and out of, rarely seeing all of the messages in their feed. Therefore, posting a steady drip of information over time rather than all at once helps ensure that your content will receive the attention it deserves. However, if we simply post the same thing over and over, it will look like spam. Some ways to keep our messages fresh include implementing these style variations:
- Straight and Easy: Post Title + Link
- The Question: Ask an engaging question to stir conversation
- Cite a Fact: Share a fact or figure that is included in your post
- Share a Quote: Grab a pull-quote from your article and turn it into a social message
- Add Intrigue: Write a teaser message that grabs the attention of your readers
There’s something else that can be used to great effect for projects, and it’s a schedule. You can divide parts of a project into chunks and put them up on a physical white board or digital collaboration platform. To do: ‘this week’, and ‘next week’.
You can create a schedule for social media postings beyond that time-frame to include weeks and months further into the future as well. Here’s a simple graphic to illustrate:
Furthermore, we can leverage the relative strengths of each platform, e.g. Google+ allows for basic markdown with which we can make pretty lists, and on Twitter, we can post a photo along with our clever, short-form copy. (Moon) Also, to make following your schedule easier, you can utilize a platform such as HubSpot to automate much of your marketing effort.
There are a lot of companies doing great marketing, and we should eye-shop around to see what valuable models we could learn from. An example of a pretty effective model for capturing attention is Problem-Agitate-Solve. Basically, identify and show that you understand your audience’s problem, cause them to reflect upon it, and then offer your solution. (Farnsworth) This is a nice way to interest users enough that they will click through.
Finally, I already mentioned making a schedule, but I should also note that there is research showing that different times of day get a more enthusiastic response depending on the day of the week, the goal of your content, and the platform being used. (Hughes)
We should always be on the lookout for new, exciting truths about our audiences, and clever tools we can use to make our efforts more effective.
Farnworth, Demian. “Problem-Agitate-Solve: Best Formula for Writing Potent Web Ads”, Copybot. Web. 14 Sep. 2011.
Griffith, Tommy. “The Insanely Powerful 2017 SEO Minded Checklist (Updated)”, ClickMinded. ClickMinded, Web. 15 Feb. 2016.
Hughes, Brian. “How to Optimize Your Social Media Posting Frequency”, Social Media Week. Social Media Week, Web. 16 Mar. 2016.
Moon, Garrett. “How To Promote Your Blog With Social Media”, CoSchedule. CoSchedule, Web. 16 Dec. 2013.
Taylor, Marcus. “5 Best B2B Lead Generation Strategies (That Work in 2017)”, VentureHarbour. VentureHarbour, Web. 25 Dec. 2016.