Many years ago, industrial companies saw social media marketing as a waste of time.
But with over 3.8 billion social media users, it’s a strategy no business can afford to miss out on. There’s one thing we can all agree on: your ideal buyers are on social media today.There’s one thing we can all agree on: your ideal buyers are on social media today. Click To Tweet
Having known this, how can you take advantage of social media channels to achieve your business goals? Put simply, you need to understand the fundamentals of social media marketing for industrial companies.
In this guide, you’ll learn how to market your industrial company and see some inspiring examples. Let’s begin.
Types of social media marketing
If you’re running social media campaigns today, there are two main approaches you can take. These are:
Organic social media marketing
These are posts on your social media profiles to reach and connect with your audience. For these posts, there are no payments involved. Therefore, your results will depend on the size of your audience and their engagement with your posts.
Paid social media marketing
Many years ago, you could achieve good results through organic posts. Nowadays though, the story has changed.
Social media companies have implemented algorithms to reduce the reach of organic posts. Therefore, paid social media is the most effective way to reach a large number of your ideal audience.
Beyond that, paid social media marketing has many options to explore depending on your social media goals.
Of course, it’s rare to use a single approach for your social media campaigns. So, you’ll likely have to combine both for optimum results.
Through these approaches, you can create demand for your products and capture already existing demand. Here are 7 best practices to follow for effective social media marketing for industrial companies:
1. Define your social media goals
What results do you want to achieve on social media? After all, you’re not just on social media because your competitors are there.
You have to define the goals for each social media campaign you execute. Some common social media marketing goals include:
- Increasing brand awareness
- Acquiring website traffic
- Acquiring leads
- Increasing sales
But even when you set these goals, you have to ensure they’re SMART. This means they have to be:
For example, a SMART social media goal for your industrial company could be: acquire 70 manufacturing leads on LinkedIn within a month.
This goal has to be relevant to your business operations. Likewise, you should be capable of achieving the goal.
By setting relevant goals, you can set the overall direction for your social media campaigns. Consequently, you’re likely to achieve better results.
2. Identify the best social media channels for your audience
While you want to reach your audience, being on all the social media platforms isn’t the right approach for the best results. Because your ideal audience dwells on some channels more than others.
Instead, you have to identify the social media channels your ideal buyers spend their time on. Focusing on these channels will improve your chances of reaching them effectively.
Below are 5 popular social media channels for industrial companies:
For industrial and other B2B companies, LinkedIn is one of the most effective channels.
This is no surprise since LinkedIn is a platform for professionals. Based on this premise, many professionals and executives are open to business-related messages on the channel.
On LinkedIn, you can use the search bar to connect with professionals that fit into your buyer persona. It’s easy to search for companies and positions.
Beyond that, you need to publish helpful content and contribute to industry groups. For example, Boeing posts essential information about its airplanes and employees on its LinkedIn page:
This is a platform where people receive updates and interact with others. On this platform, you can provide useful information and tips about your industry.
Furthermore, you can contribute to discussions about your industry through hashtags and comments.
As the largest social media network, you’ll find a huge number of your prospects on the social media network. You can create a company page to deliver value to your audience and build trust.
Likewise, Facebook allows you to run targeted ads at users who fit the details of your buyer persona. One of the largest aircraft manufacturers, Airbus, publishes about its airplanes and technologies on its Facebook page:
READ THIS: How to Create an Effective Facebook B2B Marketing Strategy
As the second largest search engine and the largest video network, this is a channel you can’t ignore. During their research process, prospects use YouTube.
Beyond that, they also search for industry-related knowledge to improve their work. Showing up to these prospects at the right time can give you an edge in converting them to customers later.
On its YouTube page, Caterpillar has playlists about equipment and the solutions they provide.
As the second-largest social media network, Instagram is an image-based social network. While millennials dominate it, you have to note that millennials now significantly impact B2B purchases.
On this platform, you can publish images or videos of your product in action and take them behind the scenes. With this, it’s easy to connect with your audience and capture leads.
On its Instagram page, General Electric posts its products, achievements, and recognizes employees.
Of course, you don’t have to start with all these channels. You can start campaigns with one or two and then track your results over time.
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3. Create a social media content calendar
To obtain your intended results on social media, you need to publish consistently. Frankly, it’s almost impossible to see long-term results by only participating sporadically.
But being consistent is easier said than done. One of the best ways to become consistent is to create a social media content calendar.
With a social media calendar, you can plan out weeks or even months of social media activities on your accounts. Here, you can specify different social media channels and the tasks you’ll perform on them.With a social media calendar, you can plan out weeks or even months of social media activities on your accounts.} Click To Tweet
If you find it challenging to create a social media content calendar, you’ll find templates online you can edit. One tool that provides such templates is CoSchedule.
4. Publish valuable and engaging social media content
At the end of the day, your social media marketing strategy should revolve around providing value. What do we mean by that?
The pieces of information you provide must solve a problem or make their work better. To produce media more efficiently, you can use tools like Canva and InVideo to create images and videos, respectively.
Now, considering your audience’s appetite for content, you can’t create enough content to satisfy them. This means you need to feature content from other sources apart from what you create.Now, considering your audience’s appetite for content, you can’t create enough content to satisfy them Click To Tweet
So, the easy way to have consistent social media content is to use your created content and curated content from other sources. You can use a tool like Curata to get curated content at regular intervals.
Beyond publishing content, you also need to specify the type of content you publish. After all, your audience doesn’t want to see every post promoting a product.
An example is 50% informational content, 30% curated content, and 20% promotional content. You can be as flexible as possible with the formula based on your audience.
Apart from content published on your company page, employee advocacy can even be more effective. According to LinkedIn’s executive editor, Daniel Roth, a company’s employees have 10 times the company’s social media followers.
Therefore, encourage your employees to post about their work on social media. This attracts more trust from your audience.
5. Publish at the right time
While you want to publish valuable content, what’s the point if your audience doesn’t see it? Apart from publishing on the right channels, you also want to publish at times they’re online.
With just a simple Google search, you’ll find studies about the best times to post on social media. In a Hootsuite study, they found the best time to post on social media is 10:00 am on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
However, the best time to post is not an exact science since audiences vary. So, you have to observe your posts and engagement at different times.
To make publishing easy, you can use a social media management tool. All you have to do is set up your posts and the time to publish.
Some tools even suggest the best time to post based on your past posts and engagement. For instance, Hootsuite has this feature.
Likewise, if you use HubSpot for content management, you’ll have access to the social media scheduling feature. In addition, you can add images to your posts and shorten links.
Furthermore, you can experiment by publishing posts at different times and tracking engagement. In a nutshell, you need to find the times your followers are online and publish around those times.
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6. Interact with your audience
On social media, one of the most important rules is to be social. This means after publishing your posts, you have to interact with your audience.
Interaction with your audience includes replying to their comments and questions, resharing their posts, and more.
Apart from that, you should interact with other industry accounts. If you use a social media management tool, the interactions become easier.
This is because these tools allow you to manage all your social media accounts in one place.
7. Track your social media campaign results
Once you define these metrics, you can track them with different tools. If you use a social media management tool, you’ll find metrics in the analytics section.
And if you use HubSpot to schedule your social media posts, you’ll get metrics that show your performance. You also have the option to save these reports for further analysis.
If you’re running paid ads on social media channels, you’ll see the necessary metrics too. Tracking your performance helps you understand whether you’ve succeeded or failed in achieving your goals. In addition to that, these metrics can provide insights to improve your future campaigns.
Social media has become a great platform industrial companies can use to reach their ideal buyers. However, getting social media marketing right goes beyond just publishing random posts and hoping for the best.
Whether you’ve been running social campaigns or you’re just starting, use these tips to get better results. And if all these look too challenging, you can reach out to us to run for Social media marketing for industrial companies.