In many aspects, social media has changed the way we live. We go to a new restaurant based on positive online reviews, interact with friends without the constraints of time or location, and can access a worldwide audience like never before. Here are a few statistics to consider:
The internet has 3.17 billion users and there are 2.3 billion active social media users.
91% of retail brands use two or more social media channels.
Internet users have an average of 5.54 social media accounts.
Social media users have risen by 176 million in the last year.
1 million new active mobile social users are added every day - that’s 12 each second.
Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp handle 60 billion messages a day.
With so many messages, images, and advertisements on social media, how can your business-to-business (B2B) social media marketing stand out amidst the noise?
This article explains five mistakes to avoid to ensure your message is heard.
Do you have that friend on Facebook that posts a few times a day and it starts to get annoying? That one friend who uploads pictures of her morning latte, her dog Chloe, and the lunch out with friends? If comments were anonymous, you would probably be tempted to write something sarcastic. Social media marketing certainly is a balance between promoting brand awareness and not overwhelming your potential customers.
Here are some general guidelines for how often you should post from online marketer Keran Smith:
Twitter - three times a day
Facebook - no more than two posts per day
LinkedIn - one post per weekday, or 20 total posts for the month
Google+ - three posts per day
Pinterest - at least five posts per day
Instagram - one post per day
Posting anymore than the above numbers listed will cause your audience to tune out, Smith argues.
Your audience is busy and easily distracted. Therefore, your content should be relevant, consistent with your brand, interesting, and eye catching. Never post without an image and always test your links before you post. In fact, a recent survey on social media marketing best practices from B2B ratings and reviews firm Clutch, finds that videos and images perform best for companies. The content you choose to share and promote should reflect these trends - match what your audience wants to see.
If the main purpose of your social media posts is to increase brand awareness and drive traffic to your website, it’s important to consider what customers will see when they click on your link.
“Social media marketing provides tremendous opportunity to drive traffic to your B2B website. You can optimize your profiles with a detailed description of your company and a link that directs back to your site,” advises Emily Ahlbum of online marketing company Emagine.com. “It’s also important to know that social media content is now indexed by search engines. So be sure to consider each tweet or status update as a piece of content that can be optimized for search engines.”
Depending on your industry or the services you offer, your audiences’ demographics may vary vastly. Tech start-ups tend to comprise of a younger audience, while established local business owners may skew a little older. For example, the 25-34 age group is the largest age group on social media but not by much.
“Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest fall into this category. Millennials age 18-24 consist of the most users on SnapChat, Vine, and Tumblr. LinkedIn is the odd-one out, with 35-44 year olds leading the way,” explains Tyler Becker on Social Media Week.
Knowing who your audience is and where they are can save you time and money.
In this day and age of social media marketing, many times you never get to see your client face-to-face. Your calling card is your social media shares, and your storefront is your website landing page. With this in mind, consider working with a social media marketer to get the cleanest campaign with the best results. Sloppy posts, not scheduling posts, or an inconsistent message invalidates the integrity of your company and decreases viewer click through rates.
Social media marketing can be one of your best assets or your greatest struggle. Avoiding the five mistakes outlined above and reaching out for additional help can help you attain your goal of reaching more clients and generating more leads.
Eleonora Israele is a senior analyst at Clutch, where she is responsible for research on marketing software and digital agencies. Clutch is a Washington, D.C.-based research, ratings, and reviews platform for B2B services and software.