A MarketingProfs report states that “Across the various platforms, brands cited the following adoption levels: Facebook (87%), Twitter (83%), LinkedIn (76%), YouTube (66%), and blogs (57%).”There are many new social media channels rolling in every day and marketers are continuously pressurized to engage prospects that are active on each of them.  In social media marketing, one solution does not apply to all channels, is a known fact. Example: a Facebook marketing strategy is completely different from a marketing strategy executed in LinkedIn or Pinterest.However, there are some best practices that have to be followed when it comes to executing social media B2B marketing strategies.

While marketing is only a part of the activity, it should always be remembered that marketers need to first build a community of prospects, partners and customers who will be evangelists for their company some day.Step 1: Identify Target AudienceThe first step for social media success is to identify your target audience. First, join social networks, where peers are already on board. Applying some smart brand building techniques combined with personalized nurturing of prospects, based on their interest levels, is the first best practice to adopt for social media campaigns to be effective.  It is important to find out the top social applications used by your target segment. They, analyze forums for offers and promotions that have worked very well with your target audience to assess how they respond to them.Step 2: Personalize Marketing StrategyEvery social networking site is different and hence marketing strategies must be planned and executed accordingly. Some important pointers for personalization of marketing strategy are:

  • Find out who the key social media influencers are with the help of free search tools such as Technorati, Twitter Search or Google Blog search.
  • Design and execute marketing campaigns to reach out to these purchasing influencers.
  • Determine the key business objectives that are to be met with social media marketing, first.
  • Allocate manpower to dedicatedly create, track and monitor social media campaigns.
  • Use marketing automation tools to track website visitor intent and use that intelligence to create personalized campaigns.
  • Devise a social media marketing strategy based on your revenue targets, product releases, upcoming events, etc.
  • Prioritize your social media campaigns activities based on how fast your brand image gets established on the social site. Example: If your Twitter stream is going  great guns vs. your Facebook presence that is still lacklustre, it makes sense to spend more time and campaign money on Twitter than Facebook.

Leads procured through social media can be scored using lead scoring model and nurtured through smart drip marketing campaigns.

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