B2B marketing involves a recipe, planned and orchestrated across multiple channels in order to build credibility and generate an increase in leads. To gauge the effectiveness of your marketing plan or recipe, it’s important to regularly evaluate your marketing initiatives against the overall sales and business goals you are trying to achieve. You can then calculate the ROI of those marketing efforts.
When using Twitter as part of your B2B social media marketing plan, in order to ensure the greatest return, consider the following tips:
1. Have multiple employees as users – One way to ensure a steady flow of messages from your company Twitter account is to have many users represent your business and brand. This expands the amount of content, the style of that content, and the amount of conversations. This shows multiple people’s (employees) views and ideas rather than just one.
2. Understand the timing of your tweets – Review the analytics and get an understanding of the specific days and times your company’s messages are more likely to be read and shared. If your followers retweet and share content more frequently at lunchtime or early in the week, be sure that your most compelling content hits during those times.
3. The information must have value to your existing or potential customers –Twitter adds to your effective B2B marketing campaign because it is able to share your message with a large number of people in a short amount of time. Instantly, your message can be shared with a community. And the more valuable the content, the more likely it is to get passed along.
4. Encourage your employees to tweet – Encourage your employees to create their own personal Twitter accounts and share news about the company, its goods and/or services, and its culture. Your companies Twitter strategy needs to incorporate the use of brand messaging, which gives personal value to prospects and existing customers.
Remember, and this is very important, B2B social media policies and training need to be in place before your employees begin to tweet personally about the company.
5. Optimize – At search.twitter.com it’s easy to find out who is tweeting about a particular topic and how frequently that topic is mentioned. Here you can quickly size up the market and the level of interest for your top keywords, therefore this is a smart place to begin your B2B Twitter strategy.
You should use a similar keyword research strategy for Twitter as you would for creating web content. Obviously the keywords and phrases should be relevant to your industry; and you should target those keywords. Who are your biggest competitors and what are they doing? Who’s part of their conversation?
However, also use lay person terminology; include popular keywords or industry trends in your tweets.
6. Hashtags – The # sign is a hashtag and it is used to mark keywords or topics in a Tweet. People use the hashtag symbol before relevant keywords in their Tweet to categorize those Tweets to show more easily in Twitter Search. These tags build a targeted search and they are powerful ways to find, and send out content to a wider audience, not just your own followers.
Research current hashtags in your industry or create a new hashtag to promote your updates. Many B2B consumers start with a simple hashtag search on Twitter.
Keep in mind, when your employees are at an industry event or trade show, they should participate in the hashtag stream, most every event has one. They can tweet about the event, retweet other people’s experiences and, tweet links to your company’s blog posts, promotions and booth information.
7. Proper URL length – The maximum amount of characters you can have on a Twitter update is 140. So leave out non-essential information. For optimal social messaging with Twitter, there are web tools, such as bit.ly that are URL shorteners.
8. Become an information resource – Sharing content, information and news from sources and companies other than your own provides additional value to your followers, increases your credibility, and increases the chances that your tweets will be shared. One of the keys to an effective B2B social media program is sharing.
9. Use the right tools – There are many Twitter tools that can help your existing marketing strategy. Industry knowledge and a well thought out B2B social media strategy are essential elements to increasing your brand recognition and presence. Combined with the right tools, you can achieve optimal results and reach your projected business goals.