Working in a business career almost always entails a structured and professional environment. These environments are valuable because they provide a place for the company to be organized, demonstrate respect, and encourage personal and company-wide improvement. Company values and culture are also reflected in the way a business chooses to market itself, often maintaining the same professional tone. However, it can be beneficial to use more fun, non-traditional ways to market on a more individual level. One of these ways is by using social marketing tools like Facebook and LinkedIn.
People Want to Do Business with Other People
In a recent episode of Digital Conversations with Billy Bateman, Mark Huber—Director of Growth at Metada.io— offered some suggestions on how you can have fun with B2B marketing while still being effective and professional.
When implementing social accounts like LinkedIn and Facebook, each company will have their own account they try to have fun with. Mark Huber stated that at Metadata, they are using their company accounts, “but more importantly, we’re encouraging all of our employees to find their own kind of personal voice and brand.” This approach allows the employees to really become the voice of Metadata. At the end of the day, in the B2B world, people want to do business with other people.
Have Fun with Social Marketing
Putting yourself out there might feel awkward at first, especially for those not as familiar with the social tools. It might seem out of place to change the regular serious updates into something a little more lighthearted. However, Huber suggests that we don’t have to take ourselves too seriously. The Metadata team takes pride in creating an entertainment value in everything they post and do. What better way to market your product than by drawing someone in with something entertaining and fun?
You’ve got to have fun with it and the results will come, even if it’s not always easy to quantify the results. From his experience, Huber stated, “You would be surprised how often this comes up from prospects and even our customers on our call recording. People are noticing it whether they’re engaging with your posts or not.”
How to Get Started
There are a few key things to know when implementing the social marketing approach.
First, it only takes two or three people to get started. Once you have that small group, then you can start to share positive signs it’s getting some traction. For example, taking screenshots and sharing them on Slack with the rest of the company. Share the success so people know that it’s working.
Next, provide people with the content to share. Certainly, employees aren’t required to share every single piece of content that the company has to offer. The team members can pick and choose the content that they want to share based on each individual’s personal brand.
Lastly, the CEO and president need to understand the idea and think it’s important. They know that the audience is there as well. When you’ve got the top down, it just makes it that much easier to implement.
Huber summed it up perfectly when he said, “Really what it comes down to is the more that you can show the people behind the company and the product and the software or whatever it may be that you’re selling, that’s what people are interested in. They want to see who makes the company and there’s no easier way to do it than being active on social.”
How to Keep it Going
The easy part is getting started. That hard part is really converting as a company and keeping it going. It’s important to make it a priority even at times when you might feel swamped with other things going on. There may be weeks when you don’t get around to posting, but you can still go and comment on other people’s posts. You may even find from the comments what is getting people excited, and you can use that to create a longer form post in the future.
It comes down to consistency and sharing success. Commit to it and stay on top of it. Sticking to a level of consistency means to continue to push things out when we think we need to post. There are people who post for the algorithm rather than posting for themselves or the audience. Doing that is monotonous, uninteresting, and needs to be avoided.
How to Get Started as an Individual
As your team starts to implement this marketing strategy, it might not be easy for everyone to get started right away. There are a few tips to remember when getting started as an individual.
- The most difficult part is the writing. You need to write and write consistently.
- Be willing to put yourself out there.
- Be willing to swing and miss a few times before you find what works best for you.
- You will find what works best by consistently writing and by trying different types of posts.
- You can get started by simply commenting on other people’s posts. As you get more comfortable, you can turn some of those comments into your own posts.
- Follow a few people that you like (10 to 15 people) and pick and choose things that you like that they’re doing. Implement their styles into your own writing and put your own spin on it.
- Start with a goal of how many posts you want to create to get the hang of it. It will become more normal and natural over time.
Social Proof Works
In short, using social marketing tools such as Facebook and LinkedIn to market on a more individual level is a great way to promote your brand in a fun and natural way.
If you’re interested in implementing this marketing strategy but you’re worried it won’t catch on quickly, get your team on board with you by using social proof. Social proof works for just about anything. Go find some companies who you think are doing this really well and take screenshots of those. Show them to your boss and your boss’s boss. It’s so much easier when you have examples of success, and you can show them that it works.