Four powerful groups of B2B brand advocates on social media

According to 21% of B2B marketing professionals, they do not have enough of an audience on social media.

Social advocacy is a powerful tool to help overcome these challenges.

Fully 70 percent of B2B buyers rely on social media to do pre-purchase research. According to Edelman’s Trust Barometer, social users are more likely to trust recommendations made by friends and family than any other source. B2B companies can benefit from a social media advocacy program to help build their brand and increase sales.

How can you identify your potential advocates on social media and build a system of advocacy around them?

1. Employees

Leads from social employee advocacy convert seven times more frequently than any other lead. This fact is especially relevant for B2B companies with socially active sales teams. If you allow your sales team to create powerful social profiles, you can manage your customer relationships and represent your brand on social media by dealing with prospects.

You can also increase your reach up to 100-fold by encouraging your employees to share your marketing materials online (depending upon the size of your company and their social influence). A well-implemented Employee Advocacy program can also provide other benefits.

Saw a rise in revenue when global software giant Adobe launched its employee advocacy program. One employee generated more revenue than Adobe Photoshop’s official Twitter account. IBM is another great case study for employee advocacy.

2. Experts in the industry and social influencers

Around 4/5 B2B decision makers refer to vendor-independent communities at least once per month for business reasons and use blogs and online communities when making purchasing decisions. For every piece of content that you create, the decision maker will read three additional pieces not created by yourself.

It is important to be recognized as an industry expert and influence external sites to influence their decision. You can have a significant impact on the image of your brand and sales by developing relationships with social influencers who are experts. Ask for feedback on a regular schedule or use Ted Rubin’s phrase, “focus on earning a return on your relationships.” Some companies will also pay influential experts to appear on their social media channels.

Influencer marketing is demonstrated by the way some social media tools are marketed. Hootsuite, Buffer, and other top social media tools have strong relationships with social media marketing influencers.

3. Clients and prospects

Case studies are also cited by 88% of B2B marketers. Testimonials can have a direct impact on sales, brand perception, and credibility.

Customers who are happy with your service or product may be willing to refer it to others. However, unless you make it easy for them to do so, they will not. According to a study, 91% of customers are willing to recommend a product/service. However, only 11% ask for referrals.

You can also ask your clients to rate and review you on Facebook or other social media sites and collect testimonials, which you can use on your site and social media pages. A case study that showcases your work for a client is another powerful way to convince and woo prospects.

4. Business partners

Businesses often partner with service providers to provide data support, technical support, network management, and document tracking. Essentially, such partnerships–whether a vendor-supplier relationship, a service integration, or an event partnership–constitute a network of people who could advocate for your brand on social media. You can create content together and promote each other’s businesses on social media.

You should be able to find partners with a similar audience,a large following, and influence on social media. Each party can reach a wider audience by exchanging content and co-promotion. You could also partner with another business to create a social media network, co-host a conference, or publish a newsletter together.

You could reach out not only to a complementary company but also to one that is dissimilar and targets the same audience. GoPro’s and Red Bull Stratos’ partnership is a good example. Felix Baumgartner’s stunt was captured by a GoPro, effectively promoting the two brands.

Brand Advocacy Tool

Use advocacy, project management, and content management tools to organize and streamline your brand’s advocacy efforts.

1. LinkedIn Elevate

LinkedIn Elevate allows you to curate content from LinkedIn Pulse and then share it with employee advocates so they can publish. You can track employee activity through the tracking metrics on mobile and web-enabled platforms.

2. DrumUp is a platform for employee advocacy.

DrumUp allows you to invite your employees and other advocates, with whom you have curated content, to share it on Facebook, Linked, and Twitter. Gamification helps encourage social activity by advocates through contests. This Web, mobile, and email-enabled platform provides deep analytics on the reach of your advocacy program and advocates’ activities.

3. Influitive

Influitive is a platform that encourages advocates to share content and testimonials across the Web. It helps your business drive more traffic, engagement, and revenue. You can organize your content collection efforts by automatically recognizing key stages of the process: collection, tracking, and rewarding.

4. InkyBee

InkyBee is an influencer discovery platform and relationship management tool that lets you track and add the activities of your target influencers in one place. It helps you find the right influencers with its research and discovery tools. It allows you to track communication with influencers as well as keywords relevant to your campaign. You can monitor and track mentions of your campaigns, identify influencers who may be interested in your campaign, and your interactions with these people.

5. Klout

Klout is an influence management and tracking system that calculates your score and gives you ways to improve it. You can use the application to create content that encourages happy customers and fans to spread your name and target them in order to collect and earn this information. You can compare before and after scores to track the effectiveness of this content.

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