How to Create a B2B Social Media Strategy that Delivers

Key Takeaways on B2B Social Media 📈 📊

  • Data-Driven Approach is Key: B2B social media strategies have evolved from broad tactics to targeted, data-driven approaches. By leveraging data, marketers can create content that resonates with their target audience and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns.
  • Complex Offerings Require Nuanced Understanding: To market B2B products and services effectively, it’s essential to understand and communicate the complex nature of these offerings. This understanding allows for creating content that accurately represents the intricate components and benefits of B2B solutions.
  • The Full Social Ecosystem Influences B2B Sales: B2B buyers are active across various digital platforms, not just social media. An integrated marketing strategy that includes forums, review sites, and professional communities can provide a comprehensive view of the customer journey and influence purchasing decisions.
  • Internal Collaboration Enhances Social Strategy: Successful B2B social media requires coordination across various departments within an organization. Cross-functional collaboration ensures that social media efforts are aligned with the company’s broader goals and objectives.
  • Technology Integration Streamlines Social Media Management: Social media management tools and CRM integrations can optimize the execution and impact of social media strategies. These technologies enable marketers to schedule content, engage with their audience, and track performance more efficiently.
  • Audience Segmentation Leads to Tailored Engagement: Identifying and understanding the target audience is crucial for developing a B2B social media strategy. Detailed buyer personas and industry-specific insights allow for the creation of tailored content that addresses the unique needs and interests of each segment.
  • Influencer Marketing Gains Traction in B2B: Collaborating with influencers with authority in a specific industry can help B2B brands tap into new audiences and build credibility. Influencer partnerships should be strategic, creating authentic content that resonates with the influencers and the brand’s audiences.

Social media is a pivotal channel for B2B brands to build engagement, nurture leads, and propel sales. Gone are the days of broad social media tactics without strategy. B2B marketers now take a targeted, data-driven approach to social platforms as part of an integrated brand and demand strategy. The goal is to spark meaningful connections with potential customers, guiding them to purchase.

To resonate with the highly sophisticated and complicated B2B and tech landscape, marketers must grasp the nuances of business-centric products and services. It requires dissecting complex offerings as one would the intricate components of a high-tech product. Beyond the major social networks, B2B social activities span forums, review sites, and professional communities where opinions form and decisions unfold.

key insight

60% of B2B marketers say social media generates the most leads compared to other channels (Source)

An impactful social media strategy for B2B combines analytical precision with engaging storytelling. Content must resonate with target buyer personas through tailored narratives and messaging. At the same time, data insights inform campaign segmentation, platform selection, ad targeting, and performance tracking.

With every interaction measurable and every click optimizable, social platforms allow B2B brands to foster brand advocacy and customer loyalty efficiently at scale. In today’s digital business landscape, a strategic social media plan is not just nice to have but an essential component of success. By unifying creative and analytical best practices, B2B marketers can realize social media’s immense potential.

What does B2B Mean Anyway?

The B2B model revolves around businesses selling products and services to other organizations rather than individual consumers. This commercial ecosystem thrives in the technology sector, where end consumer goods contain components sourced from various supplier companies.

Consider Apple’s MacBook Pro laptop. Visible pieces like the aluminum chassis and operating system bear the Apple name. Yet, peek inside, and the intricate components come from vendors worldwide. The motherboard, storage drives, fans, cables, chips, and modules originate from companies like Intel, AMD, Micron, Broadcom, and Qualcomm. Apple sources these business-to-business parts, assembles them, and delivers the finished product to consumers.

key insight

75% of B2B buyers use social media to make purchasing decisions (Source)

Multiply this by the countless technical devices used daily, and you grasp the breadth of the B2B marketplace. It is a complex supply chain of companies providing specialized parts, technologies, and services to other enterprises. B2B fuels innovation by allowing brands to focus on their core competencies while partnering for components beyond their expertise. Seamless collaboration between businesses ultimately enables the delivery of cutting-edge consumer products and technologies.

Understanding the Full Digital Social Ecosystem

B2B buyers interact across this digital ecosystem outside of just social media. By analyzing conversations and behavior across these interconnected channels, brands gain a comprehensive view of the B2B sales funnel. While challenging, incorporating insights from the entire social ecosystem is essential when building an integrated B2B social media marketing strategy.

Social MediaLinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok
Social Messaging AppsWhatsApp, Telegram, Discord, WeChat
Social Audio AppsClubhouse, Twitter Spaces, Locker Room
Technology ForumsReddit, GitHub, SourceForge, Launchpad, Stack Overflow, Spiceworks
Software Review SitesG2, Capterra, TrustRadius
Branded CommunitiesSAP, AWS Developer Community, Google Cloud Slack Groups
Q&A SitesQuora, Stack Exchange
Private GroupsFacebook Groups, LinkedIn Groups, Twitter Communities
Articles and CommentsBlog posts and discussions
Search EnginesGoogle, Bing, Perplexity.AI

Internal Considerations of a B2B Social Media Strategy

Creating an impactful shared media strategy in the B2B space necessitates careful coordination across multiple internal stakeholders, standardized workflows, and supporting technologies. Unlike consumer brand social efforts, which marketing may spearhead independently, B2B social initiatives thrive on enterprise-wide collaboration. Securing buy-in and participation from cross-functional groups ensures strategic alignment with broader corporate objectives.

Clearly defined processes and protocols enable employees company-wide to engage consistently and reinforce brand standards. Marketing tech stacks must seamlessly integrate social functionalities with CRM and marketing automation platforms to close the loop between social activity and sales impact. When people, processes, and technologies work in concert across the organization, B2B social media expands from a marketing channel into an engine fueling lead generation, revenue growth, and customer loyalty.

Hiring the Right TeamSecure buy-in from cross-functional groups. Marketing leads but insights from other departments are critical.Conflicting priorities across groups.
Building the Right ProcessesContent protocols and workflows for governance. Issue escalation process. Crisis response plans.Overly rigid or complex processes.
Deploying TechnologySocial publishing and listening tools. Marketing platform integrations for impact analysis.Legacy system limitations. Feature gaps.

Hiring the Right Team

An effective internal social media strategy starts with securing buy-in across key departments and stakeholders. While the marketing team spearheads core strategy development and content activation, insights from groups like Sales, PR, Customer Experience, and IT are critical.

Bringing together a coalition of cross-functional decision-makers enables a collective intelligence approach to social media. Different groups shed light on how social activities intersect with their respective goals and processes. Aligning on target outcomes and success metrics is easier with enterprise-wide input and endorsement.

key insight

B2B marketers see a 45% higher number of sales opportunities using social selling techniques on LinkedIn (Source)

Marketing provides the core strategic vision and tactical execution. But partnerships across the organization ensure alignment with broader corporate objectives versus operating in a silo. Social media flourishes most as an integrated endeavor woven into the business fabric.

Build the Right Processes

Consistent processes and governance frameworks are crucial for effective social media management. Well-defined workflows and policies empower employees to engage on social platforms in a way that mitigates potential brand risks.

Content approval protocols ensure messaging aligns with brand voice and guidelines. Response authorization processes like social media ticket escalation sustain quality control for inquiries. Issue monitoring protocols help identify and address emerging crises early.

Crisis readiness plans outline response steps based on issue severity, equipping teams to act quickly in difficult situations. Auditing procedures track compliance with processes like the regular review of account security settings.

Documented workflows balance structure with agility. They enable organizations to participate on social platforms at scale while sustaining quality, protecting the brand, and driving performance.

Deploy Technology to Scale

Relevant technologies and platform integrations optimize social media execution, analysis, and impact. Social media management tools streamline content scheduling, engagement, and reporting.

key insight

70% of B2B marketers have seen increased sales from social media efforts (Source)

Social listening provides real-time insights into brand mentions, sentiment, trends, and competitive intelligence. Integrations with marketing automation and CRM combine social insights with broader campaign data and pipeline metrics.

Internal collaboration tools facilitate information sharing and issue tracking across involved groups. Advanced integrations syndicate social content to digital signage, websites, and other platforms.

With user-friendly, integrated solutions, employees can manage initiatives, respond quickly, and evaluate performance. Technology infrastructure removes friction and closes the loop between social efforts and business results.

Identify the Target Audience

Clearly defining target audiences is the critical first step when developing a B2B social media strategy. For technology companies, two core segments are Business Decision Makers (BDMs) and IT Decision Makers (ITDMs).

BDMs control purchasing authority and budget. Depending on company size, they may be CEOs, COOs, operations heads, or general managers. ITDMs are heavily involved in software acquisition, given their technical expertise.

Thorough audience research and segmentation provide actionable insights to engage each group effectively. Developing detailed buyer personas brings ideal customers to life through attributes like demographics, challenges, goals, and media habits. Analyzing specific industries in-depth also yields advantages. They identify key influencers, publications, topics, and narratives for a given sector and spotlight where and how conversations unfold. Monitoring traditional and social media reveals what motivates and matters to niche audiences.

key insight

LinkedIn generates 277% more leads for B2B marketers than other social platforms (Source)

Sophisticated audience intelligence platforms automate these insights. Audiense, Helix, Talkwalker, and Spotright analyze target segments across media types and surface conversational patterns and narrative intelligence.

Armed with rich psychographic and behavioral data, brands can create a B2B brand voice and craft social content and engagement tailored to what matters most to each audience. Targeted social media moves beyond guesswork into insights-driven conversations.

Develop a Content Strategy that Tells Breakthrough Stories

There are a few ways to create a content strategy. I like to classify brand storytelling into three core pillars whereby - Your brand is the hero of the story, Your brand is a character in the story and Your brand provides perspective on an existing story.

Developing breakthrough brand stories requires thoughtful content strategies that provide value to audiences. Rather than overt marketing messages, impactful B2B social media storytelling subtly spotlights the brand through three narrative approaches:

First, brands can be the hero of their own stories by showcasing thought leadership, milestones, innovations, or workplace happenings. Executives discussing industry trends or videos unveiling new technology keep the focus on the organization educationally.

Second, brands can be supported by highlighting stakeholders like customers and partners. User testimonials and influencer perspectives uplift other voices while implying the brand’s role. This lends credibility through third-party advocacy.

Third, brands can provide perspective on broader industry narratives. Monitoring trending topics and contributing informed opinions establishes the brand as an authoritative source. Real-time content creation demonstrates relevance.

Narrative ApproachExplanationExample ContentConsiderations
Your brand is the heroFocused on your brand and offeringsThought leadership, product launches, corporate milestonesBuilds awareness and expertise
Your brand is a characterHighlights stakeholders like customers and partnersTestimonials, influencer perspectives, user spotlightsAdds social proof and credibility
Your brand provides perspectiveCommentary on broader industry news and topicsTrend analysis, real-time reaction postsDemonstrates relevance and authority
Customer is the heroUplift your audience and their needsTips, user spotlights, polls, behind-the-scenesFosters relationships and engagement
Community is the heroIndustry trends, issues bigger than your brandUnbiased education, bringing people togetherEstablishes trust and integrity

Subtly threading the brand throughout Stories earns attention without overbearing promotions. By providing value around topics, audiences care about, clever content strategies build affinity and trust organically over time. Brands become characters in their customers’ stories.

Social-First Campaigns

Social media campaigns provide a powerful means of connecting with niche target audiences and achieving defined objectives. When developed thoughtfully, they can significantly expand a brand’s reach and impact.

Unlike always-on social content creation, campaigns are finite initiatives with distinct start and end dates. They often supplement broader marketing programs involving commercials, events, sponsorships, and other activations.

Effective social campaigns increase awareness, promote products, or support recruiting goals. An omnichannel approach delivers cohesive messaging to intended audiences across multiple touchpoints. Repetition is critical—buyers must see a brand message three to five times before acting.

Increasingly, brands pursue social-first campaigns with creative assets explicitly designed for platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. Social becomes the primary driver versus just supporting traditional media. Significant investments in video and other engaging formats acknowledge social’s ability to propel brands forward as engagement channels in their own right.

However, integrated omnichannel campaigns remain vital. Social creative should tie back to core themes and narratives for consistency across e-commerce, email, sales enablement, PR, and other initiatives. The most successful efforts synchronize every consumer touchpoint around shared goals.

With strategic planning and robust content, brands maximize social campaigns’ ability to cultivate brand love and affinity with new audiences. Their full capabilities are unlocked through integration and recognizing social as a launch platform and a core driver of memorable initiatives.

B2B Social Media Marketing Demand Generation Programs

Demand generation marketing leverages content to convert prospects previously unaware of a brand into sales leads. By targeting specific audiences with relevant content and calls to action at the right moment, B2B marketers spark initial interest and pipeline growth.

Popular tactics include gating valuable content like reports, eBooks, and whitepapers behind lead capture forms. Providing contact details becomes the only way for prospects to access these resources.

An integrated approach aligns social media, email, and website efforts around core persona and engagement insights for maximum impact. However, LinkedIn typically delivers exponential benefits for B2B lead gen thanks to its professional audience.

Thoughtful LinkedIn content reaches stakeholders during their buyer’s journey and provides value exchange through gated assets. Whether promoting posts, hosting LinkedIn Live videos, or sponsoring relevant content, LinkedIn surfaces new contacts.

Leads generated then enter automated marketing workflows and sales enablement systems. Marketers nurture leads through personalized email and social outreach until the designated time to transition them to sales teammates.

With continuous testing and paid media optimization based on cost-per-lead KPIs, social media elevates awareness and lead generation. Audiences receive tailored branded touchpoints while marketers deliver predictable prospect pipelines and ROI.

Integrating Influencers into B2B Social Media

Influencer marketing continues to grow exponentially, with spending expected to top $5 billion by 2023 per eMarketer. While specific B2B allocation remains unclear, the approach provides distinct benefits for enterprise brands.

Influencer marketing involves collaborating with individuals with strong authority and engagement within their niche to support branded campaigns and initiatives. There is a value exchange – influencers receive compensation to lend their perspective and community reach.

For B2B brands, partnering with industry experts and technology thought leaders allows tapping into their attentive audiences. Whether through co-creating content, spotlighting brand partnerships, providing testimonials, or participating in events, influencers humanize a brand.

Table: Breakdown of Tactics

Influencer Identification & AnalysisResearch audience interests and identify relevant niche voicesAudience analysis, topic monitoring, platform analysisInfluencer reach, engagement rates
Organic Influencer EngagementBuild authentic connections with influencers through listening and value-driven interactionsCommenting, sharing, community buildingFunnel stage progression, advocacy
Paid Influencer CampaignsFormal influencer partnerships to co-create content and amplify messagesSponsored posts, content creation, ambassador programsImpressions, reach, conversions
Influencer MeasurementQuantify awareness, engagement, and performance of influencer effortsFunnel tracking, custom campaign links, benchmarkingWeb traffic, clicks, amplification rate

They add an accessible face to companies while sharing meaningful insights and experiences. Audiences find influencer perspectives highly credible, driving brand affinity. Additionally, quality influencer content receives extensive organic amplification across social media. This increased share of voice elevates awareness and relationships with niche target groups.

When identifying relevant voices, B2B marketers should evaluate industry expertise, audience quality, and engagement rates, along with content production values and professionalism. Not all influencers can equally deliver B2B impact.

With strategic implementation, B2B influencer marketing programs grant access to new communities and conversations, ultimately driving leads and loyalty. Their industry credibility presents B2B brands in a genuine, relatable light.

Influencer Identification & Analysis

Successfully identifying and analyzing relevant B2B influencers requires rigorous research into niche topics, roles, and conversations. While consumer brands often focus on broad lifestyle personalities, enterprise marketers seek industry-specific expertise.

For example, a cloud security provider would target influencers actively discussing related challenges like data breaches or ransomware. These include security engineers, IT thought leaders, and cybersecurity analysts with engaged technical audiences.

In-depth influencer analytics uncover top themes and discussion trends within these professional communities. Monitoring hashtag volumes, keyword mentions, and profile growth highlights rising voices and opportunities. These insights directly inform content strategies and digital campaigns. New influencer partnerships, co-created assets, and sponsored initiatives align with topics resonating across niche target groups.

Ongoing analysis continually refines influencer targeting as new voices emerge and trends fluctuate. Dedicated tools like Traackr, Buzzsumo, and Klear provide B2B-centric filtering for size, domain authority, and professional categories.

While rigorous, these efforts ensure influencer programs achieve cut-through and relevance. Marketers integrate influencers strategically based on data versus guesswork. Targeted outreach rallies niche communities around what matters most to them.

Organic Influencer Engagement

B2B brands increasingly cultivate organic influencer relationships to drive ongoing value versus transactional partnerships. Authentic connections emerge that support long-term initiatives when brands actively engage and monitor key influencer voices.

The first step is identifying niche influencers using audience and topic analysis. These subject matter experts are added to always-on monitoring panels to track emerging trends in real-time.

With these insights, content producers quickly ideate and create social posts reacting to trending discussions. Timely, value-driven engagement helps position the brand as a conversational partner rather than just a promotion-focused account.

Thoughtful likes, shares, and comments on influencer content showcase alignment with their community interests. In turn, influencers organically amplify the brand to their loyal followers. This raises awareness and affinity through recommendations from credible experts.

Building authentic relationships early provides a runway for long-term partnerships. Initial organic engagement reveals which influencers align best with brand values and seek future collaborations. Those connections can spark paid brand ambassador programs, co-created content, and other in-depth activations.

By nurturing influencer connections daily through listening and engagement, B2B brands become ingrained in the online community. They build strategic relationships based on shared interests, not one-off transactions. When done effectively, this influencer relationship-building sustains meaningful marketing partnerships over time.

Paid Influencer Campaigns

Paid B2B influencer campaigns enable more extensive collaborations beyond organic social engagement. Formal partnerships activate influencers’ content creation skills and community reach to achieve key brand objectives.

Common paid media campaigns include sponsored social posts, original co-created content, and brand ambassadorships. For example, influencers may produce videos, podcasts, or blog articles focused on relevant industry topics as a thought leadership collaboration.

Influencers then share and comment on these assets across their owned media channels, amplifying messages to engaged audiences. Their credibility lends authenticity while driving awareness. Alternatively, brands may license and share influencer content directly from their social media accounts. Curating and repurposing quality third-party posts boosts engagement and provides social proof.

Whether leveraging influencer-generated or brand-owned content, paid partnerships strategically activate an influencer’s community and skillset. So long as the collaboration provides mutual value, B2B brands gain significant exposure and affinity.

Dedicated campaigns turn one-off collaborations into lasting relationships. Continuously nurturing influencer connections earns attention long after initiatives conclude. It cements brands as leaders ingrained in the conversations that matter most.

Influencer Measurement

Strategic measurement enables brands to optimize influencer initiatives and showcase impact. Tailored metrics provide visibility into relationship progression and campaign performance.

Table: Influencer Funnel Measurement

StageDefinitionGoalKey Metrics
UnawareDoes not follow or mention brandMove to Aware stage% of total influencers at stage
AwareFollows brand or mentioned in last 12 monthsMove to Engaged stageFollower growth, % mentions
EngagedActively shares branded contentMove to Advocate stageContent shares, click-through rate
AdvocateConsistently shares content across channelsMaintain advocacyAmplification rate, content views

For organic engagement, an influencer funnel tracks awareness, interaction, and advocacy milestones. Influencers are mapped based on status, mentions, and content-sharing frequency. The goal is to graduate voices from simple followers to consistently engaged advocates. Active relationship cultivation should steadily move influencers down the funnel over time.

Paid campaigns require more advanced measurement. Custom campaign links and UTM codes track influencer content performance on-site traffic, conversions, and sales. Pre and post-campaign site analytics comparisons quantify impact versus baseline metrics. Social engagement benchmarks also highlight reach and amplification relative to influencer audience size.

Multipronged measurement produces comprehensive insights to refine ongoing influencer targeting and activation strategies. Quantifiable outcomes help justify more significant influencer marketing investments across organizations as well.

The goal for measuring organic influencer engagement is to move the influencers from the top of the funnel, or the aware phase, to the bottom of the funnel and turn them into brand advocates.

A blend of relationship brand health tracking, activity monitoring, and performance dashboards produces a clear picture of progress and value. With data-driving decisions, brands maximize the productivity of organic connections and formal partnerships.

B2B Social Media Should Integrate Employee Advocacy

Integrating employee advocacy strengthens B2B social media and content strategies through authentic insider perspectives. By empowering staff as thought leaders, brands inject fresh voices directly into customer conversations.

Table: Tactics to Integrate Employee Advocacy With B2B Social Media

Employee AdvocacyFormal program to empower employees as thought leadersTraining, social media policy, goal-settingCredibility, reach, relationships
Sales EnablementEnable sales teams on social selling best practicesSocial media training, content sharing resourcesIncreased prospect engagement
Executive Thought LeadershipActivate executives to share insights on social mediaSpeaking engagements, podcasts, publishingAuthority, trust, brand lift
Connecting Influencers & EmployeesIdentify influencer-executive alignments for collaborationsRelationship mapping, co-created contentExtended reach, influencer credibility
Scaling with TechnologyPlatforms to manage content, training, analyticsEveryoneSocial, Hootsuite, SociabbleGovernance, enablement, optimization

A structured advocacy program trains employees on building professional social media profiles and participating in industry dialogues. Participants learn best practices for creating and sharing content that provides value. This humanizing approach often includes social selling training for sales teams. Reps learn to leverage networks like LinkedIn to connect and share relevant materials with prospects.

Sales Enablement

Integrating employee advocacy strengthens B2B social media and content strategies through authentic insider perspectives. By empowering staff as thought leaders, brands inject fresh voices directly into customer conversations.

A structured advocacy program trains employees on building professional social media profiles and participating in industry dialogues. Participants learn best practices for creating and sharing content that provides value.

This humanizing approach often includes social selling training for sales teams. Reps learn to leverage networks like LinkedIn to connect and share relevant materials with prospects. Executive thought leadership also spotlights leaders via platforms they actively use. Their insights directly from the top add credibility and authority.

Thoughtful employee activation brings brands to life through the perspectives of real people versus faceless corporate accounts. Audiences engage with insider views on trends, innovations, and workflows.

With proper training and governance, brands tap into a wealth of expertise to drive awareness and relationships. Strategic employee advocacy makes every worker a conduit for meaningful interactions with customers. Their collective voice and reach amplify organic brand exposure.

Executive Thought Leadership

Executive thought leadership represents a distinct facet of employee advocacy that establishes credibility and authority from the top levels. While most activation focuses on subject matter experts or brand ambassadors, cultivating leaders is equally strategic.

Brands increasingly activate executives across social platforms where business conversations unfold. More than figureheads, executives directly share insights, trends, and vision. This vulnerable, humanizing approach makes executives accessible while spotlighting their expertise. Leadership leveraging social media like LinkedIn builds genuine connections and trust with audiences.

And executive thought leadership extends beyond social posts. Options like the LinkedIn Podcast Network provide avenues to deliver in-depth perspectives: awards, speaking engagements, and media profiles arranged by PR offer further outlets.

The most influential B2B brands establish executives as forward-thinking luminaries within their industry niches. Their poignant points of view and principles shape dialogues and perceptions.

An integrated executive advocacy strategy sustains thought leadership beyond temporary campaigns. When leaders commit to regular sharing and engagement, brands earn authority and affinity through the lens of real human vision.

Connecting Influencers With Employees

A smart social media strategy combines influencer partnerships with employee advocacy for maximum impact. Connecting these programs amplifies the reach and value for audiences.

Many B2B brands map executives to niche external influencers with similar perspectives and audiences. These one-to-one connections spark mutually beneficial collaborations. For example, technology executives may engage with industry analysts frequently discussing new product capabilities. Commenting on posts and sharing content builds relationships.

This cultivation leads to co-created thought leadership assets like blogs, videos, or webinars that tap each leader’s expertise. Jointly developed materials hold deep credibility with shared followers. Informal employee-influencer connections blossom into formal programs with compensation, process rigor, and quantified objectives. Authentic relationship building provides the necessary runway.

Strategic mapping identifies ideal pairings while listening tools monitor real-time opportunities to interact. Conversation data informs advocates on connecting within their niche.

An ecosystem of employees and partners multiplies exposure. With influencer imagery and media, a brand’s message scales through myriad trusted voices.

Scaling Employee Programs With Technology

Technology is indispensable for scaling employee advocacy programs across global enterprises. Without centralized platforms, organic content creation at such breadth quickly becomes chaotic. Modern tools remove friction so brands can fully harness workforce knowledge.

Solutions like EveryoneSocial and Hootsuite Amplify enable centralized administration and governance. Employees access curated content to share based on predetermined permissions and messaging guardrails.


See a complete list of employee advocacy platform providers on G2 Grid® for Employee Advocacy.

User-friendly apps simplify onboarding and training via self-paced online modules. Post-scheduling and performance tracking bring consistency to distributed teams.

Automated, configurable workflows strictly manage the branding and quality of scaled participant output. Real-time analytics provide transparency into content resonance and channel metrics.

Vital integrations with existing martech and CRM systems attribute pipeline and revenue growth to advocacy efforts. This closed-loop visibility quantifies program impact and ROI. Without such infrastructure, most struggle to turn employee voices into an enterprise-wide competitive advantage.

Building B2B Branded Online Communities

Branded online communities allow B2B companies to spark meaningful dialogues with stakeholders while driving business value. By creating owned platforms for customers, prospects, and employees to connect, brands benefit from organic engagement, insights, and exposure.

Moderated forums facilitated by companies like SAP, Oracle, and IBM enable peers to exchange best practices, product feedback, and technology perspectives. These authentic conversations build loyalty while informing innovation and support.

Public community postings also improve search visibility, as all discussions and keywords get indexed by engines like Google. This draws in targeted new audiences organically.

Integrating influencers into communities as subject matter experts lends further credibility while diversifying perspectives. Thought leaders foster richer exchanges.


See a complete list of online community platform providers from G2 Grid® for Online Community Management.

To maximize community impact, strategic moderation, promotion, and integration with existing properties like help centers is crucial. Robust forums become hubs where brands and audiences collaborate.

Dedicated online communities and platforms from Gainsight, Khoros, and Bettermode scale community building and analysis conversations. Investing in owned venues to engage users pays dividends across the customer lifecycle, from acquisition to retention.

Building a B2B Social Media Measurement Framework

Determining the business impact of B2B social media requires a nuanced framework blending financial outcomes and non-financial metrics. While financial returns prove challenging to correlate directly, a mosaic of engagement, reach, and conversion metrics quantifies overall performance.

Many question social media’s ROI, given that high-value B2B deals rarely stem directly from platforms like Twitter or LinkedIn. However, several indicative measures across awareness, leads, and traffic suggest an incremental impact on the customer journey.

Leading indicators like audience growth, content engagement, inbound links, and search visibility showcase expanding brand exposure and authority. Conversion metrics around form fills, content downloads, and site/app activity measure how social channels influence purchasing.

Multitouch attribution, while imperfect, also helps assign weighted credit to social efforts when sales eventually occur. This approximates the financial contribution across the buyer funnel.

A balanced scorecard from impressions to pipeline illuminates how social embeds brands into audience journeys over time. While hard to isolate, social importance thrives in an omnichannel ecosystem. Measurements should reflect this integrated reality.

Another way to think about social media measurement is to break down the metrics by programs & campaigns, channels, and business metrics.

Program & Campaign Metrics

This measurement approach supports short-term programs and campaigns. There’s a start date and an end date. These could be digital campaigns, product launches, or an event:

MetricDescriptionSample KPIsGoal
AwarenessTotal reach and impressionsImpressions, content views, video viewsMaximize exposure
EngagementInteractions and response to contentLikes, comments, shares, click rateFoster participation
InfluenceImpact of influencers or advocates% increase in reach/engagementLeverage networks
ImpactDesired actions takenSubscribers, traffic, form fillsDrive key conversions
AdvocacyOrganic recommendationsMentions, hashtags, tagsCultivate brand love

Channel-Specific Metrics

This measurement approach is focused on the channel level–LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and any other brand channels:

MetricDescriptionSample KPIsGoal
Community GrowthExpansion of owned communitiesMembers, posts, retention rateCultivate loyal followers
Conversation Share% of relevant category discussionCategory search volume, topic mentionsLead industry narratives
Search VisibilityImpressions and clicks from search enginesRankings, organic traffic %Improve SEO strength
Lead GenerationQuality contacts and prospectsLeads by source, sales pipeline impactDrive sales pipeline
Employee AmplificationReach from workforce sharingEmployees active, content sharedExpand employee advocacy

Business Metrics

This measurement approach provides metrics showing business value. This doesn’t mean they are all aligned to financial metrics or ROI. Instead, these are metrics that business leaders are asking for:

MetricDescriptionSample KPIsGoalQuestions Answered
AwarenessBrand perception and recallSurveys, brand buzzIncrease brand equityHow do audiences view our brand?
EngagementProspect interactions and conversionsLeads by source, MQLsGrow sales pipelineAre we capturing interest and driving action?
InfluenceLikelihood to purchase or recommendNPS, product considerationGuide purchase decisionsHow do we sway purchase intent?
ImpactSales performance outcomesRevenue, LTV, cost savingsProve financial ROIWhat is the sales impact of our efforts?
AdvocacyOrganic evangelistsEmployee & customer advocatesCultivate loyal promotersWho are our brand champions?

This measurement approach provides metrics showing business value. This doesn’t mean they are all aligned to financial metrics or ROI. Instead, these are metrics that business leaders are asking for:

These are just a few ways to measure the impact and effectiveness of B2B social media marketing. The key is to build a framework aligned with your business and marketing goals.

Wrap-up: B2B Social Media Can Deliver!

Today’s digital landscape requires B2B brands to adopt an integrated, data-driven social media strategy to engage audiences fully. Success arises from understanding the nuances of how niche professional communities interact across channels, topics, and platforms. This comprehensive approach tailors initiatives to resonate throughout the complex B2B buyer’s journey.

Thoughtful audience segmentation and storytelling develop content and engagement tailored for each persona. Influencer collaborations amplify messages through the voices of credible industry experts. Behind the scenes, coordination across sales, PR, IT, and executives unify social media with broader corporate objectives.

Ongoing commitment to testing, optimization, and metrics is equally crucial. Multichannel data and attribution quantify impact across awareness, leads, and revenue. Platform integrations streamline execution and analysis.

With relentless focus on target audience insights, relevant messaging, and enterprise-wide adoption, B2B brands transform social media into an engine for meaningful stakeholder engagement at scale. Social morphs from an isolated channel into an ecosystem that propels brands forward across the customer lifecycle. The strategies explored equip organizations to realize social’s immense potential.

hot take

Let me tell you something – navigating the B2B social media landscape these days is like trying to solve a Rubik’s Cube blindfolded. If your social media strategy is still throwing spaghetti at the wall and hoping something sticks, you’re about as behind the times as a flip phone.

The big revelation? It’s all about data. We’re slicing and dicing analytics like a late-night infomercial for kitchen knives. Without data, you’re just shouting into the void. And let’s not even get started on influencer marketing; it’s the new office romance – everyone’s doing it, but nobody’s talking about it. Here’s the bottom line: if your B2B strategy isn’t as targeted as a laser beam, you might use a carrier pigeon​.

Michael Brito

Michael Brito is a Digital OG. He’s been building brands online since Al Gore invented the Internet. You can connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter.