We write a lot about LinkedIn as part of an inbound digital marketing strategy for B2Bs. That’s because it’s an extremely useful and underutilized social media tool, with applications that are particularly suited to industrial manufacturers and other B2Bs. To help you truly take full advantage of this platform, we’ve compiled all our content on LinkedIn in one place for you. Click the header of the section most relevant to you for more in-depth information on using LinkedIn to promote your B2B.
LinkedIn Ads are one of the best forms of PPC for B2Bs for numerous reasons, the most important of these being that your audience, business professionals in your industry, is using LinkedIn, and you can target them with a great deal of accuracy, almost down to the exact person you want to sell to. Plus, LinkedIn offers comprehensive metrics to help you improve your campaigns and discover who you’re reaching.
Creating LinkedIn Content
A major benefit of LinkedIn is its publishing platform, which allows you to produce and promote content to your professional network and to others in your industry, boosting your credibility and name recognition. But just because it’s easy to hit the publish button doesn’t mean you should be posting anything. With LinkedIn and other online content platforms, it pays to be intentional with your topics, titles, length, and all other aspects of your writing.
LinkedIn also has a great way for you to showcase specific products or services with their Showcase Pages. These pages create curated feeds that users can follow, and where you can post and share relevant content. They’re a useful way to organize content as well as segment and target specific customer types with specific interests and needs.
LinkedIn has a ton of features that you can be using to market your business, from the social networking features like sharing content and making connections to advance search and premium accounts. And when we say easy ways, we really mean easy. These features are all just waiting for you to take advantage of, and require little expertise or time to get started.
Company pages are an excellent tool for marketing with LinkedIn, but you’ve got to be intentional about how you build your page to attract your ideal clients. Our visual guide will help you create the perfect page for your company and enhance your online presence and social impact.
If you’re ready to expand your digital reach and start using LinkedIn to its full potential, Evenbound can help. We have a lot of experience with LinkedIn, content creation, inbound marketing, and PPC advertising, and we can create a digital strategy that gets results. Get in touch and let’s get started.
B2B Manufacturers: How to Get More Social Media Followers, and Why You Need ‘Em
If you’re not on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn these days, it’s almost like you don’t exist. Nowadays, social media is just as crucial for B2B companies, including industrial manufacturers, as it is for B2C companies. Sure, social media marketing seems more intuitive for B2Cs, but the truth is that nearly everyone is using social media, which means that your customers, and the decision-makers at those companies, are using social media.
And just having a profile for your business isn’t going to cut it. If a page exists on the internet and no one reads it, does your company get more leads? No, it doesn’t. That’s why you need to invest in your social media presence and attract followers on the platforms you use. Your social media presence will create the network where you can share and promote your company and your digital content, attracting and converting leads.
LinkedIn: A Great Place to Start
If you read our blog regularly, you know how we feel about LinkedIn. For B2B manufacturers, it’s the social media platform you should be using to reach your potential clients, for a variety of reasons; most importantly, it’s where your target audience is networking and researching suppliers. Getting more followers on your company LinkedIn page requires that you regularly post relevant, insightful content specific to your industry and your potential customers’ pain points. You can even target each of your different types of client with specially tailored showcase pages (read more about how showcase pages work for B2B marketing here).
On your personal LinkedIn account, you can search for specific people in specific positions at the companies you’re looking to make clients out of, and then connect with those people. Joining discussion groups relevant to your industry and sharing your knowledge and expertise is also a great way to establish your credibility and gain new followers. For more on LinkedIn, read our 6 Easy Ways to Make LinkedIn Work For Your B2B Marketing Strategy.
Social Media Campaigns
Another critical aspect of gaining, retaining, and making leads out of your social media followers is by executing targeted social media campaigns. Just like other advertising campaigns, strategy is necessary to make your efforts successful. Well-planned social media campaigns will help you accomplish goals such as increasing brand awareness and promoting your digital content. To do this, you’ll need to determine the exact type of client you want to attract, and target them specifically with content matching their place in the buyer’s journey and their needs and pain points, through indirect (social sharing) and direct (PPC ad promotion) means.
Don’t fall behind the competition by neglecting your social media presence, either by failing to have one at all or by not investing time into engaging with your followers and working to attract new ones. If you’d like to learn more about social media marketing for B2Bs, or digital marketing in general, you should talk with the team at Evenbound.
Be sure to check out our other posts on how to make social media work for your B2B, such as this one on LinkedIn Ads and B2B Marketing, as well as the free case study below, that shows how paid search and social worked wonders for one B2B:
By now, you know that content marketing is an important part of any company’s inbound marketing strategy, even for B2B manufacturers who in the past may have done very little marketing at all. But it’s not enough to just do content marketing. Here are some things you should be doing to improve and simplify your content marketing strategy for success:
Create the Right Content
While it can seem like quantity is hugely important in inbound marketing, especially when it comes to SEO and generating organic search traffic—the quantity of keywords you use and the number of times you use them—but as ever, quality reigns supreme. Rather than trying to churn out as much content as possible, instead focus on creating good content that is relevant to your audience and provides value. That’s what will make a successful B2B content marketing strategy. (Here are 5 steps to successful content for industrial and manufacturing B2Bs.)
Use the Right Platforms
You can create amazing content, but if your target audience doesn’t see it, it will all be for naught. You need to meet your audience where they are, so to speak, to get your content under their noses. This means using social media advertising and promotion, and for manufacturers and other B2Bs, this will likely mean LinkedIn, the professional networking site. Not only can you connect with industry leaders and potential customers, you can use LinkedIn ads to target very specifically your ideal clients. (Read more on LinkedIn ads and B2B marketing and easy ways to make LinkedIn work for your B2B marketing strategy!)
Video is one of the most compelling media, especially when one considers how we consume media daily: in quick snippets, on smartphones. For a B2B content marketing strategy, video is a way to demonstrate your capabilities. Sure, your product may not be more exciting than it is practical, but what your product does or enables or how it’s made can be fascinating and compelling to engineers and your potential customers.
Have a Plan
Don’t just write content willy-nilly and think that you’ll start attracting tons of new visitors to your site and acquiring new leads. Content marketing isn’t about attrition, it’s about strategy. It’s about creating the right content (see above) at the right time, promoting that on the best platform, integrating the right keywords, and more. And those things aren’t happy accidents. Performing research on the keywords and topics that will interest your target audience and that audience’s needs and behaviors is critical, and your B2B content marketing strategy should be using that information to ensure your content and delivery are as effective as possible.
A well-planned B2B content marketing strategy that is based on extensive research and combines compelling content with targeted promotion can enhance your marketing efforts manifold. If you want to improve upon your existing content marketing efforts, we should talk.
If your B2B has a website or social media accounts (or both), you know how frustrating it can be when your number of views, likes, shares, and comments is low. You’ve probably tried a lot of things, but it’s clear that you’re not seeing the results you want. It’s not easy to increase engagement, especially as a B2B, when your products and services lack mass consumer appeal. Nevertheless, there are still a few more things you can do to increase engagement with your B2B social media and website.
We love LinkedIn. We talk about LinkedIn all the time on this blog. Why? Because it’s the most effective social network for B2Bs. If you want audience engagement, LinkedIn is the place to get it because that’s where your audience is; after all, your product or service is targeted toward the needs of a specific business need or industry. With LinkedIn, you can reach potential leads in a variety of ways: sharing relevant industry news and content, creating and sharing your original content (through LinkedIn’s publishing platform or by sharing your blog content), engaging with the pages of leads, and targeting leads through LinkedIn ads.
We weren’t kidding about loving LinkedIn. To use your LinkedIn presence as effectively as possible, check out our other posts on LinkedIn for B2Bs:
People love to talk, whether in person or online. So, to increase engagement with your site or social media, you need to get people talking. Okay, you might say, about what? My product isn’t flashy or exciting. No matter how unsexy or mundane your product may be, you can still create content that engages your audience. How? By creating content that is relevant to your customers’ needs.
If your company manufacturers a metal component that goes inside of small appliances, rather than focusing on the product, focus on your customers’ needs relating to your product. Maybe they need to know how to find the best supplier of metal components—you can provide them with that information, which is relevant and interesting to them, which in turn will encourage them to engage with your site or social media account and possibly even become a lead. Don’t just create content, post it to your blog, and expect to get a ton of views, though. Make sure you’re sharing your content on social media (hint, hint, LinkedIn) so that people can see it and engage with it.
Engage with Other Industry Leaders
Cultivating an effective digital presence is about more than just producing and sharing content. Another way to increase engagement is to engage with others. When people comment on the blog posts or articles that you share, respond to their comments. When someone in your industry posts interesting content, like it, share it or comment on it. If your ideal client is shares industry news, engaging with their post is a good way to start a conversation with them. It’s also a good way to enhance your reputation as an informed, engaged member of your industry.
We know that it’s not easy to increase website and social media engagement as a B2B, but getting people talking on the right platforms can really make a difference. Are you interested in increasing engagement with your B2B website and social media profiles? Evenbound can help you enhance your digital marketing strategy and increase engagement from leads and future clients.Contact us online to start the conversation.
For more information about how Evenbound can increase social media engagement and digital leads for B2Bs, be sure to check out the case study below:
When it comes to digital marketing, you’ve got a lot of options to choose from to drive sales. There’s paid advertising on engines like Google, there’s paid advertising on social media sites, there are ways to drive organic traffic through your website, and there are equally as many ways to drive engagement through social media.
With all the options, it’s tough to figure out which methods might be right for your company, and how much time and money to invest in each.
For this blog post, we’re going to focus primarily on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SMM (Social Media Marketing), the two free ways to drive traffic and boost sales. We get the most questions about these two digital marketing methods, likely because they’re the cheapest ways to get eyes on your site, and they’re the two methods that are the most proven.
What’s Best: SEO or SEM?
Most often, people want to know which method is right for them: SEO or SMM. And it makes sense. You don’t want to spend time or money on a digital marketing method that won’t produce the best ROI for your company. But unfortunately, a solution isn’t as easy as picking one or the other. No matter what it is you’re selling, a quality digital marketing strategy makes use of both SEO and SMM strategies. Think of it like this:
SEO is the bones of your operation. First and foremost, you’re catering to the robots that run the Google algorithm, because without their favor, your site will never see the light of day.
SMM is the skin, hair, and makeup. It’s what gives your company a personality, and it’s ultimately what attracts actual people to your website when they trust you as an authority in your industry.
Unfortunately, one can’t exist without the other. If you think about it, when you offer deck repairs and someone types in “deck repair near me” into Google, it’s quality SEO that’s going to make sure your website pops up on the first page of search results. But if you’re looking to get the word out about your deck repair company, social media marketing is what is going to build your following, and let people know that you exist in the first place, before they even head to Google.
So, it’s important to remember that the question isn’t “which one should I use”, but “how should I combine my SEO and SMM efforts to produce the greatest results for me?”
And that question isn’t as easily answered.
Getting Started with SEO
If you’re just starting out, we always recommend you focus on basic SEO. Make sure your site is at least visible to Google, because if Google can’t see your site, no one can see your site. For more info on SEO basics, be sure to check out our Complete Guide to Inbound Marketing.
Again, SEO is the bones of your operation, and you need to have quality SEO to have a foundation where you can drive your social media marketing finds. Make sure your website is functional and up-to-date. It should be responsive and user-friendly, so people who make it to your site don’t just bounce right off.
Then focus on creating content that will help you rank for a number of keywords important to you company. Again, you have to rank for people to see your site. Social media marketing is an awesome way to raise awareness about your company, but it’s important to remember that it doesn’t contribute to positive rankings in any way, and it doesn’t typically get more eyes on your site.
SEO typically draws fewer people in, but it’s more effective at converting the people who do make it to your site to customers. So developing SEO content means developing content that solves pain points, and targets keywords. With a base of quality content like this, you can begin to start SMM.
Adding in Quality SMM
Remember that SMM doesn’t mean just creating a Facebook page. Facebook is a graveyard of well-intentioned business pages that no one ever posted to. Just because you have a Facebook page doesn’t mean you’re going to get followers.
SMM means creating a Facebook page, and creating community around that. Focus on generating content that makes people want to interact with you, rather than buy something from you.
If you build or remodel homes, post pictures of your projects and invite people to comment. If you’re a lawyer, consider posting fun infographics that breakdown complex legal concepts into easy bite-sized pieces of info, and ask for people to tell you if it makes the concept easier for them to understand. Remember that the primary goal of SMM is to create a community, rather than sell things.
SMM is quick and fleeting. Someone sees your social media post on Facebook or Twitter, and they share it or like it. Most often, SMM doesn’t actually send many people to your site. It functions more to create a community around your company, increasing your reach and alerting this online community that you exist. The goal of SMM is to build a presence that can later be harnessed for sales. Search engine optimization has a much more transactional approach of getting eyes on your page.
SEO is focused on converting people who do eventually wind up on your site, while SMM works to make sure people know your site and your business exist, even if they don’t go to it.
SEO + SMM = The Ultimate Win
SMM functions as a sort of long game. You’re developing a community around your company’s social media presence, and once that community comes to trust you as an authority in your field, and someone they genuinely enjoy interacting with, they’ll convert to clients when they eventually need your services.
SEO ensures that when there are people who need your services right now, your site is discoverable. A combination of SMM and SEO ensure you’re playing on both fields: the immediate, right now leads, and the long-game: that social media community who will eventually become lifetime clients.
Any quality digital marketing strategy combines both search engine optimization and social media marketing, to ensure you’re catering to both the robots who shape the digital platform your site lives on, and the actual people you need to buy your product and service.
We get that digital marketing strategies are complex, often confusing concepts. If you have more questions on properly harnessing the powers of both SEO and SMM, don’t hesitate to reach out. Evenbound has been in the game for years now, and we’d be happy to help you figure out how to best combine your search engine optimization with your social media marketing strategies.
If you’re not using LinkedIn as part of your marketing strategy, you are missing out on an insane number of leads—LinkedIn is the top lead-generating social network for B2Bs. In addition to creating a company page, connecting with industry professionals, and publishing and promoting engaging content on LinkedIn, you should also be taking advantage of LinkedIn ads to target your ideal clients.
What’s a LinkedIn ad like?
If you’re an active LinkedIn user, you’ve likely seen LinkedIn ads in the sidebar or underneath the navigation bar, and in many ways they’re similar to the ads you’ll see on other social networks or on Google partner site: ad copy and a link, oftentimes with a logo or other small image or video. LinkedIn offers both text-and-image ads and video ads, as well as some larger ad formats, on a PPC (pay-per-click) or cost-per impression basis.
As with any digital ad, a good LinkedIn ad will have compelling copy that encourages viewers to click, upon which they are directed to a landing page where, ideally, they’ll convert to leads.
So what’s so great about LinkedIn ads?
LinkedIn has over 450 million members, and it captures information from these users on their on job titles, industries, company names, and more, all of which can be useful in targeting users who are potential clients. LinkedIn ads can be very specifically targeted by criteria that is relevant to your marketing strategy, industries, companies, company sizes, job titles, job functions, seniority, location, and more. According to the 2016 Salesforce Advertising Index Report, the audience of a LinkedIn ad has two times the buying power of the average web audience. What this means is that you can put your ads in front of the exact people who will have use for your product or service, and will have purchasing power, in a way that you can’t target them on any other platform.
Additionally, LinkedIn provides reporting on ad campaigns that includes aggregated data on who clicked on your ads by job title, industry, and seniority. This information is extremely useful in determining the effectiveness of your ads; is your target audience clicking? If not, you can use this information to make adjustments to your campaign.
What does this mean for you?
Using LinkedIn ads can generate leads like crazy. For example, if your company does plastic injection molding of components for automotive interiors, you can target your LinkedIn ad to product designers and sourcing specialists at the Big Three automotive OEMs. You’ll maximize your PPC budget by reducing clicks from users with no lead potential, since your ad won’t be reaching those users, unlike in paid search, where your ad is tied to a search term that is not necessarily completely specific to your target audience, and you’ll know that your target audience is seeing your ad, instead of trying to predict their search behavior.
LinkedIn is an essential component of any B2B marketing strategy in the digital age. If you’re interested in enhancing your LinkedIn presence, we have tons of resources on marketing with LinkedIn, including 6 Ways LinkedIn Can Work For Your B2B Marketing Strategy and our free guide to creating the perfect LinkedIn page for B2B manufacturers, located below:
If you have more questions about how your company can use LinkedIn to generate more leads, or you’re interested in expanding your digital marketing strategy, let’s talk.