It’s Time to Get Serious About Your Social Media Lead Generation
If you don’t have a clear strategy in place to streamline day-to-day operations and maximize your ROI, you’ll end up investing a lot of time and money with nothing to show for it.
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Using social media for B2B lead generation is hardly “news”. Nine out of 10 B2B companies use social media to engage with customers and nurture prospects through the sales funnel. Nearly half (43%) have acquired a customer via LinkedIn.
What is news? Despite being more active on social media, most businesses aren’t sure if these activities are useful. Half of social media marketers don’t measure their success, reports HubSpot. More than half of B2B companies site ROI measurement as their biggest source of frustration with social marketing.
Why the frustration? B2B companies continue to get bogged down in day-to-day social media management, which makes it difficult to step back and see the bigger strategic picture.
B2B social media marketing is different from B2C and requires a different approach. Raising brand awareness and building brand loyalty are two primary goals with B2C social media. Yes, thought leadership is essential for building your brand.
But if you want to drive more conversions, you need to be focused on more than just thought leadership. With B2B social media marketing, you need a clear plan to move your prospects through the sales funnel with content that nurtures the leads and drives conversions. If your company lacks automation, this lead nurturing process can be seriously time-consuming.
Here’s how to break free from day-to-day management woes and supercharge your social media lead generation:
1. Automate workflow to qualify prospects
You already use a service like Hootsuite or Buffer to pre-schedule posts, right? Take that automation to the next level by qualifying candidates.
Services like Socedo will automatically discover prospects in real time, classify their place in your buying cycle, and determine whether their buyer persona is a good fit for your business.
Unlike traditional lead lists, services like Socedo use real-time social behaviors (like social listening, described below), to qualify leads. The result: you’re able to have meaningful conversations with multiple audience segments and stakeholders, uncover actionable insights about your leads, and use these insights to further qualify leads and move them through your sales funnel. No more blindly tossing out Tweets and hoping something sticks!
2. Get serious about social listening and social selling
Social media is a two-way channel, not a broadcast platform. The true power of social media is reaching the right people at the right time with insightful content. This moves prospects through the sales funnel, nurturing leads, turning leads into clients, and turning one-time clients into repeat customers.
But how do you know when a lead or client needs content to move them through the sales funnel? Your solution: social listening. Sprout Social defines social listening as “the process of tracking conversations around specific phrases, words or brands, and then leveraging these mentions to discover opportunities or create content for those audiences.”
Tracking conversations and brand engagement can also help your business discover your brand ambassadors. These are the satisfied clients that like your business so much they’re telling the world about it via social media. (Or at least re-sharing your content or giving you a shout-out in their Twitter posts.) Rather than just broadcasting information, take the time to listen to who is talking about your business and industry and what they’re saying.
3. Enhance lead data tracking for smarter marketing
Do you know what your leads are saying about your business, your industry, or their particular needs? If you found your prospect on social media, you may already be listening closely to their needs.
But if you found a lead via email marketing or a white paper download, that lead could be siloed off in a CRM system. If you aren’t syncing your social media lead generation with your current CRM/marketing automation program, you’re working twice as hard for no reason.
Integrating lead generation with a marketing automation platform like Salesforce, Marketo and Hubspot will make it easier to follow up with leads immediately via social media. Most importantly, you can use the power of social listening to identify which information your prospects needs and then send use this information to improve your email nurturing programs.
Social media marketing works. But like any marketing tactic, if you don’t have a clear strategy in place to streamline day-to-day and maximize your ROI, you’ll end up investing a lot of time and money with nothing to show for it.
Streamline your social media marketing by using tools that simplify management and automate processes so you can focus on big-picture strategy and engagement.
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