B2B companies will attest that leads are the likelihood of their business. They help companies find products, increase revenue, and achieve business goals. Thus, coming up with a fresh ideology on how to further improve lead generation is crucial in today’s business landscape. Social media lead generation is a proven marketing strategy for building relationships. However, the adoption of social media by B2B companies has been relatively slow, with concerns regarding proper execution. This is due to the leading struggle when leveraging social media as a lead generation tool.
But today, more organizations have integrated social media into their marketing strategy that too particularly for promotion purposes. There still remains a large contingency of marketers who have not considered or implemented social media. Many are still in doubt about social media. They must think of how including it in your existing B2B lead generation strategies could:
- Create brand awareness
- Encourage social sharing
- Drive inbound leads
- Contribute towards an overflowed sales funnel
Social media lead generation vs Lead Nurturing
Many marketers can not differentiate between lead generation and lead nurturing concepts. Here is a brief explanation of each and why they are important to you.
Social media lead generation
A lead is simply an address, phone number, or ID that helps marketers target their audience. Usually, marketers ask for a name or an email address to market to the users. Social media is a highly relevant way to gather some leads. You can do both types of marketing including paid and organic on a social media platform.
Marketers can also promote content through groups, communities, or through sponsored or native advertisements. But leads alone do not make a difference unless you nurture them well. Here is what Lead nurturing is.
Social media lead nurturing
A lead you gather through any possible medium is usually cold. You need to make them warm before you can market to them. Therefore, most marketers nurture social media leads by taking them through a special funnel. You can read about marketing automation and tools here.
The social media channels also allow nurturing leads by some smart remarketing strategies. Marketers can collect leads and remarket to them to turn them warm. They can use polls, forms, videos right on the platform to send personalized messages. This helps nurture leads in a better way.
Picking the proper channels for Social media lead generation
You can utilize numerous social media platforms simultaneously to increase effectiveness and outreach provided that you use each one correctly.
LinkedIn is where most professionals, industry leaders, and even your competitors congregate. Engaging with LinkedIn can be beneficial in building relationships with your prospects via daily updates without necessarily spamming them. Consequently, putting more of your lead generation efforts into monitoring and maintaining this platform makes proper sense.
Another social media platform to consider is Twitter with millions of people on this network. You can deliver specific information in a short yet shareable message, along with links in real-time. While it may not be as influential as LinkedIn, it can engage with communities and amplify your business presence.
Engagement with your brand followers is also possible on Twitter. Frequency plays a crucial role in getting favorable results due to the short attention span of search engine crawlers. And, also by the continual updates by everyone else in the network.
Some B2B companies do not use Facebook for lead generation. However, there are still a good amount of B2B corporations that use it to further showcase their organization’s culture. You can publish more detailed information about particular products, services, events, and other relevant updates. Also, you can complement this with video and images too.
Pinterest and Instagram
Aside from all these networks, there are still other social media channels that B2B marketers can use. Instagram and Pinterest have their own advantages and disadvantages. Some will work better than others depending upon your company’s industry and positioning. So, you need to identify the best ones to support your lead generation goals. This is crucial to getting the most out of your promotional efforts.
It is important to keep in mind that no social media platform will be effective without a solid content strategy. Creating content that converts is the key to any social media campaign to be successful. It also helps to have a social media lead management tool to keep track of the source of your leads. Also, which channels are performing the best. Marketing automation is here to help, so make sure to take advantage of it.
Social media lead generation using LinkedIn
B2B companies looking to target decision-makers and businesses come to rely on LinkedIn for lead generation. Out of all social media channels used by top-performing companies, LinkedIn is the most used. It sits at 88% against Twitter at 53%, and Facebook at 42%.
Also, many businesses say that LinkedIn is the most effective. Furthermore, 80% of Social media lead generation for marketers came from LinkedIn. Thus, making it the outright best channel option for generating leads.
LinkedIn lead generation tactics
Start finding and generating leads by joining groups where your prospects are hanging out. Once accepted as a member, search for your fellow associates and reach out to users with job titles and interests. Such titles make those individuals ideal prospects. Software like Oktopost is a social media marketing platform that can turn your LinkedIn groups into a compiled lead list.
You can also create your own LinkedIn groups. It is important to ensure that your group name is something that displays value to your prospects. It must give them a reason to wanting to join your group. From there, be active and build a favorable image for your company. You can do this by becoming a thought leader or expert in your industry.
Traditional LinkedIn advertisements appear on the sidebar of LinkedIn’s homepage, user profiles, and groups. These advertisements are similar to Google AdWords or search engine advertisements. They contain only a headline, a picture, and a small amount of copy content. You can also optimize these advertisements for CPM and CPC.
Linkedin Company Page
Your LinkedIn company page is a great avenue for generating leads. Make the most of that space by developing your page so that it compels users to visit your company’s website. Remember to structure your company page in such a way that it leads up to a conversion action.
Here are the steps to create a company page that helps you generate the leads:
- Use an attractive, high-quality header image that advertises one of your latest products.
- In your company’s description, use clear and compelling language that encourages prospects to find out more about your company. Do not feel satisfied with merely writing about your business location or contact details. Grab their attention with the copy that will generate interest and invite them to visit your website.
- Post relevant updates on your feed that speak directly to your target audience. Doing so increases the chances of prospects clicking through to your page, looking to find out more about your company. Include infographics, blog updates, and curated content that appeal to whosoever you wish to attract towards your brand.
For more qualified leads, you can use LinkedIn’s sponsored InMail to reach out to users via their LinkedIn message inbox. Price for Sponsored InMail is based on an auction for the particular audience you are targeting. However, it will vary widely depending on how many other advertisers are trying to reach those prospects as well. Sponsored InMail can fully brand up with your company creatives. It can come from your company itself or individual employees.
LinkedIn advanced search
LinkedIn Advanced Search is an excellent tool for finding leads and gaining access to decision-makers on the network. The best feature is that you do not have to go through gatekeepers to connect with decision-makers. Moreover, you get to do this all for free. Using it is very easy. Here are the steps you can follow:
- From the LinkedIn header menu, just click the search people icon, and then the advanced option.
- For the best results, proceed to the Advanced People Search to filter your search according to different factors. These factors are location, current company, title, industry, school, language, and non-profit interests amongst other categories. Do keep in mind that the bigger and better your personal network, the greater your chance of finding warm prospects.
- Then save your search results. You will receive weekly updates that show new LinkedIn members who meet your search criteria and updated their profile. You can then use these findings to generate leads.
LinkedIn lead generation tips
As a professional networking website, your company page plays an important role in establishing relationships with potential buyers. It broadens your network on LinkedIn itself. LinkedIn advises that you follow up a five-step process based on social media best practices. It is to ensure that you build effective relationships on the network. The steps are as follows:
- Establish your presence
- Attract followers
- Engage followers
- Amplify your message through your network
- Analyze results and refine your strategy
Producing an assortment of content on a regular basis is a best practice not only on LinkedIn. It is also a smart practice on other social media channels too. Aside from the usual company updates, crafting unique content is crucial as well. You can do this with the inclusion of a clear subtle CTA linking back to your site.
This encourages sharing among connections resulting in increased brand awareness and audience outreach. SEO optimization is essential too, especially on LinkedIn, since Google displays LinkedIn content in its search results.
You should consider your LinkedIn company’s page as an extension of your brand. Thus, the importance of compelling branding from visuals dimensions all the way to the text. For instance, Google’s Search Engine results pages should contain the first 156 characters of your company page’s description. So having SEO-rich text is important as it is the first thing to display on search results.
Just like any marketing campaign analytics is also important on LinkedIn to efficiently assesses the performance of your efforts. To gather information on how you can further tweak the campaign in the future. You should test and track all clicks and interactions from the company page so that measurement and analytics are possible.
Social Media Lead Generation Using Twitter
Twitter is useful for leveraging followers who are willing to share information about you and your business with others. However, converting new visitors require some strategizing and segmentation. Several new features such as Lead Generation cards have come up. Due to these, it is now easier to capture data without having to go to another website. It sounds a lot like Facebook’s Lead advertisements it is because it works in a pretty similar way.
Twitter lead generation tactics
Twitter Lead Generation Cards
Lead Generation Cards have been successful in decreasing the average cost-per-click while increasing the number of click-throughs. It will be making a highly efficient lead generation tool for B2B marketers.
A lead generation card is a form that you can attach to your tweet. This way followers can send you their contact details with a single click. This makes it an effective lead generation tool which has shown to have a 996% improvement in acquiring leads. Also, a 500% reduction in cost-per-lead from Twitter itself.
To reap the benefits of this free lead generation tool specify your offer and include a CTA. And also some professional quality images that stand out. Promoting using hashtags that your audience members also use to make sure your outreach is targeted. Another tactic to trust is to pin your LGC to your Twitter profile so it gets the maximum possible exposure.
Twitter profile page
The profile page is also an opportunity to generate leads as you promote your brand and message. Use a custom Twitter background of your business, to begin with. And then add a CTA or link back to your website.
Ensure that once a user visits your profile they immediately know how to acquire information through clicking on appropriate links. Your Twitter profile should also include your company’s website URL. However, if you decide to do this, make sure your website’s homepage has lead generation capabilities. And also if it has an optimization to drive leads.
Twitter Advanced Search
Twitter Advanced Search option is also an effective lead generation tool. It enables B2B businesses to dig deeper into conversations giving them insights into industry trends. Information gathered here may include recent trending information as well as people who could be important to your business. They include customers, thought leaders, influencers, or media analysts.
You must leverage the gathered data from Twitter Advanced Search to determine engagement levels within your industry. Also, you must identify the relationships of your competitors with influencers and the trends they are covering. Twitter Search is really a way for businesses to find out what the relevant people are saying and to whom.
This all information comes in form of posts that the public can access readily. Ultimately you can use all of this information as a reference to improve your lead generation efforts in the future.
Twitter Lead generation tips
Segmenting the audience
Segmenting your audience is a very crucial task. Begin searching for relevant hashtags to find and connect only with associated B2B organizations that make up your target audience. Twitter is a great tool for targeting the right audiences. It provides the knowledge you need to increase your chances of accurately sending the right messages to the right people.
Setting up a schedule
Set aside a few hours per day for Twitter. You do not have to be active the whole time. However, you do need to find out the best times and for posting to reach the largest active. One easier way to do this is by checking Twitter Analytics to see when your tweets get the most exposure.
There is 14% more engagement on weekdays than on weekends on Twitter for B2B. While tweets posted at 5 pm earn a higher amount of retweets than any other time. So keep in mind to set your schedule, and stick to it in order to maximize message exposure. Also, note that the best timing depends highly on the geographical location of your target audience. Your targets may live in all parts of the world.
Do not overuse hashtags. Too many hashtags can be distracting, appear to be spam, and ultimately prevent users from clicking on a link. Follow up with leads and respond as quickly as possible, making your attachment more trustworthy and satisfactory. But just do not always be in a hurry to reply. Use professional templates to approach your audience. You never want your grammatical errors to distract your audience from your main context.
Actively seek out potential followers. It is really important to keep your current members engaged. But do not get stuck within your existing community. Find smarter ways to solve problems for those outside your circle. They could be very well turn out to be some of your most loyal followers.
Social media Lead Generation using Facebook
Facebook is an enormous, large, and powerful social media organization. With over a billion users, it captures about 10% of all Internet visits. And each user spends an average of 28 minutes scrolling through their Facebook feed every day. Generating B2B leads via Facebook fickle happens either directly or indirectly.
You can use a lead magnet to capture to directly capture leads. Lead magnets include downloadable eBooks, white papers, tools, or other types of content. These have a link to a landing page where visitors can gain access to them by providing their information.
On the other hand, you can generate indirect leads by using your Facebook for posting featured content. This can be an article, blog post, and a call to action for visitors to find your website. Once the user visits, they have the option to go to a landing page and provide contact details. This is an alternative way of capturing leads. However, it is also an effective means of engaging followers and promoting trust in your brand.
Facebook Lead generation tactics
Facebook Lead advertisements
There are two ways of using advertisements on Facebook. You can use Facebook advertisements leading to an external page. Also, you can do this through an embedding lead advertisement that remains within Facebook. A Facebook advertisement that leads to an external landing page should provide valuable content. You exchange this content in exchange for contact details. The content however becomes priced at zero. But it still has to be interesting enough for your audience to give their personal contact details.
The content is in formats like ebooks, templates, checklists, free online courses, white papers case studies, guides, etc. Your audience can download this content or lead magnet from a landing page. Once someone visits your landing page, they have to fill a form, providing contact details and potentially other personal information.
Facebook page and Status updates
You can use your company’s Facebook page for lead generation by building engagement with your followers and prospects. The best way you can do this is by sharing meaningful content that resonates with your target audience. Facebook has EdgeRank which is an algorithm to determine what appears in a user’s news feed.
Content that gets a lot of shares, likes, and comments will be positioned higher in the news feed. And, obviously, it will achieve a wider reach among your audience. This will encourage more interactions and increase the likelihood of finding your prospects.
Facebook Lead generation tips
Add a call to action to your cover page
The cover photo is the first thing that visitors see on your Facebook page. So choose an image that gives an accurate visual representation of your brand or business. It should be compelling enough to take an action. It should somehow connect with you to find more about your company or product. Change it often, and update your followers of any alteration. Each change shows up on news feeds, increasing your visibility.
Post a variety of content
You must find a balance between posting content for both direct and indirect lead generation. Make sure that whatever you share on your page aligns with your overall goals. There must be a balance of promotional posts and softer posts that seek to drive engagement and overall brand awareness.
Include tracking URLs
This ensures that you can monitor, measure, and analyze lead generation efforts. Use what you have learned from the data to improve your strategy, and do this regularly.
Use the Facebook event planner
You can use this free feature when you create an event for your community. It allows you to invite people to your events for both webinars and face to face. Use relevant images and links on news feeds to grab user attention and encourage participation. The Facebook event planner also provides reminders, which helps to ensure they do not miss your events. It also gives you an idea of what the headcount will be on a particular day itself.
B2B Marketing using Social Media Channels
Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are the leading social media networks for B2B Social media lead generation. However, you must not ignore other rising stars. There are some things you can do in B2B and B2C marketing to leverage the popularity of other social platforms. These networks include Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, etc.
This social media platform currently has about 300 million users and is 25% more engaging than any other social platform. It is a visual platform and B2B companies can use photos and other visually appealing images to promote their business. You can even post a 15-second video which can serve as a teaser to promote your brand’s services.
Instagram Tactics and Tips
Use a unique hashtag by coming up with one that resonates with your brand or business. Use keywords and make use of your business name to monitor and engage with those interacting with your brand. Always make sure to add your personal touch.
Instagram is a great way to humanize your brand and show followers what goes on behind the scenes. Perhaps make sure to use pictures of people working at the company. Product demos, staff activities, and team get-togethers make your company more reliable. Thus it increases trust, engagement, and improves Social media lead generation efforts.
Pinterest is another visually appealing and image-heavy social media site. It is a successful platform for Social media lead generation. Some even claim that a single Pin is worth 78 cents in real-world sales. It is also an overwhelmingly social media site revolving around women topics with 85% of users being female. Pinterest has more than 70 million users and growing exponentially. The users almost spend double the amount of money as Facebook users and three times more than Twitter on purchases.
Pinterest Tactics and Tips
Some B2B companies are not selling a product or offering a service by representing it virtually. With Pinterest, you can have images that align with your company’s culture and branding appropriately.
Try to create useful boards that your target audience will find valuable. High-quality content still rules over everything else. However, you need to translate this into visual content that will help to generate leads. Come up with a Pinboard that contains infographics, data charts, or eBook covers to encourage sharing among users. This will help in driving engagement and generating leads.
Always pin high-quality images, and take note of good compilation. Use bigger images for higher chances of people repinning the stuff. Brighter images are preferable to darker ones.
Keep your descriptions short and concise, somewhere between 100 to 200 characters is ideal. Do remember to provide a link to your landing page so you can direct pinners there for the lead.
Automation using chatbots
Instant messaging and chatbots are in fashion and have become powerful weapons for marketers today. Chatbots allow businesses to connect with their prospects even better than humans can. It also simultaneously lowers the overhead costs. You as a business will not succeed by asking customers to reach out to you in today’s omnichannel world.
Instead, you have to meet them where they already are present. Almost 12% of internet users use Facebook Messenger in any given month. Hence, it is vital to allow consumers to make purchases without leaving the application.
How do chatbots help?
When customers will ask for information about the services you offer, the chatbot will pull the options from your website. They might even come across a product that interests them. Then they can click for more details or choose to browse a more targeted list. For example on clicking on ‘See more like this’, the chatbot displays other similar services.
This is how chatbots act as the best Social media lead generation tools:
- With AI chatbots, businesses can serve up predefined responses to customer queries across social media platforms.
- Bots can efficiently decipher the intent of your visitors. If you know the intent, you know your next action, which acts as the secret ingredient of lead nurturing.
- Chatbots can use previous interaction history to develop a specific profile of each customer. This allows them to deliver personalized messages, content, and product suggestions.
Use social media for content distribution
Content distribution is obviously a part of the equation when it comes to content marketing. It is not enough to create exceptional content, until and unless you do not distribute it wisely. Social media will have a great impact on the content you post.
A strong social media content marketing strategy has the ability to turn your brand into the limelight overnight. If you want to stand out on social media, you need to follow the steps rightly. Then only you can measure your results and fine-tune your strategies over time. Here are some steps to build out a plan that has longevity and helps your brand and business grow:
- Identify your goals
- Planning your social content
- Distribute your content
- Measure the results
Regardless of what social media platform you choose for generating leads, it is important to have a clear strategy. Choose a strategy that suits the best for your target audience and the type of platform you use. For driving new business leads, focusing on LinkedIn and prioritizing content creation will be your best bet.
While LinkedIn is the leading option among B2B companies, you should also consider spreading your efforts across the other platforms. You can get the most out of social media marketing not only today but in the long haul as well.
These articles will help you understanding more: