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The days when B2B marketers snubbed Facebook and Twitter are long gone. In fact, social media marketing is far from a new trend anymore — even in the world of wholesale.
According to a 2014 study by the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, social media is the number one content marketing tactic used by B2B marketers.
In addition, 81% of these professionals are using Facebook to attract new leads as well as retain existing customers. It is more than clear than ever that Facebook is definitely turning into a key tool for B2B marketers and wholesalers everywhere.
Let’s take a look at how Facebook can benefit your wholesale business and effective ways to use it.
Why Facebook Is Integral to Your B2B Marketing Strategy
There are many reasons why B2B marketers should strive to have a solid presence on Facebook. Here are the two of the most important ones:
Brand building and reputation
Not being on Facebook means you’re not only missing out on having a presence in the largest social media network in the world, but also disregarding one of the most effective ways to position your brand in the marketplace. Furthermore, Facebook is actually the social media channel that B2B decision-makers are most comfortable with when researching product-oriented information — at least according to UK-based firms Hotwire and Vanson Bourne.
In their 2016 joint study, 24% of B2B decision-makers cited Facebook as their “social network of choice” for this type of research.
Lead generation and targeted advertising
With 1.55 billion users on Facebook, your audience is inevitably going to be reached through this channel. This, of course, means that it’s a great tool for lead generation – and it’s free! Even more so, if you’re willing to put your hand in your pocket for some extra cash, the famous social network has developed a great paid ad platform to help marketers reach potential prospects.
6 Things You Should Consider Sharing on Facebook
Although you may now be convinced that Facebook needs to become part of your marketing mix, you may also be uncertain as to what type of content to use in order to connect with existing customers and create relationships with potential prospects. Here are six ways to use Facebook to your advantage (and to the advantage of your business)!
1. Display your goods.
Facebook is mainly a visual social network. In fact, posts containing images get almost 2.3 times more engagement than ones containing links. This means that the “king” of social networks is the perfect channel for you to share photos of your products for existing and prospective customers to see. It can also be a great medium for you to announce and display new or expected arrivals to your B2B online store. And you can even showcase your products by showing them in retail stores around your city, your country, or even the world.
2. Make an offer (no one can refuse).
Are you offering special discounts on certain products or product categories? Post it on Facebook! It’s literally the fastest way to let your customers know about it. In addition, the platform’s paid ads allow you to reach potential customers by tailoring your promotions by targeting specific audiences in terms of demographics, industry, location, etc. In this respect, you can segment your database into certain demographics and promote your offers to different buyer personas. For example, let’s say you want to promote two different offers in two different product categories. With Facebook ads, you can easily split your database so that one-half of your target audience receives news about one offer and the other half receives the other offer.
3. Show off your customers.
Did you recently land a new retailer? Why not share this on social media? Whether your new client is a big fish or a small one, nothing says more about your brand than a continuously growing list of customers. So get on Facebook and put the word of your new collaborations out there for the entire (wholesale) world to see!
4. Share your spot in a new market.
Have you recently opened your digital store to a new country? Share it on Facebook! It will help increase your brand’s reputation among your existing customers because it’s a testament to your business’s reach and growth. Also, this type of news is a great vehicle for lead generation: through it, you will be able to connect with prospects active in the new market you have just started doing business in.
5. Announce your… homecoming.
Facebook is a great way to let both your existing and potential customers know if you’re going to be part of an upcoming trade show in their city or country. You can even invite them to come by your booth for an in-person meeting. Event marketing is a great way to foster personal relationships with your existing customers, give value to your prospective customers, and then leverage both. And Facebook is one of the most cost-efficient and easy ways to share news about upcoming events you’re going to be attending.
6. Share your media exposure.
Traditional media and press coverage is still important for B2B decision-makers.
In fact, according to Hotwire & Vanson Bourne’s joint survey, the majority of B2B decision-makers report that press coverage in favoured publications contributed to them short-listing vendors.
Social media is most influential in the early stages of B2B vendor identification and shortlisting. This means that sharing the media exposure and press coverage you have received on Facebook may actually get you closer to sealing a new deal with a prospective customer.
Let’s get social!
Facebook marketing for B2B companies is all about building solid, long-term, meaningful relationships with your buyers. All you need to do is to sow your seeds smartly and you’ll soon be reaping major benefits.