The enigmatic power of social media as a lead generation channel is still one of the most pondered upon concepts in modern day marketing. On the surface, it looks downright easy: you just set up accounts on multiple social networking sites, maintain a solid stream of content posts, and voila, you’re good to go.
But why are there “social media experts”? What makes them special, and what do they know that ordinary marketers don’t?
The straightforward façade of social media
Social media marketing is a basic B2B lead generation process: online marketers produce content that they can distribute on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networking sites. They also maintain business personas to accommodate client inquiries and necessary interactions. Is it rocket science?
First of all, there is a sizable layer that divides business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing. B2C content is usually geared towards selling, while B2B content is tailored to sell as well as to inform.
Consequently, marketers cannot just post average articles on their social media profiles unless it meets the technical requirements that make it a business type of content. Because of the nature of the audience in the B2B world, the type and manner of content must be business appropriate.
Timing, relevance and professionalism
With B2C social media profiles, marketers can just sustain a flow of content posts without really thinking about when they post it. Huge portions of the consumer sector are on social media, and it’s never really necessary to worry about time intervals and view statistics.
Now, are we inclined to believe that B2B prospects are active on social networking sites? While LinkedIn is a no-brainer, Facebook and Twitter are still – even to this day – questionable.
That means timing and relevance are definitely important in producing content for business professionals. You can’t expect them to be on these sites all the time because (obviously) they have a lot of more important things to do. And whenever they do visit the site, marketers also need to make sure that they would read what they see.
Remember, not all businessmen find “viral” and “perky” content as amusing. Some would prefer a straightforward and more professional approach when it comes to scouting for articles online.
Not a walk in the park
It’s safe to say that social media marketing is no easy task, especially when your lead generation campaign allocates considerable time and resources for this channel. In the end, it all boils down to fully understanding your niche targets and using the power of social media to attract the right people at the right time.