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8 common mistakes B2B companies make on social media

B2B companies are kicking ass at social media. Still, because B2B adoption of the channel was generally slower than for B2C firms, many B2B companies make avoidable mistakes on social media platforms.

Let’s be honest, possible social media pitfalls are everywhere, and your company could be doing more damage to its reputation – and consequently its sales – than good.

Is your B2B firm making any of the following avoidable social media mistakes?

1.      Posting boring, inauthentic content: New and engaging content is probably the most important component of a successful social media strategy. There’s nothing more alienating than a rarely updated blog, or a month-old tweet on your homepage. If you’re not creating new and exciting content, then you’re not generating leads, you’re not getting found online, your content isn’t being shared, and you’re not getting new customers. In short, nobody is talking about you! Blog several times a week, tweet several times a day (ideally), and increase your traffic because of it.

2.      Neglecting outside content: You’ll exhaust your marketing team – especially a relatively small one – if you expect them to produce fresh content (blog posts, e-books, videos, etc.) all the time. There’s no harm in sharing content you have not produced yourself. In fact, content partnerships can be hugely beneficial for your B2B company. If there’s a tweet you think your followers would benefit from, retweet it. If there’s an interesting article that matches the overall message of your own blog, share it. 

3.      Forsaking traditional marketing: Social media is all about integration across different platforms, and within your organization. Successful social media marketing can’t happen in a vacuum. That means it should be integrated with customer service, product development, sales, etc. Social media marketing is really only one player on a team. Make sure nothing happens in isolation: whoever is in charge of social should share it with all members your company’s team. Consider creating an editorial calendar (or using the template found here), it’s probably the best way to keep everyone on the same page.

4.      Ignoring data: Everything that happens on social media is measurable. Every click, every like, every follower, every article read – and how much of it, even – is obtainable data. Not measuring the impact of social media is really not doing justice to amazing tools, like Hubspot, that are available. Your B2B company can track exactly how successful different social media platforms are, and inform you about what you need to do differently.

5.      Assuming there is no market:  Know that your B2B firm’s market – no matter how small – is probably active across different social media platforms, even if they’re there for personal reasons. Your competitors are probably there too.

6.      Starting too quickly, in too many places: Start small. There is no need to produce a staggering amount of content right from the start or setup accounts on 5 platforms. It will be detrimental to put together a large number of neglected social media platforms, and half-hearted blog posts. Ultimately, you should be updating your blog three, even four times a week. But that doesn’t mean you need to start at that pace – one post a week is fine at first. As your social media strategy develops, aim for a healthy combination of quality and quantity.

7.      Expecting instant gratification: A successful social media strategy takes time to implement – much more than you would expect. Budget enough time, because you’ll need it. And you likely won’t see instant dividends. But the endeavor is hugely rewarding if you don’t take it lightly.

8.      Forgetting about SEO: Search engine optimization is always an important way of generating leads. If you forget about SEO, then you’re not being found as often as you should. Build a list of keywords you use in your social media content, and make sure to include them in your headlines and opening paragraphs.

Don’t be overwhelmed! There are many pitfalls for B2B companies integrating social media into their marketing mix, but these can be dodged with a little forward thinking.

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