Posts Tagged ‘Social Media’

It’s Back to School Time! And Not Just for the Kids……

Aug1.Continuing EdIt’s that time of year again….back to school. Excitement at the anticipation of a new learning year is upon us.  But it doesn’t just have to be for the kids… We, as adults, should continually embark on a new journey of learning and self-betterment.

 

Our clients rely on us for advice and counsel on marketing communications techniques and tactics. In order to best perform our jobs and remain a source of information, we seek out ways to hone our skills, learn about the latest trends and discover new ways to employ best practices in our clients’ programs. Our agency could not survive in this digital era if we had stopped trying to improve and innovate while everyone still relied on only print media in the 1980s.

 

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Put your money where your mouth is*

Knowing how far your claims may reach

In doing some research for a client about the role of safety in manufacturing environments, we came across a very interesting piece of news…a major manufacturing company had appointed the first ever safety advocate, designated to oversee worker health and safety. Wow! Nice work protecting the little guy, Corporate America.

 

Of course, we had to know more.

 

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Why Your BtoB Company Should be Using Twitter

Jan2.TwitterIt seems only logical that most business-to-business companies consider LinkedIn to be the most effective and successful social media platform for content marketing; after all, it is built on business relationships and networking. But what about its runner up – Twitter?

According to the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and MarketingProfs’ B2B Content Marketing: 2015 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends – North America, Twitter is the second most common social media platform that BtoB companies use (behind LinkedIn). In addition, 55% of marketers rated Twitter as an effective platform, which is a 5% increase from last year. Still, many BtoB marketers – especially in the manufacturing and engineering industries — believe Twitter won’t be an effective platform for their type of business.

 

Changes 1 Changes 2

 

So why is Twitter so popular?

First, we need to take a look at why marketers love LinkedIn. While it is mainly used for professional networking, LinkedIn can also be used as a social media platform. Just as you would make a status update or post a link to Facebook, the same can be done in LinkedIn. Read the rest of this entry »

The Personal Aspect of Collaboration

networking, relationships, collaboration, business development, personalEmail, cell phones and web-based platforms have made global collaboration as common as using an ATM. It has definitely redefined our models of business efficiency and what can be accomplished in a day, with the limitations of geographic borders and time zones essentially eliminated. Read the rest of this entry »

Create a Compelling Webinar by Following the 3 Ps….

Oct2.webinarWe all know what a webinar is…but, do we all know how to prepare and present a compelling webinar? Read the rest of this entry »

Believing the Hype about Big Data

marketing automation, marketing efficiency, online marketingWe’ll be honest. We were a bit skeptical about marketing automation when we first heard about it. Is this really a trend that will be helpful for B2B marketing strategies?  But knowing we are typically our clients’ first resource to ask about the latest marketing trends, we knew we had to take a closer look and stay “in the know.” Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s Eat Grandma!

punctuation, spelling, grammar, typing, professional typing, professional presentation, professional writing, writingThe comma—how something so simple can change a sentence so much. As in… Let’s eat, grandma! Read the rest of this entry »

Likes me; Likes me not

online content marketing, likes, blog, social media, followers, likes, twitter, facebook, web, onlineWhen did we digress to being 13 year olds concerned with how many “likes” we have gotten?  What does that “like” really mean?  What you should really be asking is: Read the rest of this entry »

As Wayne Gretzky said, “I skate to where the puck is going…”

integrated marketing, marketing strategy, sales funnel, sales marketing, business, business relationships, customer relationships, customer educationLet’s think for a moment about The Great One’s famous quote. He knew that just following the puck, or the market trend in our case, was not going to get him the goal. He needed to head to where the puck was going, arriving at its location before the puck even made it there. Read the rest of this entry »

Why B2B Needs to Get on the Social Media Bandwagon

social media explained, social media donut analogyWhile there is a marked difference between how business-to-consumer tactics relate to business-to-business marketing, sometimes there are lessons that cross over.

One recent example in our modern age is how a business can use social media to communicate with and inform customers and prospects.

Be Visible
Now, of course we’re not talking about building a fan base geared around the latest microchip to hit the engineering scene.

We’re talking about being where the people are—these tools have given marketers new methods of communication that will appeal to a number of different audiences, in the manner in which they chose to obtain their information.

From a customer perspective, you need to be visible in the places they are looking.

The Business Benefit

And from a business perspective, it’s important that a B2B company is the one holding the reigns to harness it’s online brand. (Have you heard the one about the company whose employee claimed its corporate Facebook page…)

The critical component is recognizing the individual uses of each, and how these tools can—or can not—be used effectively to enhance your current marketing program.

One of our favorite infographics still has to be the “Social Media Explained” donut analogy (see image top left)—we wish we could track down the originator and give them a big pat on the back! Or at least buy them a coffee to go with their donut.

What Can Really Be Learned

But in all seriousness, some of these social media sites can be put to productive use in a business environment.

  • Think of Twitter as the latest RSS feed technology, and if you can get editors to retweet your content, you’re on the right track
  • LinkedIn has done a nice job of keeping this professional and credible, with some clients starting to report identifiable sales leads based on news content posted under the company profile
  • Pinterest can serve as an engineer’s design board. All you need to do is post application examples so they can pin it and refer back when a project starts for them.
  • Videos on YouTube, if resources allow, emulate the picture says a thousand words adage. Even short 30-60 second clips are beneficial to clearly stating the benefits of your products or to highlight an application example.
  • As for Facebook, while it definitely paved the road for many a social media tool, it’s still primarily anchored in the consumer realm, but can be effectively used for certain situations. For now, we include it to honor its legacy in building out social media (oh, and it automatically posts to Twitter, so it’s kind of a two birds, one stone type of deal…)

These are just a few ways in which social media tools can be effectively employed by B2B companies.

While we don’t recommend allocating a huge part of your annual budget to building out all these tools, it might be time to think about which ones are worth taking a look for the coming year.

Is your Marketing The Beach Boys or The Four Seasons?

integrated marketing, harmonization, collaborationWhen we talk integrated marketing, we’re really talking about harmonization. And if there’s a lesson to be learned from the varied vocal styles of two of the greatest quartets of all time, this synchronization can be created in a number of different ways.

 

Take the Beach Boys—they used the similarities in their three or four part harmonies to seamlessly blend into a rich, full sound—kind of like the sum of the parts becoming greater than the whole—which keeps you humming long after it has stopped playing.

 

The Four Seasons, on the other hand, were masters at pulling together disparate vocal pieces into one utterly engaging melody, with Frankie Valli’s falsetto delivering that unforgettable punch, making sure Sherry Baby is on your lips for hours to come.

 

So, which is your marketing program more tuned to?

Is there one consistent element that carries throughout every piece of collateral, on your website, even down to your eblasts? This common thread could be visual in nature or could be a tagline, or maybe a stylized logo supporting your company’s overall objectives. Something that when people see it they know who it’s from.

 

Or is it more a collaboration of different elements that support a larger message (think Geico here)? The elements don’t need to be exactly the same—stuffed into the confines of one graphical treatment or a key phrase that doesn’t exactly fit a datasheet the same way it does an ad—but they work together and still support the main objective.

 

Regardless of how it is done, it’s integrated, and as we’ve learned from music icons of the past, harmony in your marketing program can work different ways and still be music to our customers’ ears.

 

And if you’re thinking, “Hey, what about the Beatles? They did harmony, too!”…well, let’s save them for a post on taking the world by storm…in relation to integrated marketing, of course.

Video for B2B… As If There Were Any Doubts…

Business to business video marketing tipsIf you haven’t jumped on the video bandwagon yet, now’s the time to do it!

However, if you’re still contemplating the power of video as an effective communications tool for B2B, consider some compelling facts:

  1. Advances in smartphones and tablets makes video viewing simpler, raising the users expectations of content delivery on a mobile device.
  2. YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world with more than 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month (stats per YouTube, mind you, but we don’t doubt it.)
  3. Google offers AdWords for video, applying the same PPC principles as a text-only program-you decide where, and when, your video ad shows up…and who sees them.

Now, if you’re ready to start the cameras rolling, keep these tips in mind:

  • High quality production of video is still important, but ‘shot on-site’ footage also offers a captivating, real-world feel with which viewers can connect.
  • Brand your channel-it is an extension of your marketing portfolio.
  • That said, integrate videos with other marketing tactics-they are most effective when brought into the fold. You know the drill, sum of the parts and all…
  • As is true for any online content piece, keywords are critical to traffic generation and rankings.
  • Keep is short & sweet—two to three minutes is an ideal length, but shorter pieces are effective as well. If you have to go as long as five minutes, make sure there’s enough compelling information to keep viewers engaged.

So, why is video so powerful. Images help retention, and in today’s fast-paced business environment, being able to make that lasting impression is critical to success. The viewer will retain the information longer with a video.

What better way for people to ‘get it,’ than tying a visual image in with your technical data. If more info is needed, they’ll find all they need, neatly organized on your easy to navigate website, of course…right? But get them interested visually first.

Given all these attributes, it’s no wonder that video has emerged as a B2B superstar…and it appears that it’s still rising in usefulness. For some more details, read this article by PR News that explains the benefits of using YouTube…and why it shouldn’t just be a “nice to have” thing. And this great video infographic demonstrates additional insights into why so many marketers are using video and why you should be, too!