In a recent post, we explored the value of Twitter as a B2B sales tool. Today, we’re re-examining this topic, but this time we’re looking at Twitter from a marketing perspective.
Continue reading for the B2B Marketer’s Twitter Handbook.
Since its release, Twitter quickly garnered traction in the B2B marketing realm. In fact, 87% of B2B marketers report using Twitter as part of their social media strategy, trailing LinkedIn as the number one platform by only 6% (source).
However, as the use of twitter becomes more widespread, marketers continue to be skeptical of the platform as a viable marketing tool. One study suggests that only 50% of B2B marketers are confident in Twitter’s capabilities as an effective B2B marketing tool, compared to LinkedIn’s 62% confidence rating (source).
So, are modern marketers right to be skeptical?
At ZoomInfo, we’d like to think not. Once thought of as a strict “B2C only” social platform, Twitter is an effective component of the B2B marketing mix. Boasting over 250 million monthly active users, Twitter has become one of the go-to platforms of social media users across the world, with over 500 million tweets being sent out each day (source).
What makes Twitter unique is its ability to reach a large audience, all in one space, in real time. It’s the only place executives can follow topics that matter most to them, get industry news as it breaks, and engage with the most relevant audience, instantaneously. For many B2B marketers, Twitter has proven its ability to build a company’s credibility and influence, reach audiences across the funnel, generate leads and ultimately, drive sales.
Still not convinced? Consider these statistics:
- 82% of leads generated through social media are found through Twitter (source)
- Twitter has outperformed both Facebook & LinkedIn 9-to-1 in terms of lead generation (source)
- 43% of business decision makers use Twitter to discover new products and solutions (source)
- 34% of business decision makers use Twitter to research for an IT initiative (source)
- 29% of business decision makers use Twitter when making a purchase decision (source)
- 31% of business decision makers use Twitter to get support post-purchase (source)
- 85% of followers feel more connected with businesses after following them (source)
Strategize for Success
Obviously, Twitter can produce some stellar results, but as we previously mentioned, we believe it’s all about how you use the tool. You get what you put into it. If your marketing team is putting minimal effort into cultivating your Twitter presence, than you can expect minimal results.
Getting the most value out of Twitter requires a well-planned strategy. Not sure how to get started? Here are some best practices for harnessing Twitter’s full potential as an effective B2B marketing tool.
Establish Your Brand
As with all other marketing strategies, your Twitter page should be a shining example of your brand. Here are a few things to consider:
- Your profile: Your profile should be a vehicle through which visitors get a feel for your brand and company. Be sure you completely fill out your profile to reflect all vital business information including a brief bio, links to your website and contact information.
- Imagery: Your Twitter picture should be consistent with your other social media profile pictures – we suggest using your brands logo. Be sure all imagery is consistent and high-quality throughout your Twitter account.
- Protect yourself: One wrong move and your Twitter presence could potentially damage your company. Establish disclaimers to protect your brand when you think it’s necessary.
Build Your Following
Followers should be a top priority of your marketing team. Not only does a big following increase the likeliness of your message being received, but it also improves your chances of engagement and re-tweeting. Here a few simple, often effective ways you can start building your following.
- Following is often times reciprocated. Take a look at who is following your competitors, and follow those that may be relevant to your business – they may follow back!
- Prompt organic growth by including a ‘follow’ button in other marketing content such as your website, blog posts, email messages or even in your employees email signatures.
- Try searching for accounts, hashtags and trending topics similar to the topics surrounding your organization and industry to pinpoint potential influencers.
- Test out promoted tweets. According to one recent study, promoted tweets increased follows by an average of 258% (source).
- Listen in: It’s important to develop a strategy surrounding social listening. Determine what your followers are talking about, who they are talking too, what interests them, and what encourages them to engage.
- Use relevant hashtags: Hashtags are often used by Twitter users to search for conversations on specific topics and issues. Include relevant hashtags in your tweets to increase the chance that your tweet will be seen or engaged with by the right people. However, be sparing with your hashtag use. Research shows that two or less hashtags work best.
- Mention industry leaders: It’s important to interact with other influential brands and accounts. If an account similar to yours shares a valuable piece of content, consider giving them a shout out or sharing it with your audience. If the person likes what you have to say, they may reciprocate and retweet/respond to you. This puts your profile on display to their audience as well.
- Be professional: You want to be sure your organization is seen in the best light. Avoid sharing personal opinions, potentially scandalous topics and unprofessional language. Also, be sure to check & double check spelling and grammar!
- Offer value: You want your followers to gain something from your tweets, not get annoyed by constant sales-speak. If you are an expert within your field, be sure this is demonstrated on your profile. Consider sharing articles, advice and opinions your followers will find helpful. Also, be sure to answer any questions or concerns your followers may have. By following these simple rules, you can effectively build trust with your followers and even establish your business as a thought leader.
- Be concise: It’s only 140 characters – leave out any information that isn’t vital!
- Get visual: Consider including photos, videos, gifs and even emojis to your tweets. They may seem silly, but visual components are a great way to grab your followers’ attention as they scan through their crowded timeline.
- Personalize it: Twitter offers businesses the opportunity to bring their brand to life and establish deeper connections with prospects and customers. Don’t be afraid to show some personality in your Twitter profile and tweets – your followers will appreciate it.
Increase Your Reach
Naturally, you want your tweets to be seen by as many people as possible. Here are a few ways to boost your reach:
Provide the Best Content
You may only have 140 characters, but the content of your tweet can make or break your success with the platform. Here are a few things to consider before you hit send.
Companies Who Are Doing it Right:
1. HubSpot (@HubSpot)
Hubspot’s ability to get personal with their followers is unparalleled. As you can see from their profile, HubSpot is located in the Boston, MA area. On the day of the Boston Marathon, HubSpot tweeted congratulations to the Boston Marathon runners. This is an excellent move to garner the attention of their local followers, who’re probably celebrating the event. It’s a great way to make a B2B organization more relatable to the general population.
2. Oracle (@Oracle)
Oracle’s multiple events throughout the year attract thousands of people. To garner the most coverage, Oracle utilizes a specific hashtag for each event for attendees to use. On another note, through these hashtags marketers unable to attend the event are able to stay in on the action and generate more buzz surrounding the brand.
3. Adobe (@Adobe)
As demonstrated in the following tweet, Adobe regularly uses Twitter to commend artists for their work. This is not only an effective way to form a connection with their followers, but their use of high-quality, visually appealing photos are a great way to grab someone’s attention.
For more information about improving your B2B marketing campaigns, contact ZoomInfo today!