Defining your B2B development is the first step that a B2B company should consider from the perspective of new business activities. The brand describes the company and its image in the market: this is a strategic approach that becomes operational to communicate values, positioning, advantages, and offers.
Sometimes undervalued, sometimes overvalued, even for a B2B company, the brand certainly is an integral part of the customer journey of a potential customer: an essential element for the success of a deal. In fact, any interlocutor, before any response action, whether to a call or a meeting request, or even to an email, will form independently and, sometimes even unconsciously, an idea of the company that is contacting him.
This first idea is given by a series of elements of which the brand is the cornerstone. In this post, we will talk about the value of the B2B development and, after a brief introduction, we will review all the digital tools and, accordingly, the social media that, in our opinion, are helpful for its
Introduction: short definition of a B2B development strategy
Before talking in detail about social media, it is necessary to define a brand. In order to determine the identity of a company, it is essential to think about the brand: define its inner values and, more in detail, define its value proposition: the answer to why the company is present on the market. At Vehnta, we carefully evaluate the status quo before starting a collaboration on this activity. It is, in fact, essential to understanding from the beginning the situation on the subject and the company’s market positioning.
Suppose one of our customers has a strong and clear brand definition. In that case, we should only think together about how to translate the brand into communicative terms and choose the correct digital elements and tools to convey the knowledge of its brand to its stakeholders. If the brand is not yet defined, a series of actions will be activated to reach the point where the brand will respond to values and competitive advantage: it will thus have a possible place in the market that has to be built through communication and marketing strategy. Only then will it be possible to plan how to convey the brand.
Both in the case of a strong brand and in the case of a brand that needs to be built, it will be necessary to make an overview of all the tools already active and then to activate, if not present, all the other digital elements that can convey the brand and its message.
How to define and convey a B2B development
There are many helpful elements to define and convey a B2B development in the market.
In this post, we will focus on the role of social media and on the tools that compose this world. Below is a non-exhaustive list of these tools, which are part of the touchpoints of a B2B customer journey structured to customer acquisition.
- Social Presence
- Social ADV
- Content: text, images, and videos
- Digital PR & Influencer Marketing
- Offline and Online Interaction
- Social Insight
Following a brief exposition of these tools.
Social Presence: Strategic phase
Social networks are a communication channel that a company cannot ignore to implement an effective B2B development diffusion strategy: social networks are an integral part of the touchpoints of a digital customer journey.
Vehnta can help its customers in different phases. Let’s see in detail how these phases are structured. It all begins with the strategic step. Here at Vehnta, we consider it essential to manage the Social Presence in the B2B brand and, for this reason, once the reason for having a Social Presence has been decided, we consider essential the choice of channels needed to be activated or that of managing or deleting accounts created a long time before.
To track the user path in terms of the Customer journey in the B2B market, it is necessary to:
- Identify how and when the potential customer will be in contact with the Social presence
- Define suitable KPIs to be observed
- Establish editorial calendars for the planning of the topics to be treated
- Set up a publishing strategy and a tone of voice for the contents
Social Presence: Operational phase
Secondly, when the strategic phase has ended, we find the operational phase where the established objectives are translated into actions to lead to the implementation of what is planned. Going into detail, we are talking about:
- Constant publication of content
- Shared editorial calendar
- Analysis of metrics
- Content optimization based on the collected insights
- General management of the distribution channel, in terms of reactions and comments
This constant activity makes it possible for Vehnta’s customers to have a voice and an online presence also on social media and defines their Social Presence accordingly.
As previously defined, we at Vehnta, by Social presence for a B2B company, mean a part of a more complex customer journey: a path that leads a user, also through corporate social media, to the request for a quotation or a meeting. Therefore, social media will be considered a part of a general strategy capable of talking about the company directly and contributing to its overall positioning.
As Vehnta, we offer an outsourced social media management activity that meets the client’s communication desires and needs constantly.
All the social channels concerned will then be defined:
- Topics and their publication over time through an editorial calendar: a confrontation in specified times will mark the working relationship.
- An essential initial phase of collection of existing contents and the analysis of the industry’s trends as well as an analysis of the activities of the competitors. That is the initial step for management that will be constant over time. Once it has been set, the continuous confrontation will guarantee a unit of intent between Vehnta and the customer company.
- Both parties will check all content before being published. If necessary, translation into the identified foreign languages will be provided. A platform for the management and publishing of the contents will be adopted to facilitate the work.
Social channels are necessary for a B2B brand awareness strategy. The published content will be a starting point of the customer journey on the different channels, and they will be helpful as a step in the transition from lead to a potential customer.
Social media, however, are not only made of organic presence but also paid presence and, therefore, sponsorships or paid advertising.
At Vehnta, we deal with Social Media Advertising activities that we consider to all intents and purposes as a valuable tool to improve the rate of brand awareness and to facilitate contact with potential customers by developing advertising campaigns for all major social networks, with particular attention to the usual channels of B2B. These activities are preparatory to greater recognizability of the brand that, with a view to the flow of a customer journey, is an integral part of a marketing mix oriented to generating leads and searching for new customers. These are very specific advertising activities, as social media allow reaching in a very precise way the target of the potentially interested users of a product or a service, with costs connected to precise goals, hence resulting in greater control of expenses and ROI.
Targeting tools make a very accurate execution possible, thus allowing budget optimization. Through Social Media Advertising activities, extremely direct and fast communication with potentially interested users is possible.
The timing of the contents’ diffusion is another important factor to be considered. A correctly managed strategy is, in fact, a mix of creativity, frequency, and timing.
The process of implementation of Social Media Advertising campaigns starts with:
- Definition of the customer’s goals and choice of the channels to be used and supervised. An effective campaign must focus work and budget on the proper channels to reach the goal. It is essential not to disperse resources concentrated on social media that are inappropriate or not populated by target users
- Connection with the invoicing and data analysis accounts
- Scheduling and creativity of contents: these, together with the customer, must be focused and optimized to reach the expected goals and targets.
Contents for B2B development
In B2B, content and a content marketing strategy for social media are the cornerstones for a stable campaign of permanent brand awareness.
At Vehnta, we deal with the outsourced contentment marketing activity by dividing it into various steps:
- Identification of the topics to be treated and communicated as a fundamental step to align the company’s know-how, meant as the experience of the contents sought by its potential customers and derived from the technical and commercial activity, and our skills in terms of search intent that is to understand what is searched on the web for that theme
- Definition of the editorial calendar as a tool with which defining dates and ways of publishing contents. This tool will also help structure the collaboration between the client company and us regarding time and content, such as texts, images, or videos.
- After our processing, the continuous collaboration with the customer implies his final check before going online.
- Finally, the last step is publishing the content on the appropriate channels. The contents will always be available on the web, and if the channels are constantly fed, they will continue to bring results over time.
For this activity, our customers’ collaboration is imperative: to ensure that the created contents reflect the company’s values.
Shooting and Video Content Strategy
Therefore, not only textual content: corporate shooting is of fundamental importance because it allows the creation of original visual content. For us at Vehnta, the result of the shooting is used as a communication tool in advertising.
It is original content resulting from the activity, which implies clear messages to all the stakeholders involved in the communication activities of our customers conveyed on different social media.
The view shows reality, obviously shaped by the messages the company wants to communicate. Here at Vehnta, in doing this, we follow the steps below:
- Definition of the needs of our customers
- Organization and scheduling of a work plan that combines the production needs of the plant and that of the staff appearing in the photos
- Shooting, optimization, and post-production of the result
- Review together with management and other figures which deems appropriate to involve (for example, sales, communication, and security)
- Use in the most different formats of content created and revised
If we talk about visual content, we cannot fail to talk about Video Content Strategy. Engaging and impactful: videos become fundamental for a winning social strategy.
Vehnta believes that for the B2B world, an optimal Video Content Strategy creates commercial value and consists of producing original videos at the client’s facilities.
There are some steps considered fundamental for the success of a good job:
- Definition of the communication objectives and schedule of releases and filming
- Collection of the material for the video creation, subsequently adapted, edited, and post-produced according to the client’s wishes.
- Publishing online the complete editing
The positive result of this activity allows the increase in brand awareness of the company. It makes it possible to help the lead generation process because, in a few frames, the video conveys the company’s business.
Digital PR & Influencer Marketing
PR & Influencer Marketing activities, typical of the B2C sector, can be successfully declined also in B2B development.
At Vehnta, we believe this is a digital path for finding new customers and that it is thanks to the references, a winning game can be played. We admit that the world of PR, as for the B2B industry influencers, is a complex field, but the right synergy makes it possible for every network to create the proper connection and thus reach its goals.
Therefore, the network, the foundation of every social media, is the answer to PR & Influencer Marketing activities.
A campaign that, moving in parallel between independent web tools and relationships, will have to provide visibility to the offered product or service and the reputation and visibility of the company itself.
We at Vehnta believe that PR & Influencer Marketing activities can be declined based on the social channels and the goals to be reached. We conceive these activities as absolutely tailor-made to the customer’s goals.
The purpose of this activity is to influence the company stakeholders, and that can be achieved in two ways:
- Direct references, namely those that are part of the network, for which a typical activity of supervised word of mouth is necessary
- Indirect references are the references to be created starting from a position outside the network. It is necessary to start web marketing actions on social media, blogs, industry magazines, and specific channels.
The outcome of a PR & Influencer Marketing activity in the B2B world is to benefit from visibility on parallel channels trying to influence all the stakeholders that revolve around a company: such as lead, customers, banks, shareholders, partners, employees, institutions, or potential employees with a view to employer branding and talent attraction.
Offline & Online interaction
In the introductory part to the theme of Offline and Online interaction, we defined how at Vehnta, we approach the customer journey in the B2B world.
As for the previous point, networking can be the main road: perhaps intended as networking that starts from social media and offline terms. Every step of this complex journey is considered an information driver, which allows mapping the different interactions in terms of digital data.
As we already said, the path of the Customer Journey is challenging, but it is also full of valuable insights to intercept the needs expressed by potential customers.
We can find this information:
- In digital analytics data, in terms of numbers and user experience
- In the engagement rates generated by campaigns
- In metrics that can define success in moving a relationship from Online to Offline
- In the path of an Online interaction or an Offline interaction also, such as calls, presentation meetings, or structured meetings
Usually, this last step comes from the close collaboration between marketing, business developers, and salespeople.
That is where Vehnta comes into play by making ourselves an integral part of this supply chain to generate sales value, seeking the right tools and methodologies to collect as much information as possible.
The information and statistics that describe the performance of different social media channels, called Social Insight, is information that, if processed, can provide new ideas for an active customer acquisition strategy and thus generate commercial value.
At Vehnta, we divided this information into:
- Quantitative insights: those describe the values that can be measured by metrics, namely information about the growth in the number of fans and followers in specific sectors or by certain companies, better engagement response based on days or times for publication of the contents, number of likes and reactions to individual posts that could define the interest in specific topics or the composition of the social audience according to demographic characteristics.
- Qualitative insights: these are the result of analysis and study on information clusters that, thanks to the ability of competent professionals, take shape to provide new commercial solutions and ideas. The customer journey on social networks, interactions, and engagement are valuable elements in tracing profiles and observing interests and needs.
Collecting, analyzing, and processing insights help get ready for a meeting and, above all, define the first engagement or a first offer. In fact, we believe that knowledge implies making conscious choices. In sales activities, where there are no second chances, it is always better to face engagement and negotiation with the best preparation possible.
Communication on Social Media and digital marketing change and adapt to the new reality that becomes tomorrow every day. These are fundamental strategic actions for B2B industries that create a brand for their target market, an essential commercial operation for expanding their own business.
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