Why You Don’t Want an Agency Managing Your B2B Social Marketing

Comments: 4

  • Totally agree with the points made here, although I would argue that “social media” is a pretty broad topic. It does not make a lot of sense for B2B brands to use agencies for 1-on-1 community interaction, customer service, etc.

    There are, however, a number of things that agencies *can* help B2B brands with. Specifically, the flashier display-oriented marketing pieces like putting select social posts on your home page, building a branded social hub on your website, creating social display screens for trade shows and events, and adding supporting social mentions to landing pages to increase lead conversion.

    A lot of B2B brands (GE, Dow, Cisco, Teradata, Eloqua, etc.) use our FeedMagnet platform specifically for those display-oriented social programs – and many of them have their agencies design and implement the programs since they need to fit in with the broader trade website, show design, or ad campaign design.

    You can see a few examples of the kinds of programs where agencies *can* help B2B brands with social here: http://www.feedmagnet.com/blog/b2b-social-media-marketing-examples/

  • Hi Jason,

    Thanks for your comment and good examples of what you guys are doing. We’ll check out your FeedMagnet platform.

    Our belief at Leadtail is that B2B social marketing needs to be managed differently since B2B companies have different characteristics and objectives than B2C companies. Similar to how search marketing is different than brand marketing, and even within search marketing, PPC management is different than SEO management.

    Now, that doesn’t mean B2B companies shouldn’t care about social media as a channel for brand awareness. That’s not the issue. The issue is they struggle to use social media to shorten the sales cycle, generate leads, and truly build a social audience filled with prospects.

    Why? Because they are relying on agencies to manage their social media. = )

    Unfortunately, we predict this will have a negative impact on the social media budgets for B2B companies. Why? Because the ROI is very elusive with how B2B companies are currently using social media.

  • I agree completely with 1, 3, and 5. I agree that leads are extremely important but I think are only part of the B2B marketing goal. I also think it depends on whether you are talking about inbound or outbound marketing. Either way I do think Brand is still very important. Most people are very risk averse when it comes to making buying decisions and even more so when it has to do with their job. I like the old adage that “no one ever got fired for buying Microsoft.” If you aren’t Microsoft then building a strong online profile with a consistent message becomes extremely important.

  • Hi Kevin,

    Thanks for your comment and no question that Brand is still important. It’s just not AS important for B2B companies as finding, engaging, and converting prospects into leads.

    And today, we believe that the default focus is too much on branding. Not because this is what B2B marketers are trying to achieve with their social media efforts. But instead, it’s because that’s what agencies know how to do.

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