Using social media for B2B marketing

We’ve come to the final part in our series looking at the major social media platforms for B2B marketing. We’ve covered the most popular platforms in depth. Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, LinkedIn and Facebook got an article each.

This final post is a snappier look at four other platforms. Think of it as the best of the rest! We’re looking at the B2B marketing potential of YouTube, SnapChat, Pinterest and Reddit.

YouTube

What is it?

OK, we’re guessing you know this one! YouTube is by far the biggest video hosting website in the world. More than 35 hours of video are uploaded to the site – every minute, every day.

You might not necessarily think of it as a social media platform, but you have a profile and can share, comment, like and subscribe. That makes it social media, and it definitely has B2B potential.

Demographics

The YouTube audience expands across all ages with a slightly higher percentage of users being male.

Is YouTube useful for B2B marketing?

Yes, definitely – though the measures of success are slightly different. If you’re a professional YouTuber with an entertainment channel, everything is about views. More views mean more exposure and more revenue.

With B2B, that’s not necessarily the purpose. B2B marketing videos can get a lot of hits, but realistically it’s not what most people are there for. However, it can serve lots of purposes that don’t depend on millions of views:

  • Informative and educational videos are popular. You could host user guides for your products or explainers about your industry, and direct customers or prospects to them. This is a chance to show your professionalism and customer care.  
  • Videos you upload onto YouTube are reusable many times over. You can link to them on your other social feeds, or embed them on your website – which has SEO benefits too.
  • Calls to action can be included in videos, driving traffic to where you want it to go.
  • Once the content is up, it’s permanent. This is unlike other platforms, where content is much more temporary.

Pinterest

What is it?

Pinterest is a visual search engine with a social element. The home feed and search results are displayed as a assortment of options instead of a single timeline of posts. Users will search, create, save “pins2 and organise content onto visual pin boards, usually for a specific purpose such as an interior home project.

Demographic

Pinterest has over 430 million users each month[Ref1] . It is popular with the millennial generation and has higher engagement from women compared to men. However, something to keep in mind is new user growth has been dropping in recent years.

Is Pinterest useful for B2B marketing?

It could well be, though we wouldn’t recommend prioritising it over a dedicated B2B platform like LinkedIn. However, there are some useful features:

  • If you’re a product-based B2B business, it’s a good way to visually market what you sell. You can actually sell directly from Pinterest. This is useful, but perhaps more limited in potential for “considered”, higher-value purchases by businesses.
  • Content has good longevity compared to other sites like Twitter and Instagram.
  • You can create content and curate it. Saving, and repining content from other valuable sources.
  • New pins can be automatically created if you link your website’s RSS feed.
  • Images grab attention but the captions will entice users to look through more of your site.
  • There are paid ad options available.
  • It’s a collaborative platform. Boards can be hidden, which could be a tool to use with colleagues and clients to gather ideas.

Snapchat

What is it?

A rather casual platform, Snapchat is a multimedia instant messaging app. A principal feature of Snapchat is it lets users send images and videos. The images are usually only available for a short amount of time. After that they are then inaccessible to the recipient. “Snaps” can be sent to multiple connections at once, or added to “stories” which can be watched by followers.

Demographic

Snapchat has over 306 million daily active users[Ref2] . The largest age group using the platform is 18- to 24-year-olds, and the largest growing age group are the over fifties.

Is Snapchat useful for B2B marketing?

It certainly has potential, though the dominant age group is less likely to be in a position to make business purchases. Here are our main talking points:

  • There is evidence of the user base ageing up, providing potential to reach business decision makers.
  • It’s a quick way of creating content.
  • Users engage with storytelling. So, for example, you could break up a product installation into multiple short videos to tell a story.
  • It has potential for brand awareness and humanising your business.
  • A downside: content is short lived. This would require you to generate a lot of it to build a following.

Reddit

What is it?

Reddit is a collection of online communities where users can engage with their interests, hobbies and passions. You can think of it as a hybrid between a forum and a modern social network.

Each forum is called a “subreddit”. Users can subscribe to whichever ones they like. These can be very niche, and cover just about any are of interest you can think of. Reddit runs on votes rather than an algorithm to rank content. Users can vote on the relevance and value of content.

Demographic

Reddit receives 14 billion screen views per month and has 50 million daily active users.[Ref3]  The site is most popular among 18 to 29 year olds.

Is Reddit useful for B2B marketing?

  • Audience segmentation is done for you. Subreddits are groups organised into interests and communities.
  • Posts with lots of upvotes get more exposure on the homepage and subreddit feeds.
  • Conversation is generally longer-form and more civil than a lot of other platforms.
  • Users may prefer speaking to a person over a business so it’s not the platform for relentless sales promotions. It’s a place for discussion, so overt promotional posts may be unwelcome and backfire. Also, some subreddits will automatically remove promotional posts.
  • It can be a good way to engage target audiences. You could try sharing product trials, asking for feedback and generating discussion on a service or product. Although this might not sound like direct marketing, it is a way to influence and show people you’re engaged with them.

How do I know what social media to use for B2B marketing?

The first question to ask: how much time do you have? With infinite resources, you’d probably use every single platform out there. But no one has infinite resources.

In general, as a bare minimum, we’d pretty much always recommend LinkedIn as a B2B social platform. After all, people are on there for work purposes, and you can get direct access to decision makers.

For other platforms, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. There’s not even necessarily a “wrong” answer. They all have their value, and it’s worth experimenting if you can. If you’re unsure or want some guidance on what’s best for your brand, feel free to get in touch!


 [Ref1]https://1827marketing.com/smart-thinking/how-b2b-content-marketers-can-take-advantage-of-pinterest

 [Ref2]https://blog.hootsuite.com/snapchat-demographics/#General_Snapchat_demographics

 [Ref3]https://www.oberlo.co.uk/blog/reddit-statistics