Social media is an inherently volatile environment. Technology, user behaviors, and platform algorithms are continually evolving. That means B2B social media marketers constantly face new challenges and opportunities.
Karri Carlson, co-founder and VP of Operations at Leadtail, had the opportunity to sit down with Blast Media president Lindsey Groepper for an episode of the SaaS Half Full podcast. Their conversation provides a fresh perspective on the current state of social media and offers valuable insights for B2B marketers as they navigate this dynamic world.
Karri describes the last six months in social media as “very dynamic.” Despite the turbulence, she highlights the predictability of platforms like Twitter (now referred to as “X”), which continue to evolve in alignment with their business goals and objectives. This evolution provides a stable foundation for B2B marketers to build their strategies, allowing them to set aside the noise and focus on their core objectives. As Karri puts it, platforms will continue to evolve in the direction that supports their business objectives, offering a sense of predictability amidst the chaos.
Look (And Wait) Before you Leap
In this rapidly changing environment, Karri emphasizes the importance of a “wait and see” approach to new changes in social media platforms. B2B SaaS companies, in particular, do not need to react to every single change announced.
It’s crucial to confirm the changes materialize and assess their impact on the business before making significant adjustments. “You can give it a second. Most B2B SaaS companies can wait to see it materialize and make a judgment there,” she advises.
One notable trend that Karri points out is the migration of valuable features behind a paywall.
She suggests that getting verified for a reasonable cost is a wise investment for businesses to ensure they have access to all the tools available to be successful on the platform.
“To get verified for, you know, $80 a year or under $100 a year, it’s kind of a no-brainer in the scheme of things,” she notes. This small investment can provide businesses with essential tools or features that help enhance their social media presence.
Threading the Needle of New Online Communities
The launch of Threads by Instagram is another significant development in the social media landscape. Despite the initial hype and rapid user acquisition, the platform saw a swift decline in engagement.
However, Karri highlights the potential of Threads and other similar platforms in the future of social media, where smaller, niche communities may dominate.
She notes, “There’s a real argument to be made that that is where social media is going instead of the sort of Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook troika that we have had for about a decade.” This shift towards smaller, more niche communities offers new opportunities for B2B marketers to engage with their target audience in a more focused and effective manner.
Karri highlights the rise of niche communities like Mastodon, an open-source Twitter clone.
Unlike mainstream platforms, Mastodon allows users to set up their own servers, define community standards, and decide the openness or exclusivity of their communities. This decentralization allows for more tailored interactions without the noise of broader platforms. However, the challenge lies in navigating these niche communities. Some require invitations, while others are open.
The process can be convoluted, but the potential for targeted engagement is immense.
Video Is The Social Media Star
Video content is becoming essential for any winning social media strategy. With platforms like TikTok and YouTube Shorts redefining content distribution, the emphasis on video is undeniable. Karri believes that video content will continue to grow in importance, offering a more genuine way to showcase expertise and engage audiences.
“Video content is going to be a better way to showcase that you have real people who have real expertise,” Karris says. This shift towards video is also driving the emergence of B2B content creators. While B2C has always been ahead in this realm, B2B is catching up, and the potential for authentic, engaging content is vast.
LinkedIn Takes Off It’s Nerd Glasses
LinkedIn, often viewed as the default B2B platform, is undergoing its own transformation. While it may not be deemed “cool,” its significance in the B2B space is undeniable.
As Karri points out, the LinkedIn newsletter is one of the platform’s underutilized features. These newsletters, which can be run from company pages, offer a unique way to engage with audiences. Unlike email newsletters, which can become obsolete when a person changes jobs, LinkedIn newsletters remain with the individual, ensuring continued engagement.
However, content marketing challenges in the B2B space are also evolving. The traditional brand awareness methods are giving way to more direct go-to-market strategies. While there might be a temptation to double down on demand generation, Karri warns against relying solely on these methods. The returns are diminishing, and the need for genuine engagement is paramount.
She suggests focusing on content showcasing employees, their expertise, and their customer interactions. This approach aligns with brand building and ensures sustained engagement on social platforms.
B2B marketers must remain agile despite continuous changes in the social media landscape. But it’s critical not to be driven to sudden action by every change that comes along. By adopting a patient approach, staying updated with the latest trends, and being willing to explore new platforms, businesses can effectively navigate the world of social media marketing and ensure their strategies remain robust and effective.
Ready to get started with B2B social media marketing? Let’s chat!