Managing Social Media: A Guide for B2B Marketers

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A simple, plain-language guide that outlines the tools and tactics you need to drive sales and build brands with social media.


1. Managing Social MediaA Guide for Business-to-Business Marketers 2. It seems like it happened overnight.One moment, social media is just a toy for the the young and politically alienated.And then suddenly, it has completely transformed the way business professionals consume and share information.(Interesting factoid: According to a recent Nielson study among B2B exectutives, social networking is more popular than email.) If you understand the tactics, if you have access to the technology, social media can be one of your most powerful tools. For building your brand. For managing your reputation. And for generating sales. On the following pages, well show you how. 3. Where do you begin? 4. Listen. Your first, most important step also happens to be the simplest.Just listen. Whos doing most of the talking? Whats on their minds? Where are their conversations happening?Once you know that, the rest is easy. 5. Comment.Just as in real life, its best if you ease into an online conversation. So before you launch your own blog or company forum, start off by commenting on others. Acknowledge praise when its given. Offer assistance when its needed. Amplify incomplete information and (gently, gently) correct the inaccurate. 6. Connect.The goal of social media marketing is, obviously, not simply to have a nice chat. You want to convert potential contacts to serious prospects to committed customers.And to do that, you have to offer them something of value. Information. Insight. Ideas. In a form thats easy for them to find, and easy for them to use. 7. What will you need? 8. 1. Social Media AuditLike a traditional media audit, a Social Media Audit provides a detailed report on your company's visibility and reputation in common social channels such as YouTube, LinkedIn, Flickr, Facebook and the major business blogs. The report can also serve as a benchmark to measure future programs. 2. Social Media MonitoringOn a daily or weekly basis, Makovsky tracks what is being said about a company and its industry in social media, providing clients with rich, real-time intelligence on what customers and prospects are concerned about. During crisis situations, when quick decisions are critical, this monitoring is done on a minute-by-minute basis. 9. 3. Policy DevelopmentThough most companies have "online policies," they often don't address social media. This opens companies up to risks to their reputation, and robs them of the opportunity to proactively use social media to build sales. Makovsky works with companies to create customized policies that fit their culture, liability risks and sales priorities. 4. Executive PositioningWith the rise of social media, a leader's image is usually defined by whatever happens to pop up in a Google search. To manage executives image and reputation, Makovsky first plays defense, mitigating potentially negative information online, and then offense, magnifying positive attributes through social media channels. 10. 5. Image UnificationThe proliferation of websites that compile profiles of people without their permission can lead to the fracturing of your executives' image and the undermining of your company's reputation. To help reduce these risks, we use proprietary "image unification" techniques that can solidify your image with key audiences no matter where they look.6. Message MagnificationMessagewords, invented by a Makovsky executive and unveiled at the 2006 Bulldog Media Relations Conference, is a technique that enables press releases, speeches, and articles to appear in response to keywords in searches, blog posts, email content and online articles. Messagewords is particularly effective with content intended for sophisticated audiences. 11. 7. Event SocializationWhile companies go to great expense to hold events, the intellectual content developed at them usually disappears when the last guest leaves. Makovsky harnesses this latent reputational asset and spreads the events content through blogs, Twitter feeds, and online groups. The result? Higher attendance, quantifiable buzz during the event, and reams of intelligence on the attendees that can be used for sales or reputation-enhancing efforts.8. Blogger RelationsThe two techniques that companies most frequently use to communicate with bloggers emailing press releases or using press release wire service "social media releases almost always fail to deliver the desired coverage. Makovsky's social media R&D team has developed new blogger resource vehicles that can deliver your message to the most influential voices, drive traffic to your website, and create a direct, measurable link to sales. 12. 9. Online Group RelationsSimilar to its work in the blogosphere, we regularly conduct outreach to the communities that have assembled online to share their enthusiams and spread information. Makovsky is steeped in the etiquette and cultural nuances of these groups, and applies that expertise on behalf of companies to aid their reputation, staff recruitment, and sales goals. 10. Online Community CreationFew actions can benefit a company's sales, reputation and customer service more than mobilizing its customers into a new online community. Using popular tools such as LinkedIn groups, wikis and Ning, Makovsky organizes new groups, manages their day-to-day needs, and creates missions that theyre happy to to carry out for the company. 13. 11. Channel CreationThe decline of tradional media, coupled with consumers increasing demand for detailed information direct from companies, has made it essential for companies to run their own media channels. Makovsky works with its clients to create attractive interfaces, set editorial direction, write and develop content on a daily basis, and promote it to readers.12. Website SocializationAlthough most companies want to establish an ongoing dialogue with their customers, investors and thought leaders, their websites are usually structured as a one-way monologue. Makovsky specializes in re-engineering existing websites, to enable its content to be spread through social networks, and become a home for communities of customers and partners. 14. About Us:Makovsky + Company is one of the worlds leading business-to-business public relations, investor relations and branding consultancies, specializing in the financial srvices, health, technology and professional services sectors. Based in New York City, Makovsky + Company has partners in more than 20 countries and in 35 U.S. cities through IPREX, the worlds third largest public relations agency partnership. 15. 16 EAST 34TH STREET, NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10016212.508.9600 WWW.MAKOVSKY.COMMAKOVSKY+COMPANYthe power of specialized thinking