Operating a business means that you’re constantly searching for ways to get in front of new customers, increase revenue and generate more leads. But where do you start?
With so many different avenues and options to choose from, it can be difficult to find the best strategy that works hand-in-hand with your brand.
Plus, setting yourself apart from the competition within the B2B industry has never been as challenging.
The good news? Influencer marketing could be the leverage you’ve been looking for. It can be a relatively cost-effective way to solidify brand reputation and increase the level of trust you have with your audience.
The even better news? We’ve put together a guide that outlines the ways influencer marketing can work for your B2B company. We’ll explore what influencer marketing is, why it can be so effective, and 5 actionable ways that it can work for you.
What Is Influencer Marketing?
At its core, influencer marketing allows you to promote the products or services you offer by working with someone that’s aligned with your brand. They already have an established following and the personal connection they have with their followers provides a brand new audience to get in front of.
This immediately leads to generating a broader reach that’s backed by credibility. Partnering with an influencer that’s in your niche, and that has a solid track record, lets you tap into their following. Why does that matter? Because they have a following that’s ultimately built upon trust and familiarity.
Their followers listen, react and act.
Why Is Influencer Marketing Effective for B2B?
Think about the traditional way of advertising and promoting a business. Typically, it would include things like television spots, radio campaigns, and billboard messaging. All of these tactics worked, but they can be expensive, time-consuming, and only reach a limited audience.
Now, think about the power that social media holds today. Billions of people all around the world, from different backgrounds and varying interests, tune into and scroll their favorite social media channels for hours at a time. Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok can narrow in on your target audience.
On top of all of this, influencer marketing doesn’t just benefit B2C brands. B2B companies can see the same types of rewards and return on investment. Ultimately, this converts to generating more B2B leads, increasing engagement, and building awareness.
Here are 4 of the biggest benefits that influencer marketing can provide your B2B company:
- Thought leadership that can increase brand visibility
- A new point of view that resonates with your audience on a deeper level
- Increase the network of professionals that you wouldn’t have reached on your own
- Increased credibility that highlights the benefits your business provides
All of this lets you take your B2B services to the next level.
5 Ways Influencer Marketing Can Work for B2B
Below you will find five ways that influencer marketing can help your business increase visibility, establish a level of trust with your audience, and highlight the benefits you provide.
Partner With an Influencer in Your Niche
Since influencers already have an established audience and partnering with one that can speak to your target market can go a long way. Not only will they likely have a large following, but they might also have a professional email list you otherwise wouldn’t be able to tap into.
This can help the awareness of your service spread wide but still allow you to reach the people you want to reach. And it can be done in any number of ways – they can create a training course, hold an event or promote your brand across their social channels.
Leverage the Power of Social Media
Social media holds a lot of power and a lot of sway, and influencers play a big role in that. According to a social media study, brands are going to spend $15 billion on their influencer marketing strategies by the end of 2022. To break it down even further, 97% of marketers plan to use Instagram posts in their overall strategy.
Try and keep up with the latest trends and connect with multiple influencers across more than one platform. This can help you stay ahead of your competition and reach a wider audience. And this doesn’t mean you should only focus on influencers with a large following. While that’s still beneficial, partnering with an influencer that’s influential in your niche will still get you in front of the right audience.
For example, Microsoft partnered with National Geographic to create an incredibly powerful and engaging influencer marketing campaign. Microsoft’s ultimate goal was to try and encourage young women to go in the direction of STEM careers (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). The campaign was called Make What’s Next, and they leveraged some of the best photographer influencers on Instagram.
Create Branded Content with Influencers
Instead of simply partnering with an influencer and having them promote your service to their audience, try and include them in your own content. Branded content is a great way to leverage influencer marketing and you can do it in a variety of different ways. It allows the influencers to get creative in their own way but be part of your own marketing strategy.
It could include things like a series of blog posts, promotional videos, or even a podcast series. This can work well on both sides since it gives you some creative control and helps your marketing efforts stay aligned with your B2B brand as a whole.
A great example of this was the Cisco Champions Program. They partnered with their community of advocates and built an entire marketing program with them involved. Not only did this allow the advocates to increase their knowledge, but it provided Cisco with a wide range of promotional content.
Give Away Your Service to An Influencer and Have Them Review It
Influencers, big or small, have one major thing in common: they’re leaders that their community follows. This means their following trusts what they say and believes in the things that they do. Giving away your service to an influencer and having them review it can be a powerful way to establish a level of trust with their audience and, ultimately, grow your own customer base.
Plus, it’s an incredibly cost effective way to help generate some buzz around your B2B company. The influencer might make a video of them testing out your service, or even use your service to make the video, depending on what it is.
Have an Influencer Conduct an Interview
One of the best things about an interview is that it can get published in multiple ways. It can be a blog post, a podcast, or a video. Or, it can be a combination of all three. This allows your marketing efforts to multiply by strategically putting the content out through several mediums.
You can set it up in your own office to provide an inside look at where the service gets created. And throughout the interview, you can touch on the most important aspects of your service, like the value it provides and the benefits your customers will receive.
There are several ways that you can use influencer marketing with your B2B brand and now you have some ideas to help you get started. You’ll be seeing an increase in engagement, a boost in sales, and establish the credibility your product offers your customers.
Did you enjoy finding out how influencer marketing can help your B2B brand? Let us know which idea you loved most in the comments below, or share some of your own ideas!