Social media is entering its 20s.

No, really. LinkedIn was founded in 2003, Facebook in 2004. There are people in the workforce today who can’t remember life before social networking sites existed.

And like most 20-year-olds, social media is having a quarter life crisis: a questioning of purpose, a lack of cohesive identity, and uncertainty about the future.

All of which makes marketing on social media more challenging than ever. We’re not just contending with new channels, algorithm updates and pay-for-play (although all of those are at work, too). We’re contending with social sites defining and redefining themselves. And at the same time, people are re-evaluating how they use these sites, too. 

Amid all of these shifts, one thing remains certain: B2B brands need to be showing up for potential customers on social media.

Here are the latest B2B social media marketing best practices to help you reach your audience. 

B2B social media marketing best practices for 2024

These are helpful general guidelines for success on any social media channel. 

1. Show up on the right channels in the right context

It’s important to put your time and resources towards the channels where your audience is already spending time. For B2B, LinkedIn is a given. Your mileage may vary for the other channels, however. We have seen financial services and technology clients have great success on Facebook, for example — counterintuitive as it may seem. 

It’s really a case of knowing your audience demographics and how they overlap with the channel. Pew Research’s Social Media Fact Sheet is a great place to start.

Context is also key: While LinkedIn’s algorithm promotes multi-slide document posts, a wall of text will send Instagram screaming for the hills. Behind-the-scenes videos of office life or “day in the life” content could take off on TikTok, but might seem less relevant on LinkedIn.

Channel + context + great content is a good foundation for a successful social media strategy.

2. Tailor content to different audiences

B2B buying committees are made up of people at differing levels of seniority, in a wide variety of roles, each with their own pain points and questions. There’s no such thing as a single audience for your B2B social posts — one-size-fits-all messaging won’t fit anyone.

It’s important to understand your audiences, develop personas, and target content to each one.

Luckily, creating content for five different personas doesn’t mean 5x the workload. Imagine you have a PDF report that you’d like to share on LinkedIn: “The Comprehensive Guide to Our Industry.” Take that content, add 15-20% more new content targeted at a persona, and repost as “The IT Leader’s Comprehensive Guide to Our Industry,” and so on.

3. Balance and coordinate paid and organic strategies 

We’re long past the days when social media channels were good for purely organic reach. It takes a solid paid strategy to build a follower base. It even takes a strong paid strategy to get your content to your existing base.

Here are a few ways to integrate your paid and organic strategies:

  • Focus paid budget on your lead-gen content.
  • Augment your paid budget with organic posts that feature snippets of the lead-gen content.
  • Post your most intriguing, engagement-worthy content organically.
  • Amplify the posts that get the most engagement; they’re clearly resonating with your audience.
  • Coordinate messaging between paid and organic for a consistent brand experience.

4. Go all in on multimedia

Social media algorithms are showing a marked preference for visual and video content. A recent report found that each image added to a LinkedIn post increases potential reach by 5%, for up to five images. Video on LinkedIn earns 3x the engagement of text posts. Even text-forward sites like X and Threads are getting in on the multimedia game.

Save the plain text posts for when you have a meaningful conversation-starter meant to drive engagement on the platform. Then make sure your brand keeps up its end of the conversation — respond to posts quickly and with enough material to keep the chat going.

5. Integrate influencers

This may shock some of you, but TopRank Marketing is pretty sold on B2B influencer marketing. Influencers and social media are a match made in heaven for brands. It’s an easy way to get your content in front of a relevant new audience.

Here are just a few ways you can add influencers to your social media strategy:

  • Co-create content with influencers, post excerpts as images with quotes.
  • Give influencers social media kits (image files, suggested text, hashtags, etc) to help promote co-created content.
  • Enlist influencers for social-first content on your brand account.
  • Sponsor a day-long account takeover for a high-profile influencer.

And remember, B2B influencers are those who can truly engage and persuade your audience, not just those with the biggest follower count. Look for people whose content gets engagement, resharing, and discussion.

Another often-overlooked source of influence: your employees. They have networks of their own, which they reach with authentic and personal voices. 

6. Explore new channels

New social media sites come and go — RIP Clubhouse and Blab — but it’s worth checking out some of the latest crop. BlueSky just opened their platform to the public. Mastodon and Discord are decentralized sites with private-run servers dedicated to different fandoms and topics. Reddit has been around for a while but is now actively courting brands.

For all of these channels, and whatever comes up next, keep these principles in mind: The right content, context and audience, promoted with paid and organic, featuring truly influential thought leaders.

Need help creating a social media strategy? Contact us today.

About the author

Joshua Nite is dedicated to bringing humanity, empathy, and humor to content marketing. His two ironclad rules: Never settle for commodity content, and never write anything you wouldn’t want to read. Great writing takes heart, soul, guts and rhythm. Josh is also the once and future Pundamonium Pun Slam champion, a stand-up comedian and storyteller, and is getting pretty good at electric guitar. His only weakness: Extreme self-consciousness when writing about himself in the third person.

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