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The B2B Social Media Guide


Social media can feel a bit frivolous, can’t it? A bit shallow. Noisy. Egotistical even.

It’s all well and good for consumer brands who need to reach the masses, but it would be a pointless distraction for a B2B brand, right?

B2B companies are built on personal relationships, having the right connections, being seen as an authority in the industry.

But that’s exactly where social media excels. At least, social media done well.

It’s the most powerful relationship building tool we have, after face to face time. But with social media it’s much easier to build those relationships with thousands of potential customers and partners.

Historically seen as a marketing sub-discipline, in truth it’s more pervasive than that.

It has grown to straddle marketing, CRM, staff engagement, sales, PR and more.

So it’s high time we all started making better use of it, especially those of us in the B2B world.

In this paper we’re going on a whirlwind tour of B2B social media content marketing, giving you the tools and understanding to get it working for you.

  • Benefits

  • Awareness

  • Perception

  • Relationship

  • Action

  • Strategy

  • Goals

  • Target Audience(s)

  • Platforms

  • Content Pillars

  • Content Calendar

  • Brand Consistency

  • Execution

  • Best Practices

  • Processes

  • Measurement


There’s no hiding it. Social media marketing has become an essential component of any successful B2B marketing strategy.

If you’re reading this paper you probably already understand the transformative effect it can have on your business but it doesn’t hurt to remind ourselves.

We’ve divided them into four categories:





All play a part in building your business, and none should be neglected.


Brand Awareness

If your target audience doesn’t know you, how are they going to do business with you? If you’re not active on social media it’s incredibly difficult to be discovered. Of course, existing customers and partners will know who you are, but without regular content you certainly won’t be front of mind.

With the right approach you can remain mentally available, reach new audiences and massively increase your brand awareness among a much wider audience than before.

“Mental availability means being easily noticed and/or thought of in many different buying situations”
- Byron Sharp

Do it well and you could punch well above your weight, driving brand awareness far exceeding what you’d expect from a business, whatever your size. There are plenty of solopreneurs out there with many thousands of followers, all because they understand the principles of an effective social media strategy.

Hand in hand with awareness is brand recognition. This might seem similar to brand awareness but there is a subtle but important distinction. Using your brand assets in the right way ensures anyone who sees your content also registers who produced it. They see your name, your logo, your design style and your tone of voice. They associate it with your content and the services you provide, they pay more attention to what you have to say in future and they know where to go when they need your services. This relies on having a distinctive brand. Are you noticeably different from the other brands in your niche? Are you recognisably and unmistakably you? And do you use these assets to their full potential?

Products & Services Awareness

If your audience doesn’t know what you sell, how can you expect them to buy?

It’s all well and good being known for compelling content, but unless you’re trying to become an influencer there’s no inherent value in that to your business. What transforms compelling content into material benefit for your business is when people connect the positive impact your content has on them, with the products and services that you provide.

Understanding how to bring your products and services into your content in a balanced way that doesn’t turn your audience off is key to getting as much visibility and engagement as possible without losing sight of the bottom line.

So don’t be shy to show off your products and services. Remember, your audience is only the right audience if they have an interest in what you have to offer.

Bonus: Personal Awareness

Particularly on Linkedin, the interplay between business pages and personal profiles is a huge opportunity.

Building a personal brand can be hugely beneficial to your own career and the success of your business.

As an individual you can say things your company can’t. You can get involved in conversations, events, podcasts etc and it all acts as a vehicle for your brand. You can think of yourself as an ambassador for your brand in this way.

On the other hand, your brand can present information in a way that no self-aware individual can. For example a lot of people find it easier to shout about business successes, for example, from a business page than their personal profile.

Linkedin has tended to favour personal profiles, with company pages getting lower engagement overall. But this is shifting, and it was almost certainly contributed to by the different (and frankly more boring) content that these company pages have historically been producing. More on that later.



Many B2B businesses are built on a vast amount of expertise, knowledge and innovation. Your business will no doubt be the same, perhaps more than you give yourself credit for.

Establishing yourself as thought leaders in your industry can make a huge impact on how your audience sees you. So does demonstrating your customer successes.

Become the go to brand for industry expertise and it’s a short step to a qualified lead. It has a remarkable effect on your credibility.

Be seen as busy

None of us wants to go into an empty restaurant. The bustle of business being done is proof of the quality of the product and service. It’s the same across the business world. Looking busy is a powerful sales tool.

Being seen to be busy isn’t just for show. It provides social proof that you’re worth doing business with.


B2B audiences are so often treated as fully rational beings. Hence so much B2B marketing is so dull and ineffective. Of course, they care about rational factors, they have a business to run, but don’t forget they’re the exact same people who buy Jaffa Cakes and iPhones.

No matter how logical we might see ourselves, in truth we all make emotional decisions in our business lives.

Showing a bit of personality can go a long way to making people feel comfortable with you, to feel good about engaging with your content and ultimately to feel like they could do business with you.


Build relationships with potential customers

LinkedIn & Twitter in particular offer a great opportunity for B2B businesses to network with other professionals in their field. Connect with potential partners, suppliers, investors, and customers who could help you grow your business.

Being part of the conversation as a brand and as an individual goes a long way. Comment, like, share and message when you can add value.

You can also join industry groups and actively participate in discussions about topics that are related to your field of expertise, helping to build valuable connections that could lead to long-term success.

Gather valuable insights

Social media is a two way street. Just as you should contribute to conversations, you should also actively listen to them.

Understanding what your audience cares about, their preferences and behaviour can inform future marketing efforts as you tie in your messaging to fill their needs.

Most platforms provide insights into what kinds of content resonates with users, so you can tailor your posts to target your ideal audiences.

Staying on top of this helps ensure that your content is engaging and relevant to your audience, increases the chances of gaining more followers and building a larger presence on the platform, and helps you to build increasingly stronger relationships with your followers.

Build trust

The strongest relationships are built on trust. Social media provides an incredible opportunity to build trust before you even speak to a potential customer, and long before a working relationship is developed.

Sharing your expertise, showing your credentials, providing insights and opinions and interacting with people and other brands on social media all help to build a sense of trust between your business and your followers.

Trust that you can deliver, that you understand their needs, and that working with you is a worthwhile investment, not a risky one.


Tangible actions that have a measurable impact on your business.

Increase website traffic

By building a community around your business on social media, engaging with followers and providing valuable content, you massively increase the chances of people clicking through to your website when, at the right times, you link out to it.

Linking out to your website turns social into a great traffic driver. Combine it with paid campaigns to supercharge the effect. That not only helps with search rankings, you know these new visitors are exactly the sort of audience you want to attract to your website so your conversions will benefit too.

Improve search engine rankings

While social media is not a direct ranking factor for Google, it can still be an important part of a comprehensive SEO strategy and help to drive more traffic to your website.

Active use of social media accounts and the use of high-quality backlinks to your website is hugely valuable in improving rankings.

Social pages are treated by Google as individual web pages and they are ranked accordingly. This means if your social accounts are posting highly relevant content, it will be discoverable to your audience based on their search terms.

And finally, by sharing your web content, for example a blog or case study pages, on social media you increase the number of people who see and interact with it, which further improves its ranking in search results.

Generate leads

This has to be one of the most appealing benefits of social media to a B2B brand.

By building an engaged following, optimising your company page and content, you maximise your chance of enquiries via your calls to action and external links.

Taking it a step further, by running targeted ad campaigns that reach potential customers based on their interests and demographics, businesses can reach a larger but still highly targeted audience and drive lead generation through various mechanisms.

This guide focuses primarily on setting you up for success in organic social. Creating a content generation system and building a robust organic strategy, but the opportunities for paid media and the leads this can generate are enticing. Get in touch if you’d like to learn more about this


Now we know some of the ways social media can support the growth of a B2B business, it’s time to get the ball rolling and make sure you’re set up for success. We’ll take you through every step.

  • Goals

  • Target Audiences

  • Platforms

  • Content Pillars

  • Editorial Schedule

  • Brand


The first step in developing a B2B social media marketing strategy is to determine your specific goals.

This is a largely introspective task. Look at yourself, look at your business. What are you trying to achieve as a business and, crucially, how do you imagine social media will contribute to reaching those business goals. Without clear goals it’s very easy to waste your energy.

If you’re going to put the work in, you better make sure it actually benefits your business.

Goals can change and grow as you come to discover a broader range of opportunities with your brand and audience, but stating your goals early is essential. The huge range of possible content types, platforms and audiences available to you mean it’s easy to become consumed with work that has no material impact on your business’ success.

So, what might your goals be?

Well first up take a look at all the benefits we’ve already gone through. Which resonate most with you, and which align most closely to your business goals. This will give you a pretty good starting point.

Maybe you want to increase website traffic and leads or direct users to informational pages.

Or do you want to grow your email subscriber list? Are you trying to recruit new members of staff?

Are you aiming to increase brand awareness, generate leads, or improve customer relationships?

Or maybe you just want your industry peers to recognise that you’re absolutely smashing it.

If you’re like most businesses you’ll probably have multiple goals. That’s good. There are so many ways B2B businesses can use social media that it would be a shame to limit yourself.

But choose one priority. It can’t be exaggerated how much more effective your marketing efforts will be if you have a clear priority.

If you want to set really effective goals, make sure they’re SMART. The SMART method seems a little old hat these days, but there’s a reason it’s stuck around. Make sure your goals are:

  • Specific

  • Measurable

  • Actionable

  • Relevant

  • Timely

If you’re not familiar with the process, there’s plenty of information online about it. It’s genuinely worthwhile and only takes a few minutes, so please take the time to be thorough.

Target Audience(s)

Now one of the challenging and most interesting things about B2B social media marketing is that you will have multiple audiences.

These might be:

  • Partners

  • Suppliers

  • Potential Employees

  • Current Employees

Multiple Audiences

It’s vital that you figure out what all your potential audiences are. Be thorough, be thoughtful, and understand whose attention you really want. And take time to assess which of your potential audiences matters to you most.

Your audiences should spill directly out of your objectives. A short example to show how:

You’re a tax advisor who wants to reach new prospects. Your primary audience might be directors or owners of businesses.
You also want to appear to be an authority in your industry. Other tax advisors or members of industry groups might be another audience.
You’re also looking to recruit the best young talent. So you have a third audience of graduates and young accountants.
Understanding your audiences

Once you’ve established your key audiences, it’s time to understand them in as much detail as possible. Some questions you might ask yourself are:

  • What type of business are they in?

  • What do they care about?

  • What are their challenges

  • What content do they engage most with?

  • What channels are they using?

  • Who are they following?

  • What are they trying to get out of their time on social media?

  • Do they come from a particular demographic?

  • What groups are they members of?

This all starts to paint a picture of your audiences in a way that might challenge your presumptions.

How do you get these insights?

Of course, assumptions can be made. But we all know what assumptions do.

There’s no substitute for observation and conversation. Identify individuals within your audience and spend some time with them.

You probably have a client or two who would be willing to give you 10 minutes of their time. You might even have a supplier or partner who you want to engage with on social media because they have a large following that you want to piggy-back on, or because it would be mutually beneficial to promote one another. Ask them what sort of content they would like to see from you.

Write down as much detail about your audiences as you can. You’ll use this information later when you come up with your goals and content pillars and you’ll always be able to refer back to them to make sure your content is aligned.

Overall, identifying your target audiences is an essential step in creating an effective strategy. By taking time to understand who your customers are, where they spend their time online, and how they like to be communicated with, you can create content that is tailored specifically to their needs and interests.


The final step before you start working on the content you’re actually going to create is to look at all the channels available to you and decide where is best for you to spend your time.

There’s an ever growing list of social media platforms. Staying on top of them all can be hard work, understanding which of them is appropriate for your business can be even harder.

We need to be very clear on this point, there is no one right answer. It’s all down to your audience.. But given the businesses we’ve worked with in the B2B space, this is generally the order of priorities that we recommend.

  • Linkedin

Built for professional relationship building and with a nice clear correlation between personal profiles and business pages. It is becoming increasingly mired in personal content, but it’s still the go to place for building a B2B brand’s social presence. New features are added all the time that are great for B2B businesses.

  • Twitter

Very popular among business people across industries, particularly for staying on top of news and sharing opinions. Ideal if you can stay on top of the interactions as things move fast on Twitter. The high volume of content on Twitter can make it hard to drive engagement per post.

  • Instagram

Once primarily a photography platform, Instagram is still probably the most aesthetic platform of them all. You might be surprised at what can be considered aesthetic, there are niches for everything, but you’ll need an angle that allows you to create good looking content while talking specifically to other businesses, not consumers. Instagram is currently experiencing a shift toward TikTok style video consumption so things have shifted on this front. But 2023 is seeing a recalibration towards static images. Good news for many as the barrier to entry is generally lower with static media.

  • TikTok

No, you’re not too old for TikTok. Yes there are plenty of business owners using it every day. And if you deliver content that hits a niche, you could gain a real edge on your competitors. It’s still something of a challenge to get people off-platform and driving action but things change quickly.

  • Facebook

Unfortunately, Facebook is a hard sell for the B2B world. People are mostly in friend and family mode or consumption mode. They’re not in the same discovery mode as they are on TikTok, and they’re unlikely to be in business mode as some people will be on Instagram. For many B2B brands this is a ‘nice to have’, not a ‘must have’. However Facebook groups can be a great place for community building and understanding audiences in more depth. If the right group exists, a little social listening will go a long way.

These are huge generalisations. You’ll need to understand where your audiences are (more on that later) and give proper consideration to the situations where they’re most receptive to hearing from you.

Think laterally here. For example, you might be a B2B business, but your customer might be B2C. If that’s the case, and they’re using Instagram to reach their customers, Instagram might be a professional channel for them, not a personal one.

Spend some time understanding the platforms, their strengths and weaknesses and the type of content that does well on each. This will be crucial later on when you start thinking about what sort of content you might be able to create, and how it might fit on each platform.

Content Pillars

By this point in your journey you know what your goals are. You understand your audience’s interests and needs. You know what content formats work best on what platforms, and which platforms are your priority. You also know what key messages you want to get across thanks to your robust goals. And you’ve seen enough from your competitors to get plenty of inspiration.

Now it’s time to turn this knowledge into a plan. We’l