Create Your Social Media Outlet For B2B E Commerce Business

To successfully engage your B2B customers in today’s world of Facebook and Twitter and FourSquare, you have to meet your customers where they are–and that’s on social networking sites.

As a B2B organization, you might be left scratching your head and wondering how to harness the power of social media marketing to reach your customer base. It is not always clear how to reach B2B customers in the very B2C world of social media marketing, but it is definitely possible.

What’s more, the lack of clear destination sites for like-minded B2B organizations to mix and mingle adds to the challenge.

The solution?

Create your own social media destination to support your B2B ecommerce business. And you can take the lead from Ikea. Yes, Ikea–the Swedish home goods giant.

In a clear play for a place at the social media table, Ikea recently did two things. First, they launched a YouTube channel called “How to Build” that demonstrates how to assemble some of their most popular–and confusing–products. Second, they hip-checked other B2C social media sites and created their own destination social media site called Ikea Share Space, where real Ikea customers can upload pictures of how they designed their spaces using Ikea’s products. (Want to read the article? Check it out on ContentMarketingInstitute.com.)

Why is this important? Well, those who love Ikea LOVE Ikea products and using them in their personal spaces, so Share Space gets those Ikea afficianados in one place to share their best designs with other Ikea fans. This sharing gets other fans excited about how a product is used and those fans start to look for a way to implement a similar project in their home. For those customers who are struggling to assemble a large piece of furniture, the Ikea YouTube channel provides a quick destination for videos demonstrating product assembly making Ikea the ultimate resource for all things Ikea-related.

So, what does Ikea’s social media strategy have to do with your B2B business? A lot.

B2B ecommerce organizations can learn from Ikea’s example and create their OWN social media destination site. If you are wrinkling your nose and thinking, “Why would we want to create a social media destination site for our B2B product?” consider the following.

  • Could your customer base benefit from real-time idea sharing with other customers who use your product?
  • Could you provide specific product information that would improve customer engagement with your product and ultimately with your brand?
  • Would “how-to” videos or other interactive content improve customer satisfaction and retention while reducing the call volume to your customer service reps?
  • Do you want someone ELSE (read: your competition) creating a destination site that answers your customers’ questions (and pulls them away from your site)?

Social media is a powerful force that is only going to grow in scope and influence over the next year. As B2B ecommerce matures and becomes the expected way to do business, having a social media destination is going to be a critical way to engage your customers.

To learn more about how to leverage the power of your B2B ecommerce site, download the white paper, B2B Ecommerce Success – Seven Questions to Consider When Beginning an Ecommerce Initiative.