Social media can be an overwhelming place with so many posts to schedule, networks to monitor, and audiences to engage with. Unlike B2C companies, B2B companies invest in social media management platforms that help simplify the process of building, measuring, and executing a multi-channel B2B social media strategy. As competition for the best B2B social media management platform intensifies, one thing remains clear: most tools out there don’t cater to the unique needs, goals, and challenges of B2B marketers.
That is, they lack certain features and capabilities that limit B2B marketers from measuring the true business value of social media and integrating this social media data with marketing automation and CRM platforms.
In this article, I’ll share my with you my top 5 reasons why Oktopost is the best B2B social media management platform for data-driven marketers and how it goes about blowing other platforms, like Sprout Social, Spredfast, Sprinklr, and Hootsuite out of the water.
1. Track valuable social media KPIs: leads, not likes
Gone are the days where social media was purely a “brand awareness tool”. It is now a critical line item in budget and revenue reports as c-level executives expect social media to attract qualified leads and grow the sales funnel. Despite this, most B2B marketers focus on tracking top-of-funnel activities such as likes, shares, and traffic on social media, without considering the revenue side of social networks.
While it’s nice to be able to track your follower growth and analyze the geo-location of your likes and shares, what value is it bringing to your organization? Just because someone likes your post or follows your page doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll end up converting into a paying customer.
In this respect, Oktopost gives you granular metrics to understand the entire lead journey on social media – from the moment someone engaged with your content to the point where they visited your website, and converted via a webform. Once someone converts from your social content, Oktopost will automatically assign a name, email address, company name, phone number, and social profile to the known lead for a complete view of their social media activities.
2. No need to depend on Google Analytics for limited and misleading data
Before touting that Google Analytics allows you to track conversions from social media, I’ve got some news for you: the data in Google Analytics has significant loopholes, which are prohibiting you from understanding the true performance and impact of your social media activities.
Google Analytics cannot tell you who converted and from what post
Any conversions that originate from a social link remain anonymous unless you go through the hassle of creating a custom URL for every post you share. Often times, B2B marketers will promote the same URL (e.g. a webinar landing page) multiple times with a slight variation in the messaging. In such case, Google Analytics won’t tell you which specific message drove people to convert.
Come to think of it, Google Analytics also won’t show you the time of day at which the social conversion occurred. Imagine how valuable it would be to know that ‘Andrew’ converted from a social post around the topic ‘marketing ROI’ on Saturday at 9 AM, while ‘Katie’ converted from a social post promoting a webinar campaign on Monday at 5 PM.
Google Analytics only shows you conversions from social links that go straight to your website and convert there and then
The problem with this is twofold:
(a) People don’t always convert after clicking on the first social link
(b) Most marketers curate content that leads to third-party websites
As a result, Google Analytics is missing social engagement data that’s critical for understanding how your social media posts help attract new prospects!
First, let’s elaborate on problem (a): The buyer journey isn’t linear; it’s a mish-mash of different activities. People learn about your brand through Google searches, but also interact with your brand directly on social media.
Take a look at the following scenario: on day #1, Julia clicks on your LinkedIn post. Over the next 3 months, Julia scoured the web for more information about your product or service, which eventually led her to directly search for your website. Once Julia landed on your website, she filled a web form requesting a product demonstration.
Looking at this journey, Google Analytics will associate the conversion (web form fill out) with an ‘organic search’ and not the original ‘social click’ taken 3 months earlier.
However, if you had shared that LinkedIn post directly through Oktopost, you would have been able to view the entire trail of social activity, including the clicks she took and the conversions share made even if they were 3 months apart. More specifically, you will be able to view the following details with Julia’s conversion:
Now let’s address problem (b): A common practice for many B2B marketers on social media is sharing curated content created by external influencers and companies. For example, if ‘Company X’ proudly tweet a link that points to an article in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the link’s pathway would look something like this:
- Company X tweets from a social media management platform → WSJ blog that mentions Company X → 3 months of internet surfing → Company X’s website → Convert
- Company X tweets from a social media management platform → WSJ blog that mentions Company X → Click on a link in WSJ that points directly to Company X’s website → Convert
- Company X tweets from the Oktopost B2B social media management platform → WSJ blog that mentions Company X → 3 months of internet surfing → Company X’s website → Convert
In scenario 1 and 2, Google Analytics will not associate the conversion with Company X’s tweet because of third-party activity. Whereas in scenario 3, Oktopost will attribute the conversion to Company X’s organical tweet, even though it led to a third-party page.
In other words, even if you go through the process of creating a unique URL for the curated article before posting on social media, the most you could track is the link clicks for that article – not the conversions.
But with Oktopost’s B2B social media management platform, you can:
- Automatically create a unique URL for a specific campaign
- Automatically shorten the link
- Track first and third-party links that were shared through the platform
This means that for the first time, you can accurately assign conversions to every social media activity, allowing you to effectively determine which content drives the most traffic to your website, which content generates the highest number of leads, and which networks provide the greatest return.
3. Leverage social engagement in your Marketing Automation platform
According to Marketo’s State of Engagement Report, 35% of prospects now turn to social media, among other channels, to do their own research about your product or service well before speaking to your sales rep.
As a B2B marketer, you must keep a pulse on every audience touchpoint and connect between them to produce a unified picture of a lead’s activity, interests, and intent.
Unfortunately, most marketing automation platforms only show you half the picture. They present lead activity from 3 key sources: website, email, and third-party data from your CRM. In other words, data from social media is either incomplete or completely non-existent, which causes major blind spots in your lead scoring, lead nurturing, and lead attribution models.
If you are working with premium marketing automation tools and CRM platforms, then you’ll be happy to know that Oktopost integrates natively with:
By integrating Oktopost with your marketing automation platform, you can finally leverage social engagement data to build highly-targeted programs:
- Lead nurturing: Target leads with hyper-personalized content based on their social media engagement.
- Lead scoring: Build a scoring model that prioritizes social touch-points, and in turn, drives more qualified leads.
- Lead attribution: Accurately attribute demand generation to social media activities – and give social media the credit that it deserves.
- Lead segmentation: Segment audiences according to their interactions with social content, networks, and campaigns.
The more you know about your prospects and what they’re interested in, they more effective you can be at getting them to convert and become your evangelists.
4. Report on your social media ROI
Earlier I mentioned that social media is now a line item in revenue reports. Yet an ongoing challenge for B2B marketers is to be able to quantify the contribution of social media to the company’s bottom line.
With Oktopost, you finally measure and assign a monetary value to inbound leads that come from social media. For every conversion type (e.g. eBook download, webinar sign up, demo request), Oktopost asks you to assign a ‘conversion value’ – how much is the lead worth.
This one-time setup will enable Oktopost to automatically calculate the number of conversions and the total ROI value for those conversions, so you can confidently report them to your C-levels.
5. Amplify your social media reach with employee advocacy
Let’s face it, people trust people more than they trust brands. While most B2B marketers rely on their corporate social channels to “spread the message”, there’s a much more effective way to improve your content marketing efforts. We call it ‘employee advocacy’.
Employee advocacy is a social media strategy that empowers employees to share brand-related content with their professional network. Through this, your brand not only taps into the element of social proof, it also gets exposed to a much larger pool of qualified leads.
Oktopost has designed a way for you to make it extremely easy for marketers to provide pre-approved content to employees, and for employees to share it in a few clicks to their Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter profiles. Packed with post-level analytics, content customization features, and fun leaderboards, Oktopost makes content sharing an extremely rewarding and effortless experience for advocates.
Best of all, Oktopost’s employee advocacy platform arms marketers with powerful analytics so they can measure their program performance on numerous levels – from tracking top-performing advocates to measuring content engagement and establishing program ROI.
You have to see it to believe it!
Hootsuite, Sprinklr, Sprout Social, and Spredfast are great platforms, but if you’re a B2B marketer, you need something more robust to achieve your business objectives. In a nutshell, Oktopost is your one-stop-shop for all of your B2B social media management needs by:
- Tying every social media post, network, profile, and campaign to lead generation
- Gaining an accurate and complete picture of your lead journey across first and third-party channels
- Integrating social engagement data with marketing automation to enhance lead nurturing, scoring, and attribution programs
- Establishing the true ROI of social media
- Tapping into employee advocacy to amplify your social reach
If you want to learn more about how Oktopost’s B2B social media management platform can help you achieve your B2B marketing objectives, schedule a demo here. After all, you have to see it to believe it!