Supply chain companies can use influencers in their prospects’ network as a strategic tool to gain new business.
The term “influencer marketing” often brings to mind celebrities endorsing their favorite brand of bottled water or jeans — not an image that is particularly useful for B2B businesses. However, B2B marketers should be taking this powerful trend in content marketing seriously.
While your supply chain may not benefit from an endorsement by Jennifer Aniston, you likely have brand influencers at your fingertips, which you may not even realize. Effectively leveraging these endorsements is a strategic tool for gaining new business.
Developing an influencer marketing strategy
Once you’ve identified your natural influencers, here are three important steps for building an influencer marketing strategy for your company.
1) Know your target buyer.
Rather than a scatter-shot approach, making the effort on the front end to identify your target buyer personas allows you to strategically target your customers. Understanding their needs, challenges, and purchasing structures is the key foundation to any content marketing effort, and influencer marketing is no exception.
2) Identify your industry influencers.
Industry influencers aren’t just the big names, though those people are certainly influential. It comes down to how your buyers make their purchasing decisions. The 2016 B2B Buyer’s Survey Report found that nearly half of B2B buyers use peers and colleagues as a major information resource when choosing a vendor.
Who are those peers and colleagues whom your target buyers turn to? Use every resource at your disposal to determine how they get their information. Connecting on LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social networks is a great way to do this.
3) Use the right tools for your business.
Any effective content marketing strategy depends on using the most effective tools. In a post for CMS Connected, Leah Kinthaert makes a strong pitch for Twitter. She cites the ease of plugging in a hashtag or keyword in giving you “volumes of information — from who the influencers are in that industry to what today’s breaking news is on the topic.” Furthermore, clicking on a hashtag shows you what your competition is doing as well.
The bottom line is that influencer marketing can be an extremely effective aspect of a B2B business’ content marketing strategy. Knowing your buyers, finding your influencers, and effectively leveraging this information will help boost your social credibility, as well as generating new business.
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