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How to be Successful with Social Media

Regardless if you’re a B2B or B2C marketer, social media is the driving force behind being successful in digital marketing.It just so happens that over 90% of B2B marketers use social media as a primary aspect of their digital strategy (beyond just posting blog posts to social), making it the most popular discipline.

And with the increase of marketers using social media tactics like direct-to-platform publishing through Instagram and Facebook, for example, it’s no wonder businesses everywhere are seeing increases in engagement, traffic, and leads from social.


Even with our marketing at Pinckney, a small investment in both organic and paid efforts on LinkedIn and Facebook led to a 60% increase in non-job applicant online MQLs (marketing qualified leads). That’s insane.

Comment below if you want to learn more about how we did that.

What I’ve learned in the past and what I’m constantly learning today—is that in order to be successful with social, you have to change how you think about it and how you incorporate it into your overall marketing strategy.

So here are some major keys I compiled regarding social media success that you won’t hear very often – but are still really important.

1. You have to get excited about your brand and content

This is so simple yet so underrated. You wouldn’t believe how many times I go to a company’s social channels and it looks as if they’re not excited about existing.

Boring visuals, inconsistent brand presence, and no charm. If you’re going to say that you’re the best at something and implore people to engage with your brand, you should make them excited about actually doing that. This includes:

  • Keeping brand visuals consistent and the most charming representation of your company.
  • Making sure that your social and blog post visuals are fresh and compelling.
  • Crafting copy that inspires sharing and invokes curiosity (ask questions, state facts, give quick tips, etc.).
  • Compelling your employees to share posts on social media and be actively involved in social strategy.
  • Creating content for social media that provides real value that you can believe in. If you don’t think it’s good or useful, don’t make people read (or download) it.

2. You don’t have to build a community, join one

One common theme surrounding social media is community building and I honestly don’t agree with it.

To think that you can just go on social media, drop a few lines and gain followers to control a conversation is a bit disruptive.

You don’t always need to build communities, you become apart of them. That’s how you build trust and get others to incorporate you in their circles.

Successful companies share information, not for the sole purpose of gaining a lead, but to legitimately help out.

Join a community and stop trying to build one–you’ll instantly see a difference in your engagement and traffic from social.

3. You have to participate in the conversation

I mentioned companies trying to control the social media conversation above. Don’t do this.

If you’re actively posting on social, be ready to monitor and engage.

This means keeping up with comments and retweets and actually commenting on and retweeting other people’s content. If you want shares and comments, you must give them. Don’t be greedy or no one will talk to you.

4. You have to know where (and when) to post

If you shout into an empty room, do you actually make a sound? This goes to show that knowing where and when to post are just as important as actually posting.

I love this HubSpot article about the updated times for posting to social. Read it. Use it. Print it out like I did.


(My desk: complete with monitor, optimal social posting times, and random sticky notes.)

5. You have to be experimental with social media and mobile

Why so serious? With all the noise on social media, it’s almost obligatory that you “think outside the box” when it comes to your social strategy.

And it’s even easier to do this now than before because so many millennials are in decision-making and leadership roles. No one knew how far a geo lens on Snapchat or a Pokémon Go lure would have gone until they did it! 

Even with B2B marketing, you’re still marketing to individuals–real people. In 2016, a Pokémon Go lure at a marketing event, conference, or trade show would have capture the attention of our decision makers.

I hope you enjoyed this post and are now equipped to think about social strategy in a whole new light. Have questions about how we strategize for social or any of the information in this post? Be sure to drop a line in the comments below.

We love strategizing how emerging channels like non-traditional social media and even podcasts can move the metrics you care about most.

If you want to learn more about how you can benefit from channels like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn in a B2B setting, check out our handbook we created on social prospecting!

It has a lot of usable insight on the best ways to leverage these channels in your overall strategy.