14 May B2B versus B2C: How to Compel with Content as a B2C or B2B Executive
We all know content is king, and as the backbone of any social media presence, it’s also the primary driver of social media success. An effective social media presence requires a steady cadence of thoughtful and objective-driven owned content tailored to your unique audience. Any content that fails to resonate will also fail to impact your bottom line. In part two of our two-part B2C versus B2B blog series, we’re going to tackle the nuances of creating social media content for both B2B and B2C executives. While we think it can be valuable to read about best practices for both types of execs, feel free to skip ahead to your most relevant section!
For an executive in the B2C space, spreading awareness and fostering an engaged community is likely among your top priorities, and building trust among that audience is one of the best ways to achieve those goals. Therefore, your social presence should be heavily focused on visual content that feels authentic and humanizing, and topic areas that are likely to initiate and maintain engagement. We’ve created the guide below to help you get started:
The first thing to consider when establishing a posting plan for your social presence is what categories of content will best resonate with your audience and support your overarching objectives. For a B2C executive, one of the most important desired outcomes is an increased positive sentiment as it relates to both the executive him- or herself and the brand. Because of this, we recommend utilizing a mix of content that is both authenticating and relatable, including promoting company culture and accomplishments, participating in important social good initiatives, and providing unique perspectives or humorous takes on timely or newsworthy topics. To more concretely align your content mix to your goals, we recommend assigning a percentage to each category of content based on levels of importance. For example, you may decide that 40% of your content should be focused on behind-the-scenes company culture, 30% of your content should be centered on company news and accomplishments, 20% should be third-party content, and 10% should be your personal blog.
Tone & Voice
A B2C executive may choose to use more casual language to better-connect with his or her audience and foster a sense of approachability and connectedness. Users will likely feel more comfortable actively engaging with an executive who demonstrates an open and friendly persona, perhaps even incorporating humor into his or her messaging.
Social content for an executive in the B2C space should be heavily focused on visuals, utilizing eye-catching imagery, behind the scenes photography, or beautifully designed inspirational quote graphics. This type of content is much more easily shareable and therefore more likely to spur engagement among your audience, helping to generate a sense of community.
Of course, another form of visual content is video. It’s no secret video content is important—75% of all people watch videos online every week, and 55% of people watch online videos every day. Video tends to be particularly well suited for B2C brands, and this can extend to the executive as well, but will be used in a slightly different way. Because B2C executives should strive to maintain a sense of authenticity on social media and avoid over-promotion, we recommend utilizing video to capture behind-the-scenes content from company or industry events, participation in philanthropy, or as an opportunity for the executive to foster an even better sense of openness with his or her audience via FAQ videos or interviews.
When it comes to which content will best benefit a B2B executive, there is a much heavier emphasis on education than entertainment. Because the primary objective of a B2B executive social media presence is to generate new business, it’s important to position yourself as an industry thought leader with unique expertise. Promoting your own knowledge will reflect well on your company as well, and help to communicate the value of your services to potential customers. Again, we’ve included some tips for getting started below:
There are many categories of content that can help B2B executives establish themselves as credible thought leaders. Any form of educational content, such as owned blogs, case studies, or whitepapers will help to establish an executive as a subject matter authority, and this can be further supported by coverage of conferences attended, speaking events or awards and accomplishments achieved by the exec. There is also an opportunity for B2B executives to share third-party content from media outlets or other industry experts, but it’s important to always include thoughtful personal commentary, such as a unique perspective or question when sharing. Again, once you determine which content types will best support your goals, assign a percentage to each category to create an objective-driven content mix.
Tone & Voice
An important part of positioning yourself as an expert or industry leader is in the tone and voice you choose for your messaging. While a B2B executive may (and likely should) still want to be seen as approachable and open to inquiries, the overall tone should be professional, knowledgeable and authoritative, encouraging users to look to him or her for guidance or support on niche topic areas. Demonstrating the desire to be helpful to others will create the opportunity for open two-way communication with your followers.
Visual content for B2B executives should further reinforce the messaging that he or she is an expert, educational resource and should work to support the materials outlined in the content mix section. This can include data- or information-driven content such as eye-catching graphs or compelling “stat” graphics to accompany blog posts, case studies or whitepapers. Additionally, photography from conferences, networking events or speaking engagements can build additional credibility for B2B executives.
Traditionally, B2C companies have monopolized video marketing, but times are changing. Fifty-nine percent of executives indicate that they would rather watch a video than read text, making video an important tool for leaders in the B2B space. Similarly to the still visual content, video can be used to further demonstrate an executive’s expertise and simultaneously humanize him or her while building credibility. We recommend experimenting with videos featuring an in-depth analysis of industry topics, a Q&A or FAQ, or simply filming behind-the-scenes interactions at industry events. If you’re the type of executive who would prefer avoiding on-screen time, you can also experiment with motion text graphics to put quotes or compelling data into video form.
While the best practices and tips outlined in this two-part series are intended to help you dip your toes into content creation for your executive social presence, they’re certainly not exhaustive. If you’re interested in learning more or obtaining additional support, don’t hesitate to set up a complimentary consultation with one of our experts today.