Most B2B companies don’t prioritize Instagram as an important social media channel.
Although 75% of B2B buyers use social media when making their purchase decision, marketers still believe that Instagram is a powerful marketing tool only for companies that target their customers directly.
However, it’s high time to realize the power of Instagram marketing for B2B companies. Why?
Instagram has over one billion monthly active users. 90% of them follow at least one business on the platform.
What’s more, B2B buyers are common people, so it’s more likely they also use Instagram for product discovery.
Big B2B companies like Microsoft, Hubspot, and Mailchimp are on Instagram. Here are the five ways they use Instagram marketing the right way.
Combine Offline and Online Marketing
It’s no secret that practically every company is aiming to increase the sales of its products and services.
Thus, marketers choose platforms that help to boost sales. More often than not, they don’t even consider using Instagram for this purpose.
Although most marketers believe that B2B customers don’t buy on Instagram, it’s important to map the customer journey. This exercise can prove that Instagram does help acquire new customers.
According to Forrester, 74% of B2B customers conduct half of their research online before making an offline purchase. This means it’s important to combine offline and online marketing.
Microsoft is a good example of this strategy in action:
When it comes to B2B marketing, Instagram can help build brand awareness and increase brand loyalty and trust.
And if you want to boost sales, it’s important for B2B companies to promote offline events on the platform, since most customers make their purchases offline.
Prove Niche Expertise
With a variety of competitors in the market, you can capitalize on niche expertise to set yourself apart from other companies that sell nearly the same products or services.
Thus, it’s important to keep a focus on your customers’ pain points. Then, upload useful content that helps your Instagram followers solve their problems.
Today, users prefer video content. If you want to keep your audience engaged, we recommend using IGTV for business. It is one of Instagram trends that best keeps your audience engaged.
And if you want to make informative content interesting and engaging, you can learn from Hubspot and invite your experts to share their tips and tricks via videos.
B2B niche specific content isn’t boring for the Instagram community if you stay creative and analyze your potential customers, then offer them valuable content.
Once you prove your expertise, you earn brand loyalty and trust. This asset will translate into more sales over the long haul.
Promote Local Businesses
No matter how big (or small) your B2B company is, it’s important to stand out in your local area.
After seeing you service the area they are located in, locals can visit your company and discuss collaboration face-to-face, which is important for most B2B buyers.
All in all, it helps to reach your local community, establish long-term connections with potential customers, and turn your followers into customers.
It’s no wonder that big B2B companies promote their local businesses on Instagram. Let’s take Grey Group, for example.
As a global advertising and marketing organization that operates in 154 cities, it’s important for the company to promote its local businesses to the right audience.
Thus, Grey often writes about its local talents, adding a geotag:
There are many ways to promote your local business on Instagram: introduce your team, showcase your local clients, or sponsor local events. If you want to attract more local followers, don’t forget to add a geotag and local hashtags.
Build Brand Authenticity
In the era of paid ads and sponsored posts, brand authenticity helps to enhance the customer experience, even with B2B marketing.
Buyers crave authenticity, so they pay close attention to businesses with a human face. The best B2B companies use Instagram marketing to build brand authenticity.
Here’s how MailChimp uses Instagram Stories Highlights to feature behind-the-scenes experiences of their talented employees:
When you turn your employees into brand advocates, not only does it help to build brand authenticity, but it also helps to boost Instagram engagement.
Why? Your team will be more likely to share content on their personal profiles, too.
Provide Customer Support
Over the last few years, customer expectations have changed. Today, 70% of customers share their experiences on social media, in order to inform other potential customers. And even more importantly, they expect to get replies from brands.
This means that B2B brands should monitor their brand mentions, comments, and direct messages, so they can provide customer support on Instagram.
Simply put, customers want to get their requests solved on social media. Here’s an example from DHL that proves my point:
Although DHL doesn’t have a separate customer service team for Instagram, the company has an Instagram Stories Highlights album dedicated to frequently asked questions.
DHL also replies to worried followers via comments to offer a solution. This in turn shows the entire target audience that DHL cares about its customers.
Instagram isn’t the most obvious marketing channel for B2B companies. However, it has strong sales potential.
This makes it a perfect place to reach your B2B buyers, establish a connection with them, and promote your product or service.
Moreover, the above-mentioned B2B companies prove that Instagram marketing can bring great results when done right.
So, are you ready to jump on the bandwagon and promote your B2B company on Instagram? What’s holding you back?
Disclaimer: The views and opinions stated in this post are that of the author, and Return On Now may or may not agree with any or all of the commentary.