Businesses of all sizes across the world are leveraging the help of influencers for their B2B marketing. B2B influencer marketing is a cheap and efficient way to create successful marketing campaigns spanning a variety of marketing channels without investing a huge amount of time into them. But the real question is:
What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing is the process of integrating people of influence into your marketing strategy in order to increase:
- The number of visitors to a website
- The number of “likes”, “shares”, and “follows” on social media
- The number of sales on an e-commerce platform
- The amount of traffic to a specific landing page of a website
Simply put, influencer marketing is using the voice of a thought or industry leader to get your brand’s message to your audience on your behalf. It’s an easy way to use the celebrity status of a person to encourage your audience to listen to you.
Related: How to Become a Marketing Influencer Before You Turn 30
The Benefits of Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is important because it is a way for one person to influence the masses through various digital forms. Influencer marketing is:
- A way to connect to customers who are more difficult to reach
- Not as expensive as other forms of marketing
- A good way to maintain an authentic focus on your target audience
Top 10 Examples of B2B Influencer Marketing
Because the best way to learn about something is through experience, I’ve outlined 10 examples of successful B2B influencer marketing from some huge brands for you to review, understand, and potentially implement into your marketing strategy.
1. Synechron with Chatbots
Chatbots have been on center stage from a marketing standpoint this year. Chatbots have made a number of tasks easier for consumers. From ordering a pizza to booking a flight, the opportunities are endless. Just how does B2B influencer marketing fit in? A perfect example of this is Synechron. The company leveraged various financial services to then incorporate chatbots into their business in order to solve various challenges it was facing, some of which included banking, trading, and insurance problems.
These chatbots can be integrated into social media platforms, such as Facebook, thanks to tools like Chattypeople. Chatbots helps you boost your business capabilities through AI-powered chatbots that can undertake a variety of tasks; for example, placing orders, taking payments, and pushing offers and promotions on demand.
2. TopRank with Content Marketing
Content marketing is still a very powerful organic tool that can help you boost engagement, maximize your reach, and improve the quality of your leads. TopRank incorporated B2B influencer marketing into its content marketing strategy in order to promote the 2014 Content Marketing World Conference. TopRank asked its 40+ influencers to compile a list of advice they would give aspiring content marketers. From there, valuable content was created in the form of e-books, blog posts, and long-form Q&A interviews, from which readers could learn.
3. IBM with Employee Advocacy
There is no one who understands your products and services better than the people who are being paid to sell them. Let your employees do some of the talking by making them your brand advocates. A B2B company that makes their employees influencers is IBM. IBM’s Marketing Social Business Program Director, Amber Armstrong, was quoted on Dynamic Signal’s website saying they, “drove 50,000 new registrations to IBM Verse in the first two weeks of launch, a lot of that is due to employee advocacy.”
4. Okta with Customer Content Marketing
Aside from your employees, who know everything there is to know about your brand, products, and services, customers also value the opinions of other customers. This is because clients do not have a reason to lie. They will speak about your company without any bias and if positive, client testimonials are essential to the success of your B2B content strategy. Okta, an identity and device management company, did this very well by asking its clients to share their experiences with the brand and then published these in the form of stories that show how their services helped their clients do their job more efficiently. Some of their clients, and in turn, influencers, included News Corp, Adobe, and 20th Century Fox, all of which had their own landing pages, with media like statistics, videos, quotes, and various relevant blog posts.
5. SAP with Video Marketing
Video marketing is an engaging way to attract and maintain an audience. If you couple video marketing with a celebrity or influential figure, you’ve hit the jackpot. SAP, a software solutions provider, is the perfect example of a company that used B2B influencer video marketing to promote its Sapphire Conference. The event, which attracts more than 20,000 attendees, was advertised through live video content created by a variety of industry influencers that was then uploaded directly to their Facebook profiles. The video content consisted mainly of interviews in which influencers shared valuable insights and information on relevant topics. This content was then shared on the SAP blog, leveraging fantastic results with a turnaround of approximately 80,000 guests at the event.
6. Video Fruit with Guest Blogging
One of the most traditional forms of B2B influencer marketing is guest blogging. Companies today are making more efforts to seek out guest bloggers for their own pages in an attempt to gather valuable insights from industry professionals. This came as a positive surprise to Bryan Harris, founder of marketing consultancy Video Fruit, as he was published as a guest blogger on the Okdork blog. On the day the post was published, the results for Video Fruit were astronomical:
- An increase in page views of over 500 percent
- Unique page views jumped up by over 600 percent
- The average time visitors spent on the page increased by more than 8 percent
- The bounce rate diminished by just under 6 percent
7. Point Blank SEO with Guest Blogging
Another example highlighting the importance of guest blogging as a form of B2B influencer marketing is Jon Cooper, the author Point Blank SEO, a link-building blog. He was published as a guest blogger on YouMoz, followed by Moz itself. In just 24 hours, Point Blank SEO saw its visitor numbers rise to more than 400. Since then, his blog has seen a steady rise in numbers.
8. Microsoft and National Geographic with Instagram
Most businesses’s go-to platform for promoting photography is Instagram. Instagram is rich with possibilities for using various hashtags, a mound of media editing features and an easy-to-use interface. But what happens when the company doesn’t have the photography skills to do the creative work? It partners up with industry influencers who can get them the audience it needs. It’s no wonder Microsoft came up with the great idea of coupling National Geographic with International Women’s Day to create an Instagram campaign called “Make What’s Next”. The results were phenomenal:
- 30 pictures by renowned photographers across five of The National Geographic’s Instagram Channels
- More than 3.5 million “likes”
- More than 1,000 pictures uploaded to Instagram
9. H&M with Social Media Marketing
In addition to Instagram, companies are leveraging influencers across social media in general. For example, H&M worked with a variety of celebrity influencers to promote its holiday clothing line on social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. By creating four engaging video advertisements and using influencers, such as Tyler Posey, Hannah Simone, Jana Kramer and Peyton List, the company was able to reach over 12 million customers across the world with its new collection.
10. Maybelline with Social Media Marketing
Maybelline is another fashion brand that was able to fully utilize the power of social media with the added help of B2B influencer marketing to reach a huge number of consumers during its 2016 Fashion Week. By working with 15 beauty experts from 15 countries, Maybelline was able to:
- Reach over 13.9 million consumers across the globe
- Get 3.6 million “likes” attributed to this influencer marketing campaign
The case studies above are just some examples that highlight the undeniable importance of B2B influencer marketing. From blog and social media content to creating valuable media for your consumers, if you can publish them on relevant influential websites, you’ll be able to generate quality leads and significantly boost your website traffic.
by MURRAY NEWLANDS