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Fishing for B2B Connections in the Sea of Twitter

by channelmaven on January 28, 2015

Nowadays, in order to reach your target audience and amplify the existing one, it is all but required you have a Twitter account. However, simply being on social media is not enough. If you want to get noticed, you need a strategy for reaching your audience and then know what to do once you catch their attention.

When you compare it to other social media sites, Twitter is more impersonal. To find someone on, say, Facebook or LinkedIn, you know who they are and at least (most of the time) have met. Once you add or connect with them and they accept, you immediately have access to lots of personal and professional information: where they are from, where they went to school, where they work, etc. With Twitter, one can find themselves clicking through hundreds of profiles based on keywords, topics or hashtags yet not know a single tidbit of personal information about the person whose profile they are visiting. To you, these profiles are the fish in the Sea of Twitter.

Fishing_CartoonPhoto Credit: bizlocallistings.com

 

While Twitter is less personal, it still serves as a fantastic means of expressing a pain point and when users post about pain points, they use hashtags and keywords as breadcrumbs to lead you to them. From there, dip your pole in the water to show them you have a solution. And when they bite, you reel them in. However, this is much easier said than done.

In order to attract attention to your profile, you need to make people interested in it. This can be done through posting content. It is important to post links to articles and stories that meet certain requirements. They need to be interesting, engaging and relevant. Sure you could post something about the newest season of Game of Thrones because it’s interesting and engaging, but how does that help your potential clients? You could post an article about an internal company event. It’s certainly relevant, but to a Twitter user scrolling through tons of stories in their feed, it is not interesting enough. Plus nobody likes the person who is always tooting his or her own horn (though it’s acceptable on occasion). By posting content that others will look at and start to look forward to, you will build your followers (audience).

Once you attract attention, start interacting. In the Sea of Twitter, it’s important to make as many connections as possible. Think of it as micro-networking. When networking in person, you introduce yourself to potential clients as a Solution Provider, then probably make small talk about interesting ideas and stories. On Twitter, it’s no different except the small talk is already done for you in the form of posts. Once someone has read it and acknowledged it through a retweet or favorite, thank them. Eventually questions and comments will start to form around your posts as your audience becomes more engaged. This is when you can really engage by responding to comments, asking questions and promoting discussions. By making followers more comfortable over Twitter, you can bring them around to the idea of working together. Again, Twitter is the same as in-person networking only less verbal and more textual.

 

Twitter-bird-megaphone
Photo Credit: hedgy.com

 

One last thing to keep in mind when working on your Twitter strategy is to not only create relationships, but also maintain them. Don’t come out guns blazing, posting every few days then stop abruptly. Continue to post a few times a week and continue to promote and mention and comment, but don’t fade away. It looks unprofessional to have an account where nothing happens and consistent interactions keep your audience engaged and works in your favor in the long run.

Overall, this is a solid foundation with which to base your strategy. It is different for everyone and needs to be tailored to fit your specific needs. Take this and fill in the details for your situation and over time it will certainly help. To get more ideas for specific tactical (instead of strategic) Twitter methods, look at some of our other blog posts like “5 Simple Tips for Growing Your Twitterverse” and “Twitter Newbie? @Mentions and #Hashtags and Tweets – Oh My!” Now get to fishin’!

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[Webinar] Drive Social Media Success within the Channel

by channelmaven on January 21, 2015

Help your channel partners better execute social! It’s more than just having them repurpose your corporate social content. Moving the marketing mix to predominantly digital mediums has brought more opportunity, when used correctly.

Join Heather K. Margolis, President of Channel Maven Consulting in a joint webinar with Olivier Choron, CEO and Founder of Pure Channel Apps as they discuss the tools to get the most out of your social media efforts in the channel. Tune in to the webinar on January  29th at 10 AM MT (17:00 GMT). Register here: https://www.brighttalk.com/webcast/8977/137099

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4 Tips to Educating Partners on Marketing

by Heather K. Margolis on January 14, 2015

More and more we hear goals for the channel in 2015 around partner marketing.  Usually this means materials partners can customize and send out via email or platforms that enable drip campaigns, content syndication, and/or social posting or social content including posts, videos, and webinars.

While all these things are definitely necessary, there is one piece missing. Something that needs to happen before you ever launch the above programs.  Education.  Just because you’ve given partners the tools in an effort to save their budgets or enable them to market your solutions better, that doesn’t mean partners know how to truly market.

Marketing is so much more than just sending an email and hoping for the best.  It is imperative you teach partners how to brand themselves online, build a stronger list, launch a successful email campaign, and leverage social to drive demand.

marketing-101Photo Credit: blog.straightnorth.com

 

So how can you, the vendor, better educate partners on marketing to end-customers?  We have a few of suggestions for you here:

1.    Format Matters:  Getting a guide that’s 25 pages long isn’t going to be read and the information is probably going to change in a year especially if you’re talking about social.  Hour long webinars can also take up too much time or span too many topics.  Provide partners with materials that teach them incrementally and are provided in an easily digested format.  At our Social Media Rally Station {link to video} we teach partners in less than 15 minutes how to use their social profiles to target customers.  If you want to educate partners virtually 3-5 minute bite-sized videos like our Roadmap {link to Roadmap sell sheet} that cover one single topic so partners can go back to it or only watch the topics that interest them.

2.    Partner Marketing is not Corporate Marketing: Your partners don’t have the marketing resources your corporate team does. Make sure you’re giving partners advice that is attainable.  Nothing is worse than suggesting they use adwords or pay-per-click when they have nowhere near the budgets that your corporate team has.  Be sure whoever is doing the training truly understands partners’ businesses and their constraints.

3.    Ensure Education Aligns with Resources:  This is a great time to remind partners about the resources I mentioned above.  If you’re teaching them about drip campaigns show them your platform that does drip campaigns (if it does…not all of them do).  If you’re teaching partners about social, show them your twitter handle, LinkedIn group, etc. to ensure they follow you as well as your social platform that helps them post to end-customers.

4.    Make is Accessible:  Whether a webinar or videos or speaking engagement, ensure partners can access the materials as often as they want and whenever they want.

Educating partners to market to end-customers not only makes them more successful; it also endears partners to your solutions and programs.  If they see how much you care about their business and that you provide them with unbiased marketing education, they are going to remember you as they’re walking into an opportunity.

 

 

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My Channel Team

by channelmaven on January 8, 2015

Finding the right candidate for a position is hard enough.  Add to that the requirement of having channel experience and anyone who has done it is currently groaning, rolling their eyes, nodding their head “yes!” or all of the above.

Those of us in the channel know that finding a person with channel experience can be frustrating.  Those of us who have looked for channel roles with a company that truly “gets” the channel can be equally as frustrating.

I can’t count how many times each of us is asked if we know of channel specific talent or roles. Enter: My Channel Team. Whether you are looking for a position or a channel organization trying to fill a role, My Channel Team has you covered. Best part? Currently it’s a 100% free service.

 Screen Shot 2015-01-08 at 12.32.05 PM

My Channel Team is simple; if you are looking for a position, simply update your profile to showcase your expertise and highlight your channel marketing work experience to potential employers.  Don’t worry! You can make it anonymous if you want to. Start creating your profile today by clicking here.

If you are a Channel company frustrated by the challenges of filling a position for a channel executive or team member use My Channel Team as your channel recruitment partner. Send your job description to info@mychannelteam.com.  You can also stalk, oops I mean review candidate’s profiles that are eager to join your team here. Interested in someone? Send your contact information to info@mychannelteam.com to inquire about the candidate.

Whether you are looking for a contract, full-time hire, or your dream job My Channel Team is a great way to find the channel position or channel team member that truly speaks channel.

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