The social network Instagram can also function as a marking platform for the B2B segment. This network is especially ideal when it comes to brand awareness and employer branding. Read here what you should keep in mind about Instagram for your B2B communication.
Marketing on Instagram reaches the decision-maker
Many enterprises in the B2B segment focus on business networks such as LinkedIn or XING for their social media activities. Even the marketing opportunities on Facebook are increasingly becoming well known – but Instagram? In the eyes of many entrepreneurs, it is simply something fun and that is used by a much-too-young target group.
But that’s not entirely true. There are many people from the millennials generation who are already decision-makers – and this target group is active on Instagram. According to an analysis by the statistics portal statista from January 2019, more than 290 million people worldwide between the ages of 25 and 34 use the portal. Another 267 million Instagram users are even older and thus more likely to be in leadership positions.
At the same time, the marketing opportunities on Instagram are different than on other social media networks due to the platform’s mainly photo and video approach. The focus is on emotional communications. Entrepreneurs can achieve these promising goals with B2B communication on Instagram:
- Brand awareness and company image: Thanks to creative and appealing images, the brand can be showcased in a positive light.
- Employer branding and recruiting: Candidates also inform themselves about a company via Instagram. The company culture and lifestyle can be communicated here in an ideal way.
- Product communication: Products can be highlighted in photos or videos.
There are many people from the millennials generation who are already decision-makers – and this target group is active on Instagram.
5 tips for using Instagram in the B2B segment
Follow these five tips if you, as a B2B entrepreneur, want to be successful on Instagram:
1. Be authentic
Staged photos, possibly with products from the “dry” B2B field, don’t appeal to Instagram users. They want real content that shows the company as it truly is. Especially video content is ideal for giving a glimpse into the company’s culture. So, don’t post the perfectly produced ad film on Instagram; instead, show amusing outtakes from the film’s production – bloopers or glitches.
2. Take part in the conversation
Reactions from users to your posted content are great, but it’s just as important to make some yourself. Answer comments to your own posts and follow other relevant accounts where you can make positive comments yourself. Active communication is important for understanding the needs of the target group, for inspiring interaction and for gaining valuable insights.
3. Create your own hashtags and expand on existing ones
Even if you have not been active on Instagram yourself, your company may have been a topic in a post already. These posts would then feature a hashtag to your company. Maintain this hashtag and include it in your profile description so that followers know how they can tag your company in future. If you don’t want to create a hashtag yourself, use the company’s name or the name of the flagship product to start with. Such catchy hashtags are easier to establish than ad slogans or abstract terms.
4. Use Instagram stories
Don’t rely on your general photo and video feed. Use Instagram Stories, a feature that allows your company to tell short stories using photos or videos – offering your followers a personal experience. Even if these stories automatically disappear after 24 hours, this feature is worthwhile to use for providing good content. What’s more, so-called Highlight Stories can be created which are permanently stored and accessible in your profile (between the short description and feed).
5. Invest in Instagram ads
By using Instagram ads, you can increase your brands awareness, your number of followers and number of customers. Various formats are available, including photo ads, video ads and stories ads.
Best Practice Instagram for B2B
Germany’s largest manufacturer of steel, thyssenkrupp, leverages Instagram successfully for its communications strategy. The company has managed to showcase its products with an artistic appearance in a high-quality and abstract way. Nearly all images go through a light-blue filter, which is in line with the corporate identity. The photos of the high-gloss objects made of steel and concrete would be perfect for the walls of an industrial-style flat. A total of 40,000 users follow thyssenkrupp today on the company’s Instagram channel.
But thyssenkrupp is following its own, very concrete goal with its Instagram appearance: recruiting new employees. To achieve this, an own career account was created and already has more than 10,000 followers. Here is where the company’s own employees give in-depth insights into their jobs, likewise shown in the company’s light-blue hue. At the same time, the company calls for applications.
According to a ranking by the Sweden market research company Potentialpark from February 2020, thyssenkrupp takes first place when it comes to the question “Which company showcases itself in social media the best?”.