Social Commerce: What it means for B2B Brands
Social media has completely transformed consumer spending habits over the past few years and has revolutionized what marketers know as the buyer’s journey. In fact, HubSpot reported that the number of US social commerce buyers grew to 80.1 million in 2020 and is anticipated to increase to 96.1 million in 2022. It’s clear that Social commerce is an industry that moves quickly and is incredibly profitable to businesses, but what exactly is it, and what’s in store for B2B brands?
What is Social Commerce?
Social commerce is the process of selling products on social media platforms.
Think of it as the intersection between social media and e-commerce. The buyer’s journey, or rather, the shopping experience, takes place on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. What that means is that those platforms listed herein have launched tools and features to make shopping an enjoyable experience for social media users. Insider Intelligence revealed that in the US, nearly 36% of internet users are social buyers, which is approximately 90.2 million people. For the customer, it’s a seamless experience. They can shop in their pajamas, there is no pushy salesperson, no judgments, and no time wasted going to a store only to find out a product isn’t in stock. It’s a very quick “click and buy” process.
What Does This Mean For B2B Businesses?
This means that if you’re not already engaging in social commerce, you should consider starting.
Meeting your customers where they are is a fundamental strategy for e-commerce businesses. If your business goals are to acquire new customers, or perhaps you need to increase sales, then it’s critical that you integrate social commerce into your marketing strategy.
When it comes to your audience, you’ll find them on social media. 54% of Gen Z shoppers and 58% of Millennials agree that social platforms are better than online searches for finding out about new products.
Social media is also an excellent part of your marketing strategy if increasing sales is your goal, after all, $81.05 was the average value of online orders referred through social media during Q2 of 2021.
How Can We Start?
Start With A Strategy
Define your social commerce goals, down to the vanity metric goals that you’d like to achieve. You’ll want to integrate your strategy with your existing marketing strategy. Product launches, sales and incentives are all excellent ways to cross-promote on social media.
Begin posting on your social media channels consistently, and take advantage of all of its features – stories, reels, lives, sharing, shops, etc. Overtime, your content will grow into a library of resources for your customer, and it’ll also establish you as credible and authoritative.
Engage Your Audience
You’ll find that driving engagement and interacting with your followers is the key to meeting your customer where they are and educating them about your product. You can answer their questions, reshare, repost, or retweet their mentions of your page, or simply give them a like. Keep in mind your brand voice and tone during these interactions. As a result of your new connections, you’ll also find increased revenue, more sales, and a greater customer base.
Leverage Influencers and Partnerships
Up until this point, you’ve developed a significant following – on and offline. To share your product with a larger audience, it’s advantageous to work with influencers or develop B2B partnerships. By definition, an influencer is someone on social media who will promote your product. Not only do influencers help make your product feel real and relatable, but they are already trusted by their audience. Let’s say you’re a small clothing boutique interested in selling more denim. An influencer may make a YouTube “haul” of several pieces of your denim, model them, and describe the material, fit and quality in their video. Likewise, by developing a B2B partnership, you’ll reach another business’ audience, an opportunity you may not have had otherwise. Take Walmart for example, recently, they teamed up with TalkShopLive, a livestreaming social commerce provider. Their goal was to meet customers where they were, while making it easier for them to shop. This brilliant partnership bridges the content and interaction you’d get from social media, with products linked directly to Walmart.
Social commerce is not only here to stay, it’s expected to grow well beyond 2022. If you’re not already exploring the opportunity to connect with your customers on social media, it’s definitely not too late! Ready to build your social commerce strategy? Our team would be happy to help you take the next steps. You can set up a call here!
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