Do you Tweet Your Client’s News?

I love new business meetings because I find when it comes to social media you never know what kind of reaction you are going to get. Of course, everyone asks about it, but in the B2B market, many folks see social media as a necessary evil. People understand they need to consider/implement/execute/recalibrate a social media strategy, yetresources continue to be tight and marketing is pulled in a number of different directions (these factors could be a whole other blog post). But it also seems we’re also at the point where many B2B marketing executives are burnt out on meaningless social media metrics, and I can’t say I blame them.

During a recent new business meeting the conversation inevitably turned to the topic of social media and metrics. It was during this discussion that one marketing executive cited his annoyance that his previous PR agency would consider the number of times they retweeted his company’s news as a PR metric. My questions were as follows, “To what end? What was the audience for the news? Who were they trying to reach via Twitter?” Because let’s be honest, turns out the old saying, “Birds of a feather…” also apply to the social media realm. For the most part PR and marketing practitioners are following other PR and marketing practitioners on social media channels.

Sure, reporters and analysts are also in the mix, but I would argue that a direct message or Tweet to said reporter about your client’s news is a better option than essentially blasting all of your marketing-type followers with news of the latest widget. (Sounds suspiciously like a well executed media strategy – go figure). Unless you are interacting with the very people who are purchasing the client’s software or hardware, your posts are just noise and far from a metric.

That said I do believe there is a difference between representing a client on the agency side and working for an organization in-house. In fact, I know a number of great B2B marketing folks who work in-house at their respective organizations and are legitimate brand ambassadors for their organizations. Their Tweets and posts should incorporate their company’s latest news – it is part of their job as they manage user communities, build content for sales enablement and serve as the defacto source of news for the organization.

When it comes to PR agency folks and consultants, these same Tweets simply don’t carry the same weight. If social media is supposed to be about transparency and authenticity then sticking to your guns about what is really worth posting to your network and what isn’t only bolsters your individual credibility. Besides, no one actually believes you like procurement software.

–Julie


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