The thing about social media marketing is that it has so much potential. As these platforms grow and progress, so do the opportunities they present for brands and businesses. Marketers have long realized that there can be so much more to social media than just growing your followers and connecting with existing customers. When done right, channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter can effectively generate real leads online.
The cherry on top of this social sundae is that lead generation through social media marketing is cost effective and produces excellent results.
You probably know them by now, but let’s run through the top platforms that can generate inbound leads for your business.
Of course we’re going to start with the OG. The social media channel that started it all.
Facebook is undoubtedly the first place people go to find other people. It also remains one of the most active platforms ever since its release, with now more than one billion users worldwide. Any social media marketer will recommend including Facebook in a brand’s marketing campaign simply because it makes sense. Your audience may not necessarily be focused on Facebook, but you can bet they’ve got an account they check every several days or so.
If you want to generate a significant number of leads online via Facebook, you should consider running paid ads at some point in your campaign. People have also noticed that changes to Facebook’s algorithm have made it much harder to gain organic reach, but don’t worry; the good news is that Facebook Ads is quite budget-friendly and well worth the investment.
LinkedIn is automatically equated with stuffy businesspeople and career-minded men and women who are all about the grind. While this stereotype isn’t a hundred percent true—and is actually pretty unfair to the actually-laid-back men and women with LinkedIn profiles—it’s not too far off its mark, either.
LinkedIn is for the modern professional. It’s for the organized and earnest career-driven individual to find and connect with like-minded people who believe in putting their best foot forward. It is also, therefore, the top social media website for getting organic B2B leads online.
Given that it is a platform that is specially designed for networking and professionals, LinkedIn is a natural tool for lead generation. And as with any platform, you need to approach it with a proper strategy or else you won’t get results.
A good starting point is to use LinkedIn to promote your industry expertise and prove your authority.
Compared to the other websites, Instagram is still in the early stages of its development—especially in terms of being a marketing tool. It’s pretty fresh-faced and fun for the right people, but unlike Facebook and LinkedIn, it’s only recently started catering to advertisers and marketers.
Instagram’s got its own style of marketing and advertising, and it’s quite unique. Aside from an explore page that picks no favorites and an algorithm that marketers are still trying to figure out (although to be fair to them, Instagram’s algorithm changes almost as much as Google’s does), Instagram ads blend seamlessly with non-sponsored content, making it so that unexpected viewers may not even notice it’s an ad until they’ve given it a second look.
It’s also worth noting that Instagram is a great platform for engagement. It also started the hashtag mania that every other platform eventually stared utilizing as well. And as a marketer, that is definitely something you should focus on when you use Instagram to generate leads: the art of #hashtagging.
Similar to Instagram, Twitter is also quite new to the lead generation sphere. Before everyone knew Twitter Cards, many businesses had no idea how they can track leads using Twitter. But a lot has changed over the years, and Twitter—like every social media platform is wont to do—expanded and evolved.
Twitter is now the place to go to for hot celebrity gossip and fresh memes. You’ve probably also noticed that Promoted Tweets are getting more priority on your feed. Again, it’s all in the algorithm. Twitter also uses hashtags, and for a platform that only lets users say one or two sentences per post, it’s utilizing them quite well. You can use these hashtags to track mentions of your brand, keywords related to your industry, your competitors, and so on.
Reddit may not be as well-known as LinkedIn or Twitter, but it is actually a top internet discussion website for professionals. Many users seek professional advice on this platform, which you—being an authority yourself, right?—can use to your (marketing advantage). By jumping on to Reddit and making yourself visible, you can build and reiterate your status as an influencer and an industry authority. You can find questions posed about areas within or related to your niche, and you can provide your two cents to increase awareness of your brand.
Just be mindful of the comments you make online, though. Responding to comments with a short phrase like “buy my products” could actually get you labeled as a spammer right away. Start engaging with people through Subreddits by asking relevant questions to avoid being kicked out of the platform.
Overall, we can all agree that social media channels are not just about branding anymore. Any startup brand can take their business to the next level by using social media to generate leads online. Aside from nurturing existing brand-consumer relationships and getting all the updates on what’s fresh, what’s foul, and what’s trending, you—as a business owner or marketer—will undoubtedly get more value from your social media accounts by utilizing them to attract inbound leads.