3 Go-to Social Media Channels For Technical Brands
In today’s post, I discuss social media marketing that technical, operations-driven, engineering and manufacturing brands should use to get ahead and build their brand.
Social media is all about engagement, building relationships, and keeping your existing community happy (and proud) to be associated with you.
Community, in this case, means your prospects, existing customers, past clients/customers, employees (and their families), investors, media organizations, vendors, creditors, and more!
These are your ‘people’ and your tribe. They believe in the company, the people, and the vision. They want to see your brand succeed. Their success is vested in your success.
As a brand, you depend on them immensely for your success and you owe it to them to manage and invest in that relationship.
Business leaders that understand the power of social media and brand building via relationship nurturing, leverage social media marketing to get ahead.
Some direct benefits that technical brands can enjoy by managing and updating these presences on these platforms regularly:
- Attracting top talent
- Engage with existing employees and showcase your culture
- Attract new vendors and suppliers
- Get on the radar of influencers, and industry leaders and build relationships
- Help avert a crisis and manage reputation
If you are looking for sales or a ton of traffic back to your site so you can convert them, then there are other tactics that work better.
Any of the above-mentioned benefits are good enough returns for medium to large enterprises!
Social Media is not for everyone
I do not want to set the wrong expectations.
When it comes to immediate returns, social media is not going to get them for you – i.e. profit payback in the time you spend.
You have to invest in and build a sizable following to get regular engagements that will allow the top of the funnel to push buyers down towards your purchase stages and help achieve sales targets.
Building a sizable following is hard. It is brand building. You have to engage and give give give.
Did I mention “give”? Because that is what it takes to build trust and a following.
So you are asking at this stage – what can I give?
Value can be anything from information, insights, entertainment, engagement back, creativity, swag, free demos, products, and more.
It is building a relationship. It is investing in a relationship.
Think of the last time you invested in a relationship offline with one person.
How much did you enjoy and give your time? You showed up consistently. Helped out.
Well, you are now looking to do that as a brand manager, marketing manager, or a business leader online – on platforms where you are looking to build thousands of relationships over time.
Many brands that are just starting do not have time for this. They are usually cash strapped and looking for quicker returns.
I understand this. I run a boutique agency and we have many customers but we always have bills to pay. So we are usually in need of new business.
But to get ahead, and exit the rat race, you have to build a following. You have to become known in your space or category.
How can you do that if you do not invest in building meaningful relationships with your buyers in this space?
That means taking time away from an immediate lead generation or quick sales conversions to build your brand.
Social media helps do that. It is not the only tactic to use to get famous in your space. There is paid media, PR, SEO, advertising/paid media, influencer marketing, email marketing, event marketing and more.
The options can seem endless. In this article, I am narrowing down what works for social for technical brands.
Some industries that can benefit from the tips & recommendations in this blog include:
- & others will production facilities
This is because the type of content I will recommend by channel is easily producible in these organization types.
If you are just starting out, invest a much higher mix to the immediate return other tactics – but social is brand-building activities that will pay back 10x if you pass a certain threshold.
It takes time to get there – so always have a small percentage of your marketing budget tied to these brand-building activities. Even in the early stages.
If you have funding or an enterprise brand, then this decision is an easier one to make and a larger portion should be spent on social.
So, with that out of the way – let’s get into the first social platform for technical brands – LinkedIn.
1. LinkedIn and its powerful capabilities
LinkedIn is not only a channel for you to seek jobs or hunt for talent.
It is one of the most powerful forms of social media for most brands.
With its ability to connect with employees, other companies involved in the technical or engineering-based market, and potential partnerships, LinkedIn is considered the best B2B marketing platform.
There are over 310 million active users, many of which are in the 50-65 age range. This means your brand will be exposed to seasoned professionals and decision-makers.
LinkedIn is the best source for generating leads by a long shot compared to other social platforms that – especially when it comes to B2B:
Image Source: HubSpot – Linked 277% More Effective Than Facebook & Twitter
Ok, you might need more than just a push of the button. Here’s what you’ll need to do:
- Set up and complete your company’s LinkedIn profile.
- Share engaging content targeted toward your targeted industry.
- Interact with and add fellow profiles, pages, and groups to build up your audience
- Get your employees to engage on the platform – this one is huge.
- If your company shares an update and your employees provide input, engagement, and shares – well guess what your team is feeding the algorithm to help it gain traction.
Check out how Midas Safety Inc (one of our client partners that we helped within social media marketing 😊 – yes, I know we are biased here!) is thriving on LinkedIn.
By posting regular content, including videos interviewing experienced manufacturers in the company, Midas Safety is building a reputation that is sure to boost its social media presence.
We helped this technical brand go to over 56K followers as their social agency by rebranding their website, creating and curating engaging content, and providing regular updates.
No ads or PPC.
Read some of the other success stories on our partnership with Midas Safety here.
Now augment this social media management effort with their advertising capabilities by job titles, and seniority in combination with their premium service inmail outreach efforts – you have increased your touchpoints with your ideal buyers in each stage of their purchase funnel.
- Brand Awareness = Social Media Marketing on LinkedIn
- Consideration = Advertising
- Purchase/Transactional = Inmail
All within one platform. Pretty powerful, if you know how to use LinkedIn’s capability.
Going back to Midas Safety, since taking over and managing their profile by creating and sharing regular content, we have seen an uptick in the following key areas:
- More followers (5,000+ new in the last 6 months)
- More decision-makers looking at the content
- More engagement from existing followers
- More prospects seeing the updates
All of the above can and does help grow brand equity, brand trust, and trust with key decision-makers in key markets where they are looking to become known.
Versus other platforms, this is where the true power of LinkedIn comes into play!
The best type of content for brands that do well on this platform include:
- Employee updates (this has worked wonders for our manufacturing clients)
- Company announcements (earnings release, new office, new location, new hires)
- Photos of team members and behind the scenes
- Company’s values
- Videos produced in-house (new product launches, capabilities, company history, values, team updates, educational content, etc.)
Many companies are using YouTube videos to both educate viewers and strategically market their professional services. YouTube is often used in the following ways:
- Demonstrates products in use to help viewers imagine themselves using the products
- Shows how-to tutorials on troubleshooting or DIYing manufactured goods
- Gives you insight into the creation of their manufacturing products
A great example of a successful YouTube channel for a technical company is Tesla.
Tesla uses YouTube‘s social media presence to successfully market its latest products and services.
Now you may be wondering – YouTube is a social channel?
More brands consider YouTube to be a social media platform as much as a video viewing channel. YouTube is a lot of things, but it does offer brands to host the following elements to make it social:
- Brand Profile
- Regular content updates
- Content descriptions
- Comments & Engagement sections
If all these above features are not considered social in nature, then I don’t know what is.
Also, after Facebook, people spend more time on YouTube than any other platform:
They have 1.5 Billion monthly active users, and this number is only growing.
That is quite a large number of people consuming video content daily.
So, if your brand is on YouTube, is optimized, and engaging with the right keywords, hashtags, and content, you will get discovery.
Types of content that works well on YouTube for brand pages:
- How-to videos & Tutorials (these have taken over YouTube. YouTube is almost a tutor for everyone or a school – especially for technical products)
- Footage of the team in action
- Team and expert interviews
- Vlogs (your content in video format)
- Courses & expert summaries/analysis
- Event videos
- Favourite or Best of videos
As a brand, especially looking to showcase your technical in-house capabilities or attract talent, YouTube is a must.
Leverage YouTube’s power, its daily users, and your expertise to get good long-term returns.
Twitter is a social media platform that has over 217 million daily users, making it a prime platform for marketing one’s manufacturing business. Most notably are Twitter’s features of sharing, following, and using hashtags to connect to your target market audience.
Obsidian Manufacturing Industries, Inc. harnesses the power of Twitter to reach thousands of followers. By having an established profile stating your company’s location, official website, and a catchy description, you can increase your followers on your business’s Twitter account.
Even as a small business, they fight above their weight and get regular engagement with their following.
Now to many large established enterprises – ~3k users may not seem like much. But it took consistent work to get even this audience size from nothing on Twitter even for a brand such as Obsidian. Also, it’s not only the followers that matter.
It’s your profile views, your engagements, your impressions, and link clicks.
Those metrics matter and start adding up over time.
When those folks are looking to eventually start researching – your impressions, and good sentiment will help your brand stand out.
The goal is to trigger brand recall.
Being active on social with the right messages helps gain visibility and create the right affinities.
The type of content that does particularly well on Twitter includes:
- Threads (a series of tweet)
- Success stories
- Winning “secrets”
- New Vacancies
- Questions & Engagements
- Threads sharing very specific and unique experiences/expertise
- Motivation posts
- Insights (stats, research and other relevant topics)
Twitter is a fast-paced river. You will have to post more frequently and do retweets to get visibility on this platform. Even with that said, nothing beats quality over quantity.
Social media is a long-term play
I have written a similar blog post a couple of years back that goes into more details on more channels that you can find here.
It is catered to manufacturing brands mostly, but other technology-based companies can benefit from the insights and tips shared there as well.
Understand that as a brand manager or a business leader, showing your brand in the right light is the first step in keeping your stakeholders happy.
Stakeholders can be investors, vendors, suppliers, employees, customers, and creditors.
If you are running a business and neglecting social to build the right reputation, you may be missing out on a ton of opportunities from many of the stakeholders mentioned above.
Everyone uses social media to search for a new company to work with and investing in the right messaging with the right channels is key.
And most importantly, you must take the management of your social channels as an investment. It is a long-term play when it comes to management and activity, just the way it is when looking to build the right team. To do that, you must meet the point of entry. Having a social presence in 2022 is just – a point of entry.
How you use it to shape your voice is where your point of difference comes into play.
That difference if done right will allow you to get ahead of your competition in your vertical.
Good luck with your social, and if you need help with social – our team is a quick call away.
From a start-up helping local small businesses, over a span of 5 years, Usman has built Web Worx Labs to be a leading provider of digital marketing solutions that employs 15+ full-time employees and has customers in over 30 countries.
Outside of work and his passion for all things digital, Usman is a proud father of three, loves running and is an avid reader.
Follow Usman on LinkedIn or Twitter as he is always sharing tips on strategy, branding, marketing and analytics.