If our connections are truly the soul of B2B marketing, how can we ensure that we’re doing the best we can to nurture our existing network while simultaneously seeking out and building the right new business relationships?
In 2023 we have more opportunities than ever to reach out and initiate new business connections — almost a daunting number of options from new social platforms such as Threads to traditional email and others — yet doing so in a meaningful way has become nearly a lost art.
Similarly, the channels we have today for nurturing and growing the business relationships we already have are greater in number than ever, yet taking the time to utilize them and actually strengthen our existing network has also fallen by the wayside in some cases.
B2B marketers can turn this situation around and reach new heights of stronger connections both old and new in a few simple steps.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways to supercharge the soul of B2B marketing: our connections with the people we know and our strategies for making new business relationships.
Finding The Right New Connections For Your B2B Marketing Objectives in 2023
Whether it’s building brand recognition, increasing brand awareness, finding relevant industry influencers, or seeking new potential customers, finding the right connections has grown increasingly important in 2023.
Some of the newer places where B2B marketers have turned to seek out new connections include:
- Meta’s Threads Social Platform
- Twitch & Kick
- LinkedIn Live Broadcast Audiences
We’ve recently explored several facets of Threads and what the platform can offer B2B marketers, in “Thread Count: 4 Key Opportunities For B2B Marketers On Meta’s Threads Platform,” and “Threads vs Twitter – What Does The Battle Mean for B2B Marketers?”
We also looked at Mastodon and other Twitter alternatives in “B2B Twitter Alternatives: Mastodon, Post & Others Offer New Marketing Opportunities,” and with the platform’s shift to “X” branding, another round of B2B marketers have left the longtime short-form content staple, following an earlier exodus brought about during its ownership change.
Real Connections From Digital Channels Old & New
In the B2B marketing world, one of the biggest beneficiaries of the “X” turmoil has been Microsoft’s LinkedIn*, which has seen its user base steadily climb towards the one billion mark, hitting the 930 million mark in May, 2023.
As the longstanding king of the business side of social media platforms, LinkedIn has simultaneously sought to gain new users by expanding on its core capabilities while also remaining true to its traditional B2B roots, with a wealth of data-backed reports, frequent infographics, and ample amounts of both short and long-form video content specifically for B2B audiences.
We recently took a look at one such report, in “What B2B Marketers Need to Know from LinkedIn’s New Benchmark Report,” and examined some of LinkedIn new profile features in “15+ Top Tips For B2B Marketers To Optimize & Humanize LinkedIn Profiles.”
Where you look for new business connections — whether it’s one of the newish digital hangouts we’ve looked at or a tried-and-true channel that’s been around forever in Internet years — will depend on the audience demographic you’re targeting and where they a likely to most often spend time online.
Demographics only tell part of the story when it comes to who prefers which social platform, however, so it can sometimes pay dividends to spend at least a little time looking for relevant new B2B connections in unexpected places.
Whatever the channel, giving your time and attention to someone in a meaningful way — and making a difference in a connection’s professional life and helping to overcome roadblocks — often naturally earns enduring trust in an unforgettable way.
Nurturing B2B Relationships New & Old
Taking the time to truly nurture your business relationships means different things to different people, however one universal element is making a dedicated effort to strike up new conversations and to show that you are genuinely interested in dialog, and not simply checking names off of a list.
Going to the next level and helping others find key connections using the power of your own network not only helps those you connect with one another, but helps you become a business connection matchmaker.
Part of the expanding power of B2B influencer marketing comes under this heading, as the sharing, co-collaboration, and support that industry subject matter experts and creators provide for one another are proven ways to elevate business efforts for everyone involved.
For a more comprehensive deep dive into some of the fundamental elements of engaging connections, check out our “Enduring Engagement: 5 Easy Ways To Build New B2B Marketing Connections & Make Them Last,” and we hope that some of the tactics and insights we’ve shared here will come in handy as you make your 2023 the year of making and nurturing connections.
*LinkedIn is a TopRank Marketing client.
Lane R. Ellis has over 39 years’ experience working with and writing about the Internet. He writes for and manages all of the posts on the award-winning TopRank B2B Marketing Blog. Before joining the team here as Social Media and Content Marketing Manager, Lane spent more than a decade as Lead Editor for the prestigious conference firm Pubcon. When he’s not writing about B2B marketing trends, Lane enjoys distance running (he’s completed 11 marathons including two ultra-marathons so far), genealogical research, cross-country skate skiing, vegetarian cooking, and spending time with his wonderful wife Julie Ahasay and their cats Kukla, Twister, and Arlo in beautiful Duluth, Minnesota.