The Impact and Importance of B2B Influence Marketing
The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.– Ken Blanchard
With the rapid adoption of social media over the last 20 years, how we access information, network, and influence each other has changed dramatically.
With social media allowing anyone to have a voice and gain a following, it’s easy to understand the rise in the number of online ‘influencers.
As most people understand it, an influencer is any person who can influence the behavior of others. Celebrities, athletes, and Instagram influencers probably spring to mind. While their ‘influence’ level may vary according to popularity, it is usually those individuals who’ve made positive contributions to societies that wield the most influence.
This definition of influencer mainly applies to business-to-customer interactions. However, businesses themselves often influence their competitors and even entire industries to follow suit and adopt new practices.
Technological innovations in the B2B and Industrial sectors push and influence others to change. Companies that offer solutions to real-world problems lead by example and are thought of first on particular subjects.
Today, companies across all industrial sectors contribute to creating greener solutions by making their products more environmentally friendly. Improving efficiency, designing new technologies, and utilizing new materials are ways these companies influence their industries.
For B2B companies, influence is based less on popularity and more on success and innovation. Companies that invest in the future and contribute positively towards society are more trusted and regarded as thought leaders in their field—giving them considerable influence and dictating the industry’s direction.
Stakeholders are also holding B2B companies to higher degrees of expectation and expect them to act in a manner that promotes environmental and social stewardship.
This marketing of influence helps shift the collective thoughts of an industry and impacts new ways of thinking. Over time this new way of thinking begins to drive markets.
An example of this new way of thinking can be seen in the food waste and energy sectors. Companies like LOESCHE Waste Conditioning and A TEC are investing in creating systems that turn organic waste into fuel at cement factories, helping them reducing emissions and their environmental impact.
Companies that lead in sales are not necessarily the same companies that lead in influence. Companies that add value and make significant impacts through innovation and thought leadership are the ones who drive their industries forward.
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