Social media usage has become so pervasive that supply chain companies that aren’t active on social media are at a disadvantage now.
Think about it. Your customers, competitors, partners, and employees are all using it. Your potential new leads are using it. Either your company is meeting them there or it isn’t.
Social media for supply chain?!
According to a survey we conducted, these are the top four reasons that supply chain companies are choosing to participate in social media:
- Increasing the visibility of their company (95%)
- Brand image (90%)
- Establishing the company as a thought leader (86%)
- Attracting new leads and customers (82%)
Yes, yes, yes and yes. Social media (done well) accomplishes all those in ways that traditional outreach efforts simply can’t in this B2B buying climate.
Customers today are demanding value beyond the sale. Social media allows you to showcase that value.
3 main ways social media helps the supply chain
Simply put, these are the three main ways social media can be incredibly useful to the supply chain.
Social media creates a community allowing for two-way interaction with customers.
Customer engagement is key. The possibilities for engagement are endless and driven by your brand image, your intended audience, and your overall marketing strategy. But there’s room for it all: humor, emotion, objectivity, and information.
In a nutshell, social media helps you communicate your brand personality to your audience, differentiating you from your competitors.
Social media offers a platform for you and your team to educate your interested audience.
What can you share? Lectures from conference, an exciting product launch, a more efficient process. You can talk about issues that are relevant and maybe even unsettling to your industry. You probably have an opinion, maybe even a solution.
Whatever you decide, here’s the beauty: you establish your knowledge and credibility to prospective customers, who then trust you and feel comfortable buying from you.
Social media allows your business to keep an eye on peers, competitors, research, potential clients, suppliers, prospective employees and business partners! That kind of information in real time is invaluable.
Social listening, or social monitoring, is the process of monitoring social media to identify and assess what is being said about a company, individual, brand, product, or service. Through social listening, your company can gain market intelligence.
This works in the same way for your own company. You can immediately and at any time learn how your company, products, and services are being perceived by others. Again, that’s instantaneous intelligence that can drive customer engagement decisions and inform your larger marketing and growth strategies.
The best social media channels for the supply chain
Where can you do all this communication, education, and monitoring?
The top networks used by supply chain and logistics companies are:
- Twitter (94%)
- LinkedIn (86%)
- Facebook (77%)
YouTube (50%) and Google+ (45%) are networks which are also commonly used within the supply chain and logistics industries.
Every day, conversations are (or should be!) taking place on these networks about your company, your products and services, your industry, and your competitors.
These conversations not only provide invaluable (and often strategic) information to you, they also serve to shape and define your company image and your brand message to an audience that increasingly doesn’t fathom any other way to receive it.