When it comes to the effectiveness of influencer marketing, we often talk about how it benefits consumers like you and me and drives sales for the brands. But what about the brands whose target consumers are other brands? Does influencer marketing work for them, too?
Most people say no. But, the answer is actually yes, and here are some of the top B2B influencer marketing campaigns that prove it!
Top B2B Influencer Marketing Campaigns
Microsoft partnered with NatGeo to conduct a wonderful campaign to motivate more women to participate in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) and change the world. Known as #MakeWhatsNext and launched on International Women’s Day in 2017, this campaign partnered some of the top adventure photography influencers and told real-life inspiring stories of women scientists.
These influencers also conducted free workshops for women. What resulted was one of THE most successful influencer marketing campaigns ever! Microsoft was able to reach more than 91 million people through this!
InVideo is an online editing tool for small businesses, educators, and enterprises. Although InVideo simplifies video creation and editing, as with any other software tool, people using it for the first time may find it a bit difficult.
So, the brand conducted an influencer marketing campaign where they displayed some of their famous clients and professional videographers using the tool. They also run an informational YouTube channel where a famous vlogger makes frequent appearances to explain how to edit with InVideo step-by-step.
You might think that it would be difficult to promote financial services using influencer marketing campaigns. That’s where you’re wrong. American Express did it wonderfully using their #AmexAmbassador campaign.
They teamed up with small business owners who talked about all the benefits of owning an American Express card. The goal was to attract more businesses, and it worked!
IBM, the multinational tech corporation, knows that employees are the best advocates for any business. So, they ask employees to promote them on social media including posting custom tweets. This method is known as employee advocacy.
But, one of their most successful B2B influencer marketing campaigns was the IBM Watson campaign. IBM Watson is the company’s portfolio of AI tools that makes business easy. To showcase this, they partnered with fashion designer Gaurav Gupta and created the world’s first AI-inspired saree. Fitted with color-changing LED lights and IBM’s technology, it would change colors!
Cisco is a company that develops, manufactures, and sells hardware and software along with various other tech products. For their B2B influencer marketing campaign known as Cisco Champions, they invited top IT experts to share their industry knowledge on podcasts, radio, and video.
These champions enjoy early access to products, so that they can use them and share their insights and opinions on social media. This worked really well because it allowed customers to make informed decisions!
SAP develops software that helps manage your business operations. It holds the Sapphire Conference annually which brings together industry experts as well as users.
During one of their conferences, they invited influential industry experts to talk as keynote speakers via live video streaming. All of the experts they invited had a significant influence on SAP’s target audience. The speakers shared their knowledge on skills on topics such as Internet of Things, machine learning, and data analytics. Viewers were encouraged to ask questions and clarify any doubts they had.
Not only did this campaign serve as a “how-to” session, it also let people ask specific questions from the comfort of their home. Later, SAP reused these videos across their social media platforms.
TopRank Marketing is a B2B marketing agency that used B2B marketing campaigns to attract businesses. They specialize in content marketing, social media marketing, and influencer marketing.
To promote their services, they collaborated with some leading marketing experts from top brands like Facebook and LinkedIn. All of these marketers contributed by providing amazing marketing advice. TopRank, then, combined all of the advice and turned it into four free eBooks. Some experts also gave their unique marketing insights in the form of interviews which were also published.
This campaign became a roaring success with more than a 1000 leads generated for TopRank. This was because the eBooks and interviews were filled with highly-valued information.
Okta is an identity management company built for the cloud that caters to businesses. It helps companies manage and secure user authentication. We talked about how IBM uses employee advocacy. Okta, on the other hand, uses customer advocacy because it knows that customers are a great asset in any marketing campaign. Since they are existing customers, you can be sure that their reviews are authentic.
Okta invited testimonials and user experiences from reputed businesses that had used their tools. One notable testimonial came from the CIO of 20th Century FOX who talked about how Okta reduced a lot of the workload, making business easy. They also shared statistics from other clients like Adobe.
Now known as Spectrum Internet, the company provides internet and phone services for businesses. Just like Okta, this business has also used user testimonials in their marketing campaigns.
Their previous clients talked about how the company has helped their business and encouraged viewers to download a free eBook called “Mighty Mid-Market.” This eBook had all the information about how Time Warner’s connectivity solutions could help their business (such as increased internet speed, saving money etc).
Introhive provides revenue acceleration to companies through sales intelligence and data quality management software. But, they soon realized that the legal community was reluctant to adopt CRM solutions. So, they came up with a free playbook that helped legal firms sharpen their competitive edge and grow.
This book answered all the biggest problems faced by people in the legal industry. They used events such as the Legal Marketing Association conference to promote this book using keynote speakers who were professionals in the industry. They found the problem and provided solutions, making this campaign a success.
Jon Cooper, Point Blank SEO’s founder and author, drove traffic to his site by guest posting on other famous SEO blogs such as Moz and YouMoz. He wrote a guest essay about link-building for other SEO websites.
This article increased the number of subscribers for his own website, and continues to do so even today. So, guest posting is a way of advertising your own products and services while also educating the audience.
B2B Content Marketing Strategies Using Influencers
All the examples we saw above used influencers in their B2B campaigns. But, their content marketing strategies differed. Here are some B2B marketing strategies in a nutshell:
- Free eBooks that have highly-valued information from experts
- Employee advocacy
- Customer advocacy in the form of testimonials
- Creating “how-to” and review videos of products using industry experts
- Collaborating with another brand
- Using branded hashtags
- Guest posting
- Inviting experts to speak at conferences
Now you are equipped with the knowledge required to conduct your very own B2B influencer marketing campaign and make it a success. Use this knowledge wisely and don’t forget to share it with others!