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Salesforce and Sprout Social Extend Partnership to Strengthen Social Media Strategy in B2B Marketing

ByHuey Yee Ong

Jan 30, 2024

Salesforce and Sprout Social Extend Partnership to Strengthen Social Media Strategy in B2B Marketing

Salesforce is taking a proactive step in strengthening B2B marketing strategies through an extended partnership with Sprout Social. Traditionally seen as a consumer-centric platform, social media has evolved to become a vital component in these strategies. Salesforce, a leader in this domain, has strategically expanded its social media footprint across more than 150 channels. This expansion reflects a holistic approach that harnesses social media not merely as a marketing tool, but as an integral facet of the customer journey.

Salesforce and Sprout Social

In 2022, Salesforce formed a strategic partnership with Sprout Social, a leading social media management platform. This alliance has been instrumental in enhancing Salesforce’s capabilities in areas such as social listening, analytics, and direct message management.

This collaboration has empowered Salesforce to harness the full potential of social media, transforming insights gleaned from these platforms into actionable strategies that extend beyond marketing. This integration of social media intelligence is pivotal in shaping the company’s approach to growing awareness, sales, and customer satisfaction, particularly in the B2B sector. The integration of Sprout Social into Salesforce’s ecosystem, including Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and Tableau, has streamlined the process of gathering insights from social media, thereby enabling more informed decision-making across the organization.

The Rising Influence of Social Media in B2B Sectors

The impact of social media in driving consumer awareness is widely recognized. However, its influence in the B2B sector is equally significant. Key decision-makers in the B2B realm increasingly rely on social channels for initial information gathering and self-guided research about potential business partners. This trend was highlighted by Marissa Kraines, Vice President and Global Head of Social Media at Salesforce, who noted a shift in information-seeking behaviors, with more individuals turning to social media channels over traditional websites.

Since Marissa Kraines assumed her role in 2019, the social media team at Salesforce went from a modest team of four to over 20 dedicated professionals. This team, embedded within the corporate marketing organization, handles a diverse set of functions, ranging from branding and creative development to community management, analytics, and influencer marketing. The team’s collaborative nature extends beyond the marketing department, encompassing content organization, communications, and external partnerships.

Leveraging Analytics for Comprehensive Insights

Salesforce’s approach to social media is rooted in data-driven strategies. By utilizing social listening tools, the company has been able to extend the value of social media insights beyond marketing, impacting sales strategies and overall company direction. The team’s ability to condense complex data from various social channels into digestible, actionable reports has been a significant contributor to this success. These insights are shared across departments, ensuring that the entire organization benefits from the wealth of information available through social media interactions.

Targeting Prospects Across the Sales Funnel

Salesforce’s social media strategy is designed to engage prospects at every stage of their journey. This approach recognizes that a significant number of potential buyers may first encounter Salesforce through casual interactions on social platforms. The content strategy, therefore, is carefully crafted to blend seamlessly into the target audience’s daily social media consumption, whether they are casually scrolling through Instagram or actively seeking business solutions on LinkedIn.

The Critical Role of Social Listening

Social listening is the key to Salesforce’s social media strategy, offering real-time feedback and insights into customer sentiments and campaign performance. This real-time feedback is particularly valuable in evaluating and refining ongoing campaigns, such as the “Ask More of AI” campaign featuring Matthew McConaughey. The insights gained through social listening are instrumental in shaping the direction and messaging of these campaigns. According to Scott Morris, CMO of Sprout Social, tapping into social channels to understand real customer conversations is crucial, as the insights gained from these interactions are invaluable, providing a deeper understanding of not just the brand’s direct audience but also the broader conversations occurring in the market.

Proactive Engagement and Crisis Management

Salesforce’s proactive approach to social media involves staying ahead of relevant conversations and effectively managing potential crises. The team uses Sprout Social to set alerts and trigger actions based on certain keywords and topics, ensuring that they are always part of relevant discussions. This level of preparedness and responsiveness is essential in maintaining Salesforce’s reputation as a responsive and engaged brand on social media.

Customer Engagement and Brand Image

Customers expect more than just passive brand interactions; they seek active engagement. Salesforce meets this demand through the integration of Sprout Social’s Smart Inbox, which consolidates messages from various social media platforms into a single, manageable flow. This integration allows for efficient prioritization and response to customer inquiries and ensures that customer service remains a key component of the Salesforce social media strategy. Additionally, Salesforce focuses on humanizing brand interactions by nurturing online communities, celebrating positive customer experiences, and fostering a network of brand advocates. This emphasis on genuine, human-centered interactions enhances Salesforce’s brand appeal and creates a relatable and approachable image in the digital space.

Salesforce’s innovative approach to social media sets a new benchmark in B2B marketing. The company’s holistic strategy, encompassing analytics, customer listening, and authentic engagement, demonstrates the immense potential of social media in building brand awareness, driving sales, and enhancing customer satisfaction in the B2B realm. As Salesforce continues to pioneer new ways of leveraging social media, it serves as a model for other B2B companies looking to harness the power of these platforms for business growth and customer engagement.

Featured Image courtesy of:
Salesforce Logo: Used from Wikimedia Commons
Sprout Social Logo: Used from Sprout Social

Huey Yee Ong

Hello, from one tech geek to another. Not your beloved TechCrunch writer, but a writer with an avid interest in the fast-paced tech scenes and all the latest tech mojo. I bring with me a unique take towards tech with a honed applied psychology perspective to make tech news digestible. In other words, I deliver tech news that is easy to read.