Eric Tung is a social media manager, strategist, consultant, advocate, speaker, and blogger. As a social media manager at BMC Software, he's responsible for event strategy, growing social media communities across multiple lines of business, and leading internal employee social media training and activation.
Previously, at Spark Energy, Eric expanded social networks to nearly 40,000 members within 12 months. He has more than 75,000 personal connections in his networks, and he is one of the 25 most followed people on Twitter in Houston.
I invited Eric to Marketing Smarts to talk about his upcoming presentation for the 2015 B2B Marketing Forum on executive and employee activation and advocacy for B2B social media.
Here are some highlights from my conversation with Eric:
B2B brands can effectively use social media for marketing (but it does require some planning) (03:57): "Here at BMC Software, we have quite a few different campaigns that we've been running. One of them is...talking about the different customers that use the software, obviously, and how they use it. Like Carfax uses it to process data. We've got at least a couple hundred different products at BMC, so even just the breadth of products that we do have, it can be difficult to pare down to social. So, what I'll be talking about at the B2B Forum is how you can get people to understand your messaging and also help contribute to posting on social on behalf of your company."
Empower your employees to use social media...by enacting a social media policy at your company (08:30): "Seventy-five or eighty percent of people that work for your company are probably interested in helping to share your company info on social; they just don't know how to do it or they don't want to get in trouble for it. If you have a direct [social media] policy, you can hep to say 'here are the five things that you never want to do on social' or 'here are the two things that we do want you to do' or whatever. It makes it a little bit easier to get rid of some of the shades of gray and make things a little more black and white for them."
To encourage employee advocacy and humanize your brand, get your company's executives to use social media (21:19): "If your president, your CMO, your CFO, VPs of sales or whatever are all on social, it makes it a lot easier for employees to say 'well, I should probably be there, too'—just because of peer pressure or whatnot.... I think [social media for executives] works both ways—being there for customers and being a more transparent, approachable company, and really just making the person a little bit more approachable in general.
"A lot of presidents or VPs or whatever... a lot of people don't know much about them. But maybe if they post a funny picture or help share their kid's baseball game, or even if they get [ticked] off in traffic or something, it helps to humanize them, makes them a little bit more personable compared to just the person that's in an office that you see walking around the halls every now and then."
Eric and I talked about much more, including the video streaming app Periscope, and the four-step process you can use to get your employees acting as brand ambassadors on social media, so be sure to listen to the entire show, which you can do above, or download the mp3 and listen at your convenience. Of course, you can also subscribe to the Marketing Smarts podcast in iTunes or via RSS and never miss an episode!
Music credit: Noam Weinstein.