Online Trends

LinkedIn Success Stories: B2B Companies That Transformed Their Brand with Social Listening

If any social media platform can be called “essential” for B2B marketers, LinkedIn is it. The professional networking platform has over 900 million members in over 200 countries, a user base that includes 65 million decision-makers. Unlike most social networking sites, LinkedIn profiles are centred on professional roles, employer relationships, and work history. It’s a network with clusters based specifically on business-themed content and relationships. In short, it’s a gold mine for today’s B2B marketer.

If your company is simply using LinkedIn to broadcast content, you’re likely missing a rich stream of opportunities that aren’t visible to you. The ability to listen on LinkedIn is equally as powerful as the ability to post. But periodically doing manual searches and scanning analytics won’t yield great results. That’s why most sophisticated marketers use software platforms to conduct social listening on LinkedIn and other social networks. 

Social listening allows you to automatically monitor LinkedIn and receive notifications for triggers that you define. By tracking references to your brand, products and company leaders, it allows you to:

  • Maintain a constant pulse on activity related to your LinkedIn profile
  • Spot criticism or crises early, and take action quickly if warranted
  • Measure the effectiveness of your social media marketing strategy, and refine it based on rich data.

Social listening software helps you leverage social media for business results, without all the manual effort. With regular automated scans through your social listening platform, you’re free to focus on your core business tasks. 


Monitoring public LinkedIn profiles using SentiOne 

Let’s explore the power of social listening on LinkedIn using SentiOne Listen. We’ll use a fictional example of a company called Flexx that sells equipment to gyms. The first step is to set up brand monitoring by inputting keyword phrases related to Flexx. SentiOne Listen then conducts regular scans of LinkedIn to find any interactions with the Flexx LinkedIn profile that match. Now the team has an up-to-date reporting on:

  • Influential public LinkedIn profiles that interact with Flexx’s profile
  • Which of Flexx’s LinkedIn posts and comments are generating the highest engagement rate
  • Through automated sentiment analysis, a view of which comments are positive or negative. This allows the team to quickly discover unhappy customers and potentially respond to help resolve their grievance.

The marketing team can also use SentiOne Listen to refine the content strategy and make proactive improvements to the LinkedIn page for the company. With social listening they can:

  • Analyze the effectiveness of Flexx’s content and LinkedIn campaigns, assessing reach, volume of mentions, sentiment, engagement, and share of voice 
  • Scan public articles to identify trending topics and hashtags, potentially joining the conversation or creating relevant content.

But why stop with just your brand? You can also scan public articles for references to your competitors and the conversation around their brand and products. Seeing what’s working for your competitors can offer valuable insights for your LinkedIn strategy. With our fictional company Flexx now growing strong, let’s turn to some social media case studies from B2B companies that use social media marketing effectively.


LinkedIn B2B Case Study #1:
How Shopify drives customer engagement through social media storytelling 

Shopify has been a darling of the B2B world for several years, and the e-commerce platform’s dynamic growth is a reflection of their focus on the customer. The company embraces the value of social listening, and recommends it to their retailers. As they explain, social listening allows companies to “tap into vital pieces of information that can inform your choices and help you make better, more profitable business decisions.” Shopify is a great example of a storytelling company that uses LinkedIn expertly for multiple business objectives.

Inform the product roadmap: Shopify has a good understanding of their LinkedIn audience and the influential voices within it. A significant component of their LikedIn profile is devoted to sharing upcoming features and capabilities of their platform. Community feedback, including sentiment analysis, helps the product team assess the success and popularity of the features they roll into the marketplace. It’s a great way to harvest new ideas, discover client pain points, and understand the mind-set of real users.

Find and share great customer stories: Shopify illustrates the importance of storytelling in business. The company motivates entrepreneurs through B2B storytelling, sharing success stories from other Shopify customers. Shopify’s feed is loaded with motivational posts from authentic business owners who share words of wisdom for other aspiring entrepreneurs. They also use contest prizes to encourage clients to share their stories with others. With social listening data behind the scenes, the Shopify team can identify influential LinkedIn users that are interacting with Shopify’s LinkedIn profile. 

Support the community: When you see Shopify customers sharing their success on LinkedIn in public articles, you’ll very often find a Shopify representative joining in the comments with congratulations. Actively cheerleading and supporting clients on LinkedIn is a great way to build loyalty and to make those genuinely-spoken product endorsements reach more people. 


LinkedIn B2B case study #2:
How Wework leverages user-generated content for authenticity 

WeWork leases over 700 office spaces in 119 cities across the globe. The company motto of “community is the catalyst” is evident in WeWork’s LinkedIn profile. The company’s success springs from embracing the feeling of community rather than the physical space alone. They emphasize the opposite of loneliness – the warmth associated with being together and working on common goals. 

While it’s the space that they actually sell, WeWork’s content is mostly about the people. What might seem like a loose collection of images of workers from all over the world is actually a carefully curated brand experience. User-submitted selfies of workers and teams build an impression that working in these spaces is fun! 

WeWork develops an understanding of their LinkedIn followers by using social listening software. They can identify which profiles are consistently interacting with WeWork’s LinkedIn profile. Knowing who your most loyal followers are puts you in a great position to approach them about contributing user-generated content for your LinkedIn profile. Take a tip from the WeWork team: your best and most authentic user-generated endorsements may be sitting out there on LinkedIn already.  


LinkedIn B2B case study #3:
How Semrush innovates by using competitive analysis 

Semrush is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) company offering search engine optimization tools. Gaining attention in the highly competitive SEO software market requires a dedicated effort and a lot of expertise. Semrush isn’t new to this effort, but realized they were struggling to differentiate from others in the competitive field. The company partnered with an agency to set them apart from competitors, increase engagement and improve customer loyalty. 

The agency used both social listening software and manual research to analyze Semrush’s competitors, discover industry trends and identify how competitors were approaching these topics in their social media content. The result, which plays out across Semrush’s social media channels, was a new set of brand guidelines allowing for more whimsical humour. While the company posts more frequently on Twitter, you’ll see the new brand personality played out on their LinkedIn profile as well. Their LinkedIn posts are a healthy mix of highly useful advice and tips for professional marketers, mixed with insider humour – let’s call them marketing jokes – that their target audience can relate to. It’s an uncommon mix of memes, polls, questions, and advice, but the end result is a unique voice in a crowded field that is highly relatable to the professionals they cater to.

Semrush uses social listening tools to monitor conversation on the company’s LinkedIn profile. By joining in active conversations, they continue to grow their reach well beyond what their posts can provide. In the first month after they put the new social media plan into action, Semrush generated over 250,000 impressions and nearly 18,000 engagements


Tips for using LinkedIn social listening tools 

If you are new to social listening tools, here are some tips to help you effectively start using social media for marketing: 

  • Choose keywords/phrases carefully: To ensure you’re not missing important conversations, consider variations of the phrases you choose to target. For any type of product out there, there’s usually several ways to reference it. 
  • Dedicate time and people to analysis: While social listening is powerful, it can’t rewrite your social media plan. Ensure you book some time for a deep-dive on a regular basis.
  • Ensure the right people have the right info: People aren’t afraid to rant on social media, and you probably don’t want 50 people at your company panicked by a notification of a harsh review on LinkedIn. Use alerts and notifications for those who need to know and those who can take action.
  • Join the conversation: Look for opportunities to engage with LinkedIn users who care about your industry, brand, or products.
  • Manually scan private conversations periodically: Social listening is great for public profiles on LinkedIn, but won’t access restricted conversations like private groups. 
  • Consolidate social media accounts: You can integrate all of your social media listening data into one software suite, allowing you to track LinkedIn alongside other platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. 


Take a closer look at B2B social listening for LinkedIn

Each social media marketing case study we’ve featured has a unique approach for LinkedIn social media, using LinkedIn for sales, and creating compelling storytelling in marketing. SentiOne Listen combines the traditional capabilities for analyzing and reporting on social media platforms with a powerful layer of artificial intelligence. It allows you to measure your company’s LinkedIn effectiveness, grow your network, and identify and engage with social leads. For more information or to book a demo, visit SentiOne.