Why Variety in B2B Marketing Doesn’t Always Mean Viral


From the consumer to the CEO, variety is a natural part of business. Both B2B and B2C products come in different stripes to suit either people’s preferences or certain situations they experience everyday. What’s more, innovations and new technologies only add to the selection.

Naturally, these varieties have in impact in the B2B Marketing department. Different strategies sprout up in response to a new type of business-customer situation and create new tools for the job. A recent example is the way social media marketing helps content goes viral; quickly spreading it even beyond digital.

The popularity of viral content marketing reflects both its highly publicized nature and the fact that it utilizes new media and the internet. It’s a trend that hits both ways. It adds to the variety of communication that marketers access (or at least outsource).

It even has plenty of variety in of itself! There’s more than one way to spread viral content. Examples include:

  • Word of mouth
  • Email newsletters
  • Instant messaging
  • Micro-blogging

But regardless of method, just putting in some stunning or thought-provoking content is enough to start off your viral strategy. A new study coming from the University of Trento in Italy, takes a look at what types of visual content have the most viral potential on Google. Although the study focuses on this one social network, the implications of its findings are intriguing and provide insights that can translate to other social platforms.

Not all social interactions are created equal though. According to the study, getting a +1 or a comment indicates a different user motivation than a share does. One hypothesis is that a +1 and a comment are both acts of admiration. That is, if a user comments on content in Google, he or she is giving that content a nod of approval—a virtual thumbs up.

But for all the hype it generates (literally), viral marketing doesn’t always make for a good B2B marketing strategy.

When views or likes increase in numbers, it is natural to think that the marketer is doing the right thing. But honestly, if an account is just opened on any social network and do literally nothing, the numbers will surely go up. Social media numbers go up regardless of absence of real activity. Likes or views are just usually vanity metrics because they look good, but in reality they do not show the content posting translates into actual business.

Hence, you need to go back to the importance of variety. The reason why it exists is because they’re to suit different marketers, different markets, and ultimately, different people. While you should add some variety to address new challenges every day, that addition doesn’t always have to include viral.