Why Algorithms Don’t Have To Rule The Future of Your B2B Business

If you think too much emphasis is put on social media strategies to grow the B2B business, you could be right. While it is essential for every business to have a social media presence, social platforms are ruled by algorithms that can change without warning. Successful businesses have fallen by the wayside because they failed to think ahead. Brands with enormous numbers of social followers have found themselves with almost no reach because Facebook, Instagram or Twitter rules have decided not to show their posts in news feeds.

The rules that govern algorithms could, quite literally, be ruling the success (or otherwise) of your business. Comgem, the trade ecommerce website specialist, says the penny is starting to drop. Businesses worried about future growth are clamouring to develop their own online communities before they see their reach diminish. The very real fear is that accounts, which may have taken years to build, could be rendered virtually worthless almost overnight.

How algorithms have killed brands

The case of Little Things, a digital magazine, is one of the best-known victims of algorithms. Dani Attard, Commercial Director and co-founder of Comgem, explains: “This business had an enormous reach. Its followers were numbered in the millions. Yet, it found itself unable to connect with fans because Facebook decided to change its algorithms. The mistake this business made was that its model was based solely on a Facebook fan page. The result was that it could not survive.”

The web is littered with complaints from business owners claiming Facebook, Instagram and even Google are killing their sales with ever-changing algorithms. The 2019 Instagram algorithm updates have attracted some particularly brutal comments. Claims that the changes have damaged the user experience won’t hold any water with major social platforms. After all, they want you to pay to appear in news feeds. Their concern is the experience of the average user - not businesses, and especially not the B2B business.

B2B business and social media

When Facebook announced it was to change its algorithms last year, it sent many business owners into panic mode. And for good reason. The new algorithms favour posts from friends and family. It leans much more towards private content.

While some will argue this change was brought about to improve the average user experience, if you put your business hat on, you will see past it. Want people to see your posts? You are going to have to pay. That is the crux of it. The days of free marketing on social media platforms are probably numbered.

Beat algorithms with your own community

The B2B business can successfully build its own online community and shift followers away from social media. By starting conversations with your followers, you can drive them to your own website and engage them there. Encouraging user generated content and improving your own is a sure-fire way to keep your audience close. Coax them to sign up to email marketing with a special offer or free gift and you will have successfully transitioned the future of your business away from platforms you can’t control.

Dani says: “The B2B business needs to look to the future and how it wants to engage with buyers and potential customers. Leaving everything to chance with social media could prove a costly mistake. We advise those in the B2B sector to develop platforms that will engage, inform and even entertain visitors. A good blog and content that is integrated with social media can be used to drive even more traffic your way. And a loyalty scheme is great for customer retention.”

Worried that your website does not deliver the features or user experience to engage an online community? Book a free demonstration of Comgem’s Gemsuite B2B ecommerce platform and discover how you really can beat algorithms.

* An algorithm ensures that rules set by a platform’s computer program are executed in a certain way. Different algorithms can be used for different tasks.