There seem to be so many social media sharing options today at the bottom of blog posts, web pages and other content marketing assets. I’ve seen some blog posts that include as many as twenty different social sharing options at the end of the post. I’m afraid when there are that many choices, people will just glaze over and opt not to share the content. In my opinion, especially for B2B marketing, it is much better to have a few very focused choices.
Most importantly, I think B2B marketing professionals need to know your audience and what social media content sharing options are most appropriate for them. For most B2B marketers, I’d recommend that there be clear individual choices for Twitter, LinkedIn, and emailing the content to a friend or colleague. These are going to be the primary methods of sharing B2B content. Depending on your audience you may also want to include Facebook. (A lot of people would say a Facebook sharing option is must, but in many cases, I’m not sure how relevant it is for most B2B marketers…yet.)
Be sure to include email as a way of sharing. I see a lot of blogs and other content vehicles without email as a sharing option. While it’s great to have sharing options that get the content in front of a lot of people, I think the most impactful possible endorsement is when a prospect emails something to a colleague on the B2B buying team, saying, “Hey, look at this.”
As far as the other social media sharing options, I think it’s okay to include some other social bookmarking sites, but again these should be limited to a few that are most relevant to your audience. I think we all want to be inclusive as possible when presenting social sharing options because we don’t want to leave an option out that somebody may prefer to use, but by presenting to many choices, I think we run the risk that readers will choose none of them.
ShareThis is a good option for providing readers with additional options for sharing. This way, there is a simple icon that has lots of choices behind it.
By limited the number of social sharing options to those most appropriate, I think you’ll find the amount of times the content gets shared actually goes up. I’d be interested in your thoughts.