Time to read: 3 minutes. It wasn’t terribly obvious to the folks at Steelmaster Buildings that Facebook was THE place to be prospecting. After all, the 30 year old company sells prefabricated steel buildings and roofing for industrial, agricultural and military use. Facebook doesn’t exactly pop to mind when you think corrugated steel buildings. As it turns out, Steelmaster is one of the best Facebook B2B examples I’ve found to date. Here’s how the business gets leads and sales—bang right on its B2B Facebook page.
Steelmaster is literally generating and converting leads to new customers—all across the globe—by applying 3 success principles.
Steelmaster’s products are solving unique problems for customers. So the company uses Facebook in ways that allow prospective new customers to witness this fact through photos and videos.
Basically, the success of existing customers is doing two things for Steelmaster… resulting in loads of leads coming in on Facebook. When prospects witness existing customers’ success first hand it:
Steelmaster’s buildings and roofs are literally some of the strongest structures on the planet. Plus, they’re amazingly good in extreme applications. For example, they’re exceptionally functional when protection from earthquakes, hurricanes and other violent acts of nature is needed.
But it’s Steelmaster customers’ ability to apply these product in creative ways that makes it possible for social media (Facebook) to create leads. Steelmaster’s customers have always been good at finding insanely creative ways to apply their products—nifty steel buildings. Facebook simply offers the ability for others to witness the remarkable, meaningful ways customers are applying the products.
Steelmaster is giving customers incentive to tell stories that spread quickly and provoke new customer prospects to contact the company.
You might want to read that last half again because that’s the part that most of us miss—and is why this Facebook B2B example is successful at netting business leads.
Steelmaster’s customers range from everyday people to farmers to movie set designers to small businesses and global non-profits who need reliable housing solutions in extreme conditions. The uses for Steelmaster’s products are visually intriguing and tell many kinds of unique stories spanning dozens of countries and languages. Sure, the company specializes in serving specific industrial markets but there is literally no limit to the creative application of their customers.
And this is how the company quickly discovered Facebook was a hotbed of lead generation activity just waiting to happen.
You see, people love to tell their success stories. Think about the last time you assembled something that you weren’t actually sure you could put together. We humans tend to be interested in showing off our finished creations. And this is especially the case with Steelmaster considering how so many customers are do-it-yourselfers. Ok, so let’s look at exactly what makes this a Facebook B2B example worth talking about.
In the world of Facebook there are few activities more popular than showing off photos. All of this photo-sharing activity spreads across the Facebook networks of friends, family and colleagues. That’s why Steelmaster constantly encourages the showing-off and sharing of constructions projects—both underway and completed. (hmmm… could you encourage customers to show off photos that involve your products/services?)
This is why Steelmaster runs contests giving away $500 Home Depot gift cards to a lucky customer demonstrating the most creative application of their pre-fab steel materials.
The more photo-sharing activity the more success stories get told. And the more success stories that get told the more seeds get planted in the minds of those who see the stories.
That translates to more people beginning to imagine how a pre-fab steel building could serve a specific purpose in their business or personal life. And that translates to customers asking questions—right on Steelmaster’s Facebook page.
And, of course, those questions become leads for Steelmaster’s sales team to nurture.
Steelmaster is giving customers and prospects incentive to share their stories in ways that create leads for their business. Now that’s a rockin’ Facebook B2B example but there’s one more piece here that’s important to remember.
Steelmaster’s products themselves are visually interesting. They’re simple, elegant and functional yet the buildings beg to be photographed and videotaped both in completion and during the build-out.
You see, Steelmaster’s strategy is all about creating curiosity. It’s about leveraging their customers’ success stories to subtlety suggest “you can have this success too” to future customers.
Heck, the “visual spreading” of customers’ success stories are literally worth paying for. They sometimes create reactions—action. And that’s precisely why Steelmaster gives customers incentive to boast. Customer success stories create confidence among people who read them. “Could I do that? Would that suit my need?”
Curious onlookers often find themselves asking—right there on Steelmaster’s Facebook page. Not bad hu? Steelmaster Buildings is one of the best Facebook B2B examples I’ve seen yet. What do you think and do you know of any other Facebook B2B examples?
Photo credit: SteelmasterBuildings
Jeff Molander is the authority on starting conversations with busy people. As founder of Communications Edge Inc. he teaches a proven, effective communications technique to spark buyers curiosity in sales outreach & marketing messages. He's a sought-after sales communications trainer to individual reps, teams of sellers and small businesses owners across the globe. He's an accomplished entrepreneur, having co-founded the Google Affiliate Network and what is today the Performics division of Publicis Groupe. Jeff served as adjunct digital marketing faculty at Loyola University’s school of business. His book, Off The Hook Marketing: How to Make Social Media Sell for You, is first to offer businesses a clear, practical way to create leads and sales with technology platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and blogs.
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