Being relatively anonymous is a reality most B2B companies have resigned their fate too. As several B2B marketers will attest, their days are filled with far less excitement and glamour as compared to their B2C peers.
Blogs, white papers, infographics are usually a staple in the B2B marketing world. But just because you’re marketing to businesses, doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun.
Case in point, Maersk.
The world’s largest container shipping company beat out 500 other competitors at the European Digital Communication Awards in 2012 and forever changed the way we’d look at a B2B marketing strategy.
On their official blog, Maersk Line Social, the company said,
“Social media is a mindset, a way of thinking and working together. It’s based on the fact that we are social animals, and that means we can only benefit from sharing our thoughts and ideas with each other.”
It doesn’t have to be boring
Whether it’s creating stunning birdseye view time-lapse videos on Vimeo, or showing their support on Instagram and Facebook, to engaging their audience with Live videos, Maersk has challenged the status quo when it comes to their social media presence, taken those traditionally B2C-friendly platforms and made it their own.
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It’s highly unlikely that all of Maersk’s 2.4 million followers on Facebook are clients or even prospects; they just love their content and keep coming back for more!
Don’t be afraid to show your brand’s human side
Social media is a fickle thing. One minute you’re loved, next you’re an outcast (we’re looking at you, UA). The best strategy? Keep it real. Maersk did just this. When one of its container ships accidentally hit a whale, they didn’t try to cover up the “unfortunate incident at sea”, they owned up to it.
Showing their human side, they carried the whale back to port and put up a small announcement on Facebook. They even created a Pinterest board in memory of the whale.
You won’t have to wait forever
The payoff, in terms of lead generation, from a strong social media presence in the B2B space may be slow compared to the traditional methods. But when it comes to engaging your audience, increasing awareness, and building loyalty, it remains the undisputed champion.
Even if lead generation is your number one priority, you can take solace in the fact that 66% B2B marketers found social media key to their lead generation strategy – that’s up a whopping 61% from 2012.
With careful focus on what works best for each platform, Maersk was able to draw in a loyal audience, take even a, dare I say, boring industry, and set themselves apart from their competitors
Your employees will love you for it
Maersk’s strategy of using social media as a method of communication over marketing was never a mistake, it was their intention from the start. In a press release accepting their 2012 honor, the company said it was “about connecting and engaging, not about pushing [your] products.
Besides keeping a loyal external audience hooked on to their social media, Maersk in no way falls short of keeping their employees actively engaged.
With improved press coverage, brand awareness, and engaged employees, it’s clear that Maersk’s efforts with social media have has been well worth it!