5 Surprising Social Media Business Success Stories
Chances are, most of the businesses you interact with as a consumer are on social media. Your local restaurant is blogging, your grocery store is on Twitter — even your favorite candy is on Facebook. Companies in mainstream, consumer-facing industries are all over social media.
But how about other businesses? Manufacturers? B2B service providers? Equine dentists? Are they experimenting with social media?
You bet. Here are five examples, all at different stages of their experiments, and all indicating the breadth of business use of social media.
1. Equine Dentist Builds Relationships With Facebook
At least that’s what worked for Geoff Tucker, an equine dentist based in Palm City, FL.
In a business driven by relationships, Geoff says that Facebook allows him to build new ones. “People do business with people who they’re friends with. Period,” he says. “And Facebook is a great way to get to know people. It allows people to see that I’m a person.”
As he builds these relationships using social media, Geoff is also expanding his company’s reach. He says it was his blog, his Twitter feed, and his Facebook account that helped him win appearances on Horse Talk Radio and HorseGirl.tv.
So what’s this done for his business? Geoff says that over the last year, Facebook alone has generated about 100 leads and 10-to-15 customers.
2. Steel Building Manufacturer Taps New Verticals
“It’s steel buildings,” explains Michelle Wickum, director of marketing for the Norfolk, VA company. “How is that going to tie to Facebook? It doesn’t make a lot of sense, but when we looked at the growth in Facebook and social media, we felt we had to get our arms around it.”
About a year ago, SteelMaster put its first toe into the social media water. The company discovered two important applications for their business. First, they found that Facebook is an excellent way to post pictures of customers’ steel buildings. Not only do the pictures engage existing customers — they also demonstrate to prospective customers the range of uses for SteelMaster buildings. “Photography for us is the hook,” Michelle explains.
Perhaps more importantly, SteelMaster found that social networks like Twitter and Facebook gives it exposure to and create demand in specific verticals where it previously had little traction. Chicken farmers and woodworkers don’t typically think to use steel buildings, but when friends and colleagues share pictures of their SteelMaster buildings on Twitter and Facebook, the farmers and woodworkers become interested.