What is a B2B company example

Instagram is only for B2C marketing? No! The online service for sharing photos and videos is also spurring B2B marketing. The following examples from General Electric, IBM, Siemens and Liebherr show how this can work.

Instagram now has more than 600 million users, the online service announced on December 15, 2016. More than 300 million users are active every day, posting over 95 million images every day and sharing a total of 40 billion images. A powerful network, then. Large companies like Coca Cola, who have long since integrated Instagram into their B2C marketing mix for addressing end customers, know this.

But what about B2B marketing between companies? When dealing with business customers, many companies still hesitate to use the platform for their marketing. Why actually? B2B does not mean that the target group does not enjoy photos. The online platform offers the best opportunity to give your own brand a face, to emotionalise products and services, to retain customers and to increase the traffic on linked landing pages. Business relationships can therefore be significantly strengthened with the help of Instagram.

Examples of B2B Instagram Marketing

1. Make an impression: General Electric convinces B2B customers with pompous product photos

General Electric (GE) is one of the largest corporations in the world and has recognized the potential of B2B marketing via Instagram - as early as 2011. GE's business account currently contains 799 photos. 273,000 subscribers follow the group. Many of them will have their jaws dropped. Because the group relies on impressive imagery.

You can see photos of employees working on gigantic turbine parts and pictures of huge assembly halls in which multiple units for trains are built - that is as impressive as high-tech images from NASA.

Without many words, the photos underline the competence and size of the group. This is also proven by the many enthusiastic comments from Instagram users.

2. Lufthansa Cargo takes the Follower into the cockpit

Lufthansa Cargo AG transports over 1.6 million tons of freight every year - from temperature-sensitive medicines to competition horses to machine parts weighing several tons. The world's sixth largest cargo airline tells its B2B customers stories with photos on Instagram. Stories from the everyday life of 17 aircraft that cover more than eight billion kilometers every year and head for 300 destinations in around 100 countries.

Employee Felix Gottwald, for example, made himself comfortable in the pilot's seat and posted a snapshot of the cockpit. The caption reads: “Nothing is like hanging out in the pilot's seat for a moment or two.” The enthusiastic comments from the followers: “Aaaaaaah yes! I would love to do that too ”and“ Especially to watch the sun rise and set. ”Plus emoticons with hearts in their eyes.

In addition to the cockpit photo, the Instagram account also shows impressive aerial photos of cities in the dark and airports at night. There are images that emotionalize what appears to be a sober service and thus contribute to customer loyalty.

Lufthansa Cargo uses the company description, which can be seen on the home page of the account, to link a new product. With currently 74,000 followers, this CTA should lead to more traffic on the landing page. Ultimately, it also leads to more leads and sales.

3. For more sustainability: IBM uses Instagram to strengthen print marketing measures

The American corporation IBM uses very simple means for addressing images, despite its size. Example: Some time ago, the New York Times published an advertorial about Watson - an IBM computer program in the field of artificial intelligence that became famous when it outperformed human competition on the quiz show Jeopardy.

The snapshot for Instagram shows an employee holding the double-sided article into the camera with a satisfied grin. In the image description, IBM refers to a product video for Watson. 2,986 followers liked the post, many followers probably viewed the video. Determined among them are also potential customers who will use Watson for Internet analyzes in the future. Conclusion: IBM shows how a simple photo and a concise image description with a link to the product can be used as a cost-effective and effective marketing measure. Without further ado, it leads to multiple media use of the published advertorial.

4. History lessons: Siemens offers time travel through the company's history

And what about German companies? In Germany, Siemens is showing how Instagram can be integrated into the marketing mix. The German technology group managed to gain 43,700 subscribers with just 246 posts. Unlike IBM, however, the company does not post smartphone snapshots, but relies almost exclusively on professional glossy photos.

It shows: workers working on giant rotors for gas turbines, pictures of gigantic cranes loading ships with containers, but also black and white photos of turbines from 1972. These photos invite followers on a journey through time through the company's history . An effective strategy to underline your own expertise and at the same time create a retro mood.

5. Marketing for the child in all of us: Liebherr shows photos of excavators, cranes and cement mixers

Liebherr's Instagram account is also impressive. The family-run company from Switzerland is showing impressive pictures of construction machinery there - of excavators, cranes and cement mixers that are active on the world's largest construction sites. Images that appeal to the little playful child inside us.

When looking at the inside of an excavator cockpit with a view of the huge shovel, one would like to sit behind the steering wheel and start digging. Another example of how products can be emotionalized with images alone. There are now 122 images online, with which the company has won 22,900 subscribers. Ascending trend.

Learnings from the examples shown

It's not just about the pictures. They do attract attention and convey part of the company's philosophy. But without an explanatory short text that briefly describes the essence of what is seen, the viewer feels left alone. Therefore: Write a caption in short, not nested sentences.

But don't give the product itself high praise. Instead, focus on its benefits for customers. And take the opportunity to set a link to a suitable landing page that promises additional information to followers.

Last but not least: Use hashtags specifically - not exaggerated - to accelerate the dissemination of the content. Have lots of fun with it!

Instagram is also suitable for B2B marketing

Since July 2016 it has been possible to convert your own profile into a business profile. There is, for example, a CTA button that companies can use to store a telephone number or a link to their own website. An effective invitation to interact with the target audience. But that's not all: With just a few clicks, companies can quickly convert a post into an advertisement that appears between the videos and images of their target group.

Instagram is a tool that you can add to your marketing toolbox with comparatively little effort. You let B2B customers participate in your day-to-day business, emotionalise products and services and thereby strengthen customer loyalty. The online platform is also suitable for linking products, generating traffic for landing pages and ultimately more leads.

Originally published February 21, 2017, updated January 29, 2020

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