3 Important Ways You Can Use Facebook For B2B Lead Generation

15 Feb 3 Important Ways You Can Use Facebook For B2B Lead Generation

When it comes to using the various social networks for B2B lead generation, the one that’s typically mentioned first is LinkedIn. By some estimates, 92% of B2B marketers are already leveraging LinkedIn for lead generation. That makes sense – of all the social networks, LinkedIn is the one most closely associated with business. That makes it the “safe” choice for B2B marketers, that’s for sure.

However, by focusing too much on LinkedIn, it’s possible you could be ignoring some of the upside potential of Facebook for B2B lead generation. There are several reasons why Facebook has never really caught on as a B2B lead generation tool (i.e. too many people posting photos of what they ate for breakfast), but at the same time, it’s hard to ignore the social network’s 1 billion monthly active users. Increasingly, Facebook is turning into a B2B powerhouse, especially as it transforms into a mobile-first social network.

First, Facebook’s advertising opportunities are much more powerful than LinkedIn’s. Not only are you getting access to a much larger pool of prospects, you are also getting access to some very useful advertising tools. LinkedIn has always been willing to make companies pay premium prices if they want to use some of the premium advertising tools, but Facebook has been much more democratic. If you’re advertising on Facebook, you get access to all of the tools, regardless of your advertising budget.

That means it’s very easy to run a targeted ad campaign on Facebook. You can narrow by demographic factors as well as by psychographic interests – that is, the interests (“likes”) of the people on Facebook. You’re not just sending ads out into the ether, hoping for a response. Instead, you’re able to coordinate a very targeted campaign.

Secondly, Facebook has been much more aggressively promoting video than LinkedIn. The newest tool for brands is Facebook Live, which is a way to broadcast live video to fans. In the case of businesses, this might mean a live product demo, a live product launch, or a behind-the-scenes live interview with people at the business.

Given the rise of video as one of the preferred forms of content on the Internet and the engaging nature of any “live” event, it’s easy to see why Facebook Live has been increasingly embraced by brands.

Thirdly, Facebook can be a powerful way to develop thought leadership in the field. On a very basic level, it means posting links to new webinars or whitepapers. But it also means producing the types of content that is answering the questions that people might have about products, services or features.

Think of Facebook as a quick and easy way to gain market intelligence, a way to seek out opinions and insights, and to get the pulse of the overall market and how people are thinking. You can then either address those issues directly on Facebook, or use all the insights and ideas for a broader content marketing strategy, such as producing blog, video and podcast content that’s specifically targeted to certain groups of customers.

So if you think that Facebook is really just a B2C marketing phenomenon, it’s time to think again. As Facebook grows its audience and makes more and more tools available, it’s turning into a very valuable B2B marketing phenomenon.

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Dominic Basulto

Dominic Basulto is a futurist and blogger based in New York City. Prior to working for Bond Strategy, he was the editor of Fortune’s Business Innovation Insider and a founding member of Corante.com, one of the Web's first blog media companies. He also writes for The Washington Post and the Big Think blog.