Updated B2B Facebook Page Examples with Data

This short post is to let you know that we updated the 10 Examples of B2B Facebook Pages post. As that has been one of the most popular posts on this site, and still generates regular traffic, we wanted to make sure the information was updated where readers are still going. But the best way to let you know about something in an old post is to write a new post that shows up at the top of the home page, in RSS and in email subscriptions. That was just a tip I hope you caught.

The original post now has a curent number of Likers, since they are no longer fans, and some updated observations about best practices and changes to the pages. Since I can’t let this post go without putting a little content in it, the following is a list of the pages and increase in people who like the page since December 2009. Note that over this time, Facebook users increased nearly 43% from 350 million to 500 million and almost all of these B2B Pages grew faster. The CDW Employee Perks Program page must not have worked for them, as it no longer exists.

Page Dec 2009 July 2010 %Increase
Dell 51,183 183,554 259%
Cisco 24,289 74,400 206%
Salesforce 3,569 8,513 139%
Sodexo 2,069 4,194 103%
Cintas 1,156 2,260 96%
Gartner 2,059 3,943 92%
Hubspot 8,046 14,123 76%
Forrester 2,593 3,726 44%
Ernst & Young 34,478 47,611 38%
CDW 753 0 -100%

And always, if you have B2B Pages that you think are doing a good job providing information and creating engagement, or just doing something different, let us know in the comments below. You can even share your own if it is worth sharing.

Blackberry Apps for Your B2B Sales Force

After covering BlackBerry apps for B2B marketers and PR professionals, this week we’re taking a look at BlackBerry apps that facilitate B2B sales.

B2B salesmen and women are constantly traveling, and their nomadic lifestyles demand mobile support. In the field, even a laptop can be cumbersome, so it’s important to have sales solutions that fit in your pocket.

As the go-to choice for most sales teams, it makes sense BlackBerry has many apps designed to close deals and deliver results:

1. Salesforce Mobile

Customer relationship management (CRM) is an integral part of an organization’s sales strategy. Salesforce.com, one of the most popular solutions, has a mobile version for users to upload customer information in real time, right after important customer calls, e-mails and visits. The app helps to manage sales and prospect data outside of the office, which equals less time at your desk and more time in the field.

Thanks to a recent Salesforce update, the Mobile Lite app is now free for all Salesforce users, including Group customers.

2. Oracle Mobile Sales Assistant

If you use Oracle as your CRM system, its Mobile Edge app will take your CRM data on the road.

Mobile Edge puts all of the traditional CRM account, contact, opportunity, activity, lead and ticket information on your BlackBerry, syncs with your phone’s address book and utilizes custom objects, pre-loading device data, centralized administration and interface mapping. Its latest update in October 2009 introduced support in 12 languages, opening up new opportunities for global B2B companies.

While this free demo will give you a peek into the mobile app’s features, you’ll have to contact your Oracle rep for full installation and connectivity.

3. Kindle

E-book readers have become a part of B2B marketing tool kit, delivering novels, industry e-books and blogs (like Social Media B2B) in one sleek package – but what if that package is still too big for salespeople on the go?

Amazon just released a beta BlackBerry app that puts more than 400,000 books on your smartphone. Kindle owners can access their libraries and notes, and the app automatically synchronizes your last page read and annotations.

While it’s not a replacement – BlackBerry Storm owners will be at an advantage, as Bold, Curve and Tour screens require constant page turning and squinting – the Kindle app for BlackBerry extends the convenience of an e-reader.

4. VQ Mileage Tracker

Tracking mileage and gas on business trips and customer visits can be tedious and time-consuming. There are many mileage tracking apps available for the BlackBerry, but VQ Mileage Tracker (currently discounted from $14.99 to $6.99) goes one step further and does all of the work for you.

The app automatically calculates mileage every time you’re in the car, and stores the data until you generate a report with information on the date and time of each trip, address and miles driven. The app also uses BlackBerry or Google maps to pinpoint each trip.

5. MyCommission

More sales equals more money, and the MyCommission app ($2.99) helps salespeople figure out just how many dollars they’ll take home at the end of the day.

The app allows you to enter the account name and status (committed, in upside or are pipeline) of each deal and calculates the resulting commission.

What BlackBerry apps have you found to be helpful in the sales field?

Presentation: 10 Examples of B2B Facebook Fan Pages

Last week we published a post 10 Examples of B2B Facebook Fan Pages and it was very well received by our readers. Since one of the goals of Social Media B2B is to educate people about the value and benefits of social media in B2B and provide advice on how to get started, I have converted that post to a slideshare presentation. Now, as you are talking internally about your social media plans for 2010, here is an easy reference to use to discuss Facebook Fan Pages.

The presentation includes some introductory bullets highlighting some of the benefits of having a Fan Page; 10 examples of Facebook Fan Pages including a link, number of fans and a brief explanation of why the page is notable; and a summary page of the 10 examples. Share this presentation with your colleagues and your boss to start the conversation about what you could do with a Facebook Fan Page for your company.

[Updated] 10 Examples of B2B Facebook Fan Pages

July 2010 Update: This post was written seven months ago and many things about Facebook have changed. People are no longer fans of company pages, but they Like them. This causes confusion in referring to them. Are they Likers of a Page? And this week Facebook passed 500 million users. So we saw this as a great opportunity to re-visit this post and provide some updates. All new additions to this post will be indicated. Note that screenshots have not been updated. You can click on them to view the live page.

As Facebook continues to grow, now over 350 million users worldwide, more and more B2B companies are setting up Facebook Fan Pages. These pages give a business a home on Facebook and allows their content to be shared with their fans, in the same information stream with updates and links from their friends. Studies have shown that many people follow brands on Twitter looking for special deals, but Facebook is different. People become fans of companies and brands on Facebook for two different reasons. The first is that they want to keep up with the company and learn more about them. The second is they want to associate themselves with the company. That is they want to express their love of the company with others. The origin of the word fan, after all, is fanatic.

While many large B2B companies and brands do have their fans, and we will see some below, why would someone become a fan of company they don’t love? The reasons are no different than connecting on other forms of social media. These are building relationship with the company, getting value from the content, customer service, and yes, opportunities for special offers. So below are 10 examples of B2B companies using Facebook Fan Pages in a variety of ways.

Dell (Dec 2009: 51,183 fans; July 2010: 183,554 People Like This)

Dell’s Page
features a custom landing page and a set of custom tabs. They also tell people why they should become fans. July 2010 Update: Some have commented that this is a consumer page, and since we published this post, Dell has called this a Consumer Facebook Page and created a Dell Business Page on Facebook with 583 Likers. They have also created a hub listing all of their Facebook Pages and Groups: dell.com/facebook

Cisco (Dec 2009: 24,289 fans; 74,400 People Like This)

Cisco’s Page
does a great job of adding links of other Facebook Pages and other places to find them on the web. July 2010 Update: As this page has grown its Likers, on page engagement has continued to grow. Make sure you read our interview with Cisco’s Social Media Manager about their Facebook Page. That interview occurred as a result of this original post.

Hubspot (Dec 2009: 8,046 fans; July 2010: 14,123 People Like This)

Hubspot’s Page
does a good job of providing content makes people comment. These comments show up in people’s profiles and with the revised Facebook News Feed, updates with more comments are more likely to show in fans’ information streams. July 2010 Update: Hubspot has expanded their wall posts to feature posts from other blogs, as many people do on Twitter, including a recent SocialMediaB2B post (Thanks Hubspotters). They also have regular features like a question of the week to increase engagement.

Salesforce.com (Dec 2009: 3,569 fans; July 2010: 8,535 People Like This)

Salesforce.com’s Page
displays photos and videos, including user-provided ones, from a recent conference. July 2010 Update: Here’s the latest announcement on this page: Facebook has selected Salesforce CRM to manage its fast-growing sales operations.

Forrester Research (Dec 2009: 2,593 fans; July 2010: 3,726 People Like This)

Forrester’s Page
informs fans about upcoming seminars and other events, in addition to aggregating feeds from their analysts’ blogs.

Gartner (Dec 2009: 2,059 fans; July 2010: 3,943 People Like This)

Gartner’s Page
promotes its latest research findings and promotes its events.

Ernst & Young (Dec 2009: 34,478 fans; July 2010: 47,611 People Like This)

Ernst & Young’s Page
was started as a recruiting tool for college students when Facebook was mainly a college-based social network. It’s usage has grown as Facebook has grown. Rather than using a custom tab as a landing page, they use the boxes tab to show a variety of content instead of their wall. July 2010 Update: While they continue to post content on a weekly basis, much of the wall posts are job seekers posting questions and the E&Y page managers responding with comments. They also no longer us the boxes tab as a landing page, people who do not yet like the page go directly to the wall. They do however, have targeted content in other tabs, as they did in December.

Sodexo (Dec 2009: 2,069 fans; July 2010: 4,194 People Like This)

Sodexo’s Page
is also used for recruiting and is a channel for customer service and followup with applicants and interested parties. July 2010 Update: Customer service and communication with recruiters continues to be an important element in this page.

Cintas (Dec 2009: 1,156 fans; July 2010: 2,260 People Like This)

Cintas’ Page
also uses the Boxes tab as a landing page to show a variety of content. There is a large custom graphic promoting their company values, along with links to social initiatives, posted videos and press release. This page also includes a Facebook FAQ describing why they are on Facebook and what is expected.

CDW (Dec 2009: 753 fans; July 2010: This page no longer exists)

CDW’s Page connects employees and partners to an outsourced discount program and they inform their employees about about current items in the program. July 2010 Update: I can only guess that Facebook was not an effective way to manage this program and they moved to a different solution.

And finally, become a fan of the Social Media B2B Facebook Page. It is another way to receive the content from our site, within your Facebook information stream. And we are using Network Blogs to push our feed to Facebook, rather than just importing it to the Notes tab. This provides some additional sharing opportunities for the content.

Hubspot has created an ebook (posted on Slideshare) that features 15 more examples of B2B Facebook Pages. Are there other B2B Facebook Pages that are connecting with fans in different and innovative ways? Let us know in the comments below.

UPDATE (12/10): This post is now available as a Slideshare presentation, making it easier to share and discuss with your colleagues.