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BlueScope Steel: Marketing Automation

Secured 25x ROI, turning transactional commodity selling into a differentiated service

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BlueScope Australia and New Zealand supply a large percentage of all flat steel products in the region, employing nearly 9,000 employees at more than 100 facilities and distribution centres in Australia and New Zealand.

In a highly competitive market where imported steel products were squeezing prices and, ultimately, margins, BlueScope Distribution needed to revolutionise its sales and marketing process.

For this, they called on The Lead Agency.

A marketing challenge is a selling challenge

Like many organisations, BlueScope’s sales and marketing efforts were product-led. They listed the product, and the price and sales were reasonably adequate thanks to its significant brand presence and service quality. However, the market was changing, and the efficacy of this strategy was nearing its end. 

The increased challenge for marketing was articulating and engaging a market with preconceived service and price ideas. Efforts to provide quality leads were based on relationships and brand awareness (a “look at me” approach).

Conversely, the sales team struggled to get in the door and start building relationships with prospective clients when all their prospects expected the old pitch: premium prices for a homogeneous product. 

A new strategy was needed to get ahead of the changing economic and manufacturing environment.

Knowledge-led marketing

Over a 12-month period, we worked hand-in-hand with BlueScope to transform their traditional selling approach into a strategic service utility by focusing on delivering value propositions that made price irrelevant.

BlueScope had knowledge capital, experience, and a unique understanding of the manufacturing industry and processes. This understanding became the platform for developing a strategic model of selling real value-added services through knowledge, not just a product. 

Together, we developed the Steel Efficiency Review. The Steel Efficiency Review not only helped to transform the success of marketing and sales efforts, but it also transformed BlueScope Steel’s selling approach to one of customer closeness and genuine understanding of their prospects’ business challenges.

Instead of comparing price and availability with competing suppliers, marketing efforts focused on greater segmentation understanding and targeting to produce more leads and better-quality leads. 

The marketing campaign was executed through a multi-channel direct response strategy with simple and insightful creative executions, lead management and lead nurturing through direct mail, impact mail, telemarketing, digital marketing, and relevant content development and distribution.

Marketing and sales realigned

As trust was gained and strong relationships forged very early in the sales cycle, the buying journey—from awareness to the transaction—was shortened substantially. 

The Steel Efficiency Review provided a platform where BlueScope could listen first, identify value, build a partnership and make the price conversation irrelevant. 

A year after the launch, more than 850 appointments were generated as part of the program. Additionally, over 2,200 businesses were nurtured and continue to be exposed to the program, generating significant revenue returns. The Steel Efficiency Review has now become integrated through the business.

The benefits of the program include:

  • $25 revenue for every $1 marketing investment
  • A real competitive advantage: No other competitor is offering this solution
  • More leads and better quality leads (a reduced focus on unit price) 
  • Better relationships with clients through a greater understanding of business challenges.

Revolutionise your marketing

When market dynamics change and outcomes lag, it’s not enough to casually pivot as your competitors do. If you want to lead, you have to do things differently. 

The Lead Agency works to discover strategic marketing opportunities that are out-of-the-box, revolutionising the way you approach your prospects to revamp your results. 

Secure stronger digital marketing outcomes with The Lead Agency. Contact us today for a free consultation.
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“The Steel Efficiency Review strategy has re-invented the way we build relationships with prospects and clients. Focusing away from price and using the Steel Efficiency Review as a value-added has given our team the opportunity to start relationships earlier in the selling process.”

Peter Zafiris – National Marketing Manager: BlueScope Steel – Sheet Metal Supplies

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