Facebook has now passed 500 million users and it is a social media platform that cannot be ignored. Many companies are struggling with their efforts to use it effectively. There is also a lack of research on how to best useFacebook for brand marketing. So when I came across this Facebook research report conducted by the Altimeter group I thought it was worth sharing.
As 70% of brands indicated that they planned to increase spending on offsite social media involvement in 2010 (including Facebook) so it is imperative that companies have the right guidelines so they save time and money in their efforts for Facebook marketing success.
The “8 Keys To Success for Facebook Marketing“ as indicated by Altimeter
1. Set Community Expectations
This includes what fans expect from brands such as deals, tips, support or just news and information.
2. Provide Cohesive Branding
Create a familiar experience for fans and differentiate a brand’s page from other brands. Brands must complete their profile information, upload branded logos and maximize profile pictures. Create custom features and applications that resonate with your brands theme
3. Be Up To Date
Keep interaction high with with fresh timely content. Suggestions are things like ensuring that you have the right mix of of conversational and promotional posts and updates. Post content using the 80/20 rule: 80% should be informational, educational or have entertainment value. Only 20% of content should be specifically about the brands product or services.
4. Live Authenticity
Build trust by personalizing interactions with a human touch. Post should be written in first person, using a conversational tone. This will enable deeper relationships and brand loyalty. Administrators should have their names and photos displayed.
5. Participate in Dialog
Connect with customers by fostering 2 way dialog. Two way dialog spurs interaction, trust and the spread of information. When fans comment, acknowledge them and reward the individual for participation and publicly thank them for being a fan.. Direct conversations with consumers cascades to their network. Each time a fan comments on a Brand’s Facebook page, that interaction is shared with an average of 130 friends.
6. Enable Peer to Peer Interactions
Be efficient and enable the crowds help. Customers are already talking to each other and brands should enable this natural behavior. Harnessing the crowd’s energy helps reduce costs and improves the experience for fans. Ask fans to respond to each other, showcase fan contributions and recognize top contributors on Facebook’s wall. Take this engagement to the next level by enabling Facebook’s discussion board features. Participate in these discussions and feature”customers” top questions and answers.
7. Foster Advocacy
Foster word of mouth – the holy grail of marketing. Prospects trust customers more than they trust brands, so promoting advocacy is an essential strategy. Start by simply asking existing fans to suggest the page to others or “like” a wall post. Take it to the next level by encouraging fans to do something on the page that is worth sharing with their Facebook , eg “voting on something” or “sounding off” or even sharing videos or photos. Create polls and contests.
8. Solicit a Call to Action
Bring it back to business and provide a succinct next step. A “call to action”. Many brands fail to deliver simple calls to action that lead from fans from engagement to purchase. The idea is is to eventually sell more of one’s product! Start with simple, yet immediate call to actions on your landing page and wall page. Ask fans to “Like” your page, sign up for emails or newsletters. Lead new visitors and existing fans to custom tabs where they can view exclusive deals, browse products and make a transaction.