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Feb 11, 2014

Connecting to Friends: 7 Tips for Friendly Facebook Marketing

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Connecting to Friends: 7 Tips for Friendly Facebook Marketing
Remember when Facebook was about being too close for missiles, and switching to guns? Maybe you don’t. What started a decade ago as a way for friends to keep in touch as they went off to college has blossomed — or exploded — into something far, far greater. While it certainly remains a powerhouse in the arena of social media, Facebook has also become a world-leader in terms of marketing.
But you’re not a global conglomerate; you’re a small, independent start-up or a musician still working on that first domestic tour. How can you take advantage of all that Facebook has to offer so you can better make yourself known, and more importantly, ‘liked?’

1. Make it Personal

You can wade deep into the internet and be overwhelmed by websites, blog posts, lists, promises, hopes and dreams, that are all written in dull words and lifeless styles. What’s more rare is to find a piece of writing or a webpage with individual personality, something that you read and think to yourself, “Gee. It sounds like a real, live human being wrote that.”

From a consumer perspective, we don't expect much from a business-esque Facebook page. So when a brand like Havahart creates a post like this:

funny Havahart post - facebook marketing tip

We are truly impressed!

This is something our friends would post - that's what makes it effective and socially engaging. Don't think from a propaganda perspective, think from a friends' perspective. Humor is a pretty safe bet.

While that may not seem like it would amount to much, having a personable, identifiable voice on your Facebook page will allow — and encourage— users to connect and identify with what would otherwise be just another sterile internet presence. You’re the one writing all your posts, so make it sound like you.

2. Establish a Unique URL

If you’re planning on taking your Facebook presence to a higher, more professional level, you’re going to want people to be able to find you. Furthermore, once people find your page, you’ll want to have a URL or a name that is memorable enough for your loyal fan base to remember where you’re located and come back for me. Fortunately, once you ‘friend’ someone or ‘like’ a page, it becomes pretty easy to show up regularly on a newsfeed.

That said, you don’t want people to see your latest post and think, “who the heck is this?” and promptly delete you.

3. Cross Pollinate

Sure, Facebook is a fantastically diverse way to connect with people from all around the world, but why stop there? A successful, interactive user experience will allow for multiple types of media. Throw in a video from YouTube showcasing your newest song or performance.

Tap into the immediacy of Twitter to see what people are talking about, and redirect them to your Facebook page. People enjoy variety in what they see, so throwing in a picture, a video, or whatever else you can think of will go a long way in holding people’s attention.

4. Get Real

So your Facebook page is blowing up. You have people throwing ‘likes’ around like confetti at a Mardi Gras party. That’s great, but what allows your online friends and fans to become real-world customers or supporters? If you operate a store or an office down on the corner, or if you’re an artist getting ready for a big show, use your Facebook marketing to entice your internet following out to meet you in the real world.
Advertise a special deal on Facebook for people who come to shop with you at a certain time, or set aside free tickets for an event for whomever comes up with the best name for a new product. Establish a connection between ‘liking’ you on Facebook and real-world privileges and prizes.

5. Be Sponsored

Facebook’s sponsored stories
Facebook’s sponsored stories can be very successful in bringing a lot of the aforementioned concepts together. Sponsored stories come from real users as they connect with your product or service, oftentimes with location-based technology. If someone stops in for a cup of coffee at your café, or purchases something from your online shop, the sponsored story will show that on a newsfeed with the intention of encouraging their friends to check out whatever it is you’re selling or giving away.
Furthermore, sponsored stories are the most effective form of Facebook advertising on mobile apps. Your next customer could be right down the block!

6. People Like You!

Go onto any professional or celebrity Facebook page and take a look at what you seen on the walls or in the comment sections. Tons of people are crying out in admiration and loyalty, right? How often does it happen that whoever’s page it is actually responds to those comments? Responding directly to people who are engaging in your Facebook page will tell them that someone has an interest in what it is their saying.
Country Lane Furniture on Facebook - marketing tips

This is a 95% positive ratings example from Country Lane Furniture showing how we don't need to focus on sheer quantity. With just over 1,000 Likes, Country Lane has sustained a 4.5+ star rating. This is much easier and ideal for a small to medium sized business. Why? Because we can focus and give attention to every social interaction. Business marketing in this realm is not overwhelming enough to ignore or put off social branding tactics. Especially loyalty service marketing.
Remember that loyalty breeds loyalty, and anyone who gets a ‘like’ or a comment in return will remember that.

7. Use What Facebook Provides

Advertising through Facebook is easy. They want you to do it, so why not take ol’ Facebook up on the offer? It is the surest way to create a Facebook audience for yourself, outside of participating in some kind of international scandal — which may not be good for business. Many people use Facebook’s built-in advertising system to great effect, and now, as this article draws to a close, you can too!

Just remember everything you’ve learned here today, and you’ll be well on your way to making a whole slew of new Facebook Friends.

Photo credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

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