Your brand on Facebook: How not to get lost – Part II

Best Practices Set #2: Engaging customers on Facebook is about, um, engaging

  1. Speak directly to your fans. Let them profit from their ‘fanship’. Do not copy-paste boilerplate communications. The copy that looks good on your brochures, website, press ads is completely verboten, forbidden, taboo on Facebook.
  2. Post status updates every day. That shows fans you are an active participant, not just riding the Facebook bandwagon.
  3. Ask questions to spark conversation and activity on your Page. A good strategy to increase activity on your Page is to pose questions in Status Updates. People will then reply answers on your Page giving it more dynamic, community-driven look and feel.
  4. Engage your customers through polls and contests. Host contests within your Facebook Page like video or photo competitions that get your fans generating content. You’ll really get to know what customers think of your brand and its products.
  5. Delete nothing, Ignore nothing, unless it offends your other fans too. Fans have egos; they can react very violently if their post is deleted. They see it as censorship. Better, reply to every post. Even if the fan posts a one-word comment like ‘cool’ or ‘nice’, respond with a gracious thanks. If there is a negative comment, reply using facts.
  6. Enhance your presence with applications. There is no such thing as a free lunch even in social media marketing. Facebook pages are free for all brands, yes, but unless you have some exciting applications to lend that ‘Facebook spirit’ you’re not going to get anywhere.

    Check out aerie by American Eagle’s virtual gifts app, “aerie kiss & tell” (that lets users to send virtual kisses of all kinds – birthday, flirty, friendly, good luck, etc. to their Facebook friends).

  7. Reward your customers with giveaways, sweepstakes, and sale coupons. Give your fans an appropriate incentive to associate their social identity with your brand. For example, Levi’s does a good job of alerting fans about special deals. Indeed, make a special deal just for Facebook fans.
  8. Partner with causes your customers care about. People like to be seen as well-meaning and caring on Facebook (however selfish they may be in real life). Associate your brand with causes your fans associate themselves with. Target, Guess, and Gymboree are involved in social causes that they share with their fans.
  9. Bring the conversation offline. Anthropologie is a good example of how you can use an Events tab to keep your fans in the loop of local events that are coming up. Creating opportunities to meet your fans in person and having flows between your online and offline communications can help put a face to your Facebook marketing efforts.
  10. Leverage trends on Facebook. Try and integrate talk about the latest movie, the latest book, current events. But that doesn’t mean losing your focus. e.g. if you are running a chemistry page, you can post an update as, “Well, reviews of {insert latest superhit movie} talk of the great ‘chemistry’ between {name of hero} and {name of heroine}. What do they mean by ‘chemistry’ here?
  11. Make judicious use of Facebook ads. To repeat, Facebook does not give you a free lunch.



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About ozymandias

What am I? A body and brain, products of carbon concatenation chemistry, an intelligence and conscience to enable bits of DNA evolve. Maybe a pharaoh, maybe a dung-beetle, never more than a safe conduit for some genes.
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