How To Use Facebook For Marketing

facebook-marketingFacebook has published a Best Practice Guide for how to use their platform for marketing. The guide provides a great overview of the marketing potential in having a presence on Facebook as well as suggestions for some strategic steps to go through when building a presence. In the following are some of the key points from the guide.

Depending on what type of business or brand you are, there are several advantages by being present. If you are in need of formulating some goals for your Facebook initiative – here are some clearly defined objectives:

• Foster product development and innovation – Learn about your target audience and understand their interests. Use for instance Facebook to crowdsource your next product idea.

• Generate awareness – Use a Facebook Page to generate awareness and connect with your audience. Use some of Facebook’s targeting capabilities such as Ads or Sponsored Stories as a marketing tool.

• Drive preference and differentiation – On Facebook, people discover your brand through referrels from their friends. Use Facebook to bring your brand to life for your customers in real time.

• Increase traffic and sales – It is possible to create viral promotional events, publicize offers or run Deals.

• Build loyalty and deepen relationships – When people like your Page, you have the opportunity to create personalized experiences and to drive engagement  and loyalty over time.

• Amplify recommendation and word of mouth – Use Facebook’s social and viral potential by building sharing into all of your activities and campaigns.

• Gain insights – Observe your customers and their actions to improve your business and stay aligned with the people you serve.

The Facebook Ecosystem

Facebook ecosystem

However, it takes time building a Facebook community that corresponds with these goals and the objectives described above cannot be achieved from one day to another. This is where the Facebook ecosystem comes in. In the guide, it is described how it is possible to grow and nurture your community by three different activities:

• Build your presence with a page

• Engage your fans

• Amplify your presence and create word of mouth

The ecosystem is therefore not to be seen as three exclusive steps, but rather an ongoing process where you keep builing, engaging and amplifying along with the insights you gain from your community and customers.

Last, but not least, the guide also provides you with 5 concrete guiding principles when getting started with a Facebook initiative. This includes advice on integrating Facebook with your marketing efforts, making a good tone of voice and creating content that is sharable and social in nature.

1. Build a strategy that is social by design.

2. Create an authentic brand voice.

3. Make it interactive.

4. Nurture your relationships.

5. Keep learning.

You can download the full Facebook Guide here (pdf) for more information on the objectives, different tools and cases.

Clickbait: Information overload! How can brands cut-through all the noise?

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 10.11.34You won’t believe the hidden message in this blog post! Or rather – there isn’t one, I just wanted you to click through and read this. But bear with me – I’m about to suggest something incredibly controversial – a never-heard-before admission by a social agency!*

As much as clickbait is the emotional catnip of our online experience and can drive consistent traffic for publishers like The Daily Mail and Huff Post who churn out multiple stories each day, it’s still hugely annoying to discover you’ve been duped by an over-excited headline promising to give you all the feels. For brands, adopting the same practice can negatively affect perception and ultimately – sales. So how can brands cut through all the sensational copy and deliver successful results without falling prey to creating clickbait themselves? How do they beat them rather than join them?


Platform crackdown

In the early days of social, Facebook optimised content based on engagement, meaning that if users clicked on a piece of content, it received a higher ranking in newsfeeds. In 2014 Facebook took steps to try and crack down on those gaming this ranking using clickbait, and in February this year it introduced an update based not just on what users engaged with in their feed, but what they wanted to see. Facebook’s advice is that Pages should avoid encouraging people to take action (such as encouraging lots of clicks), because this will likely only cause temporary spikes in metrics that might then be rebalanced by feed’s ranking over time – meaning the latest ranking favours content that users naturally engage with rather than content that users click on through coercion.


Last month Instagram followed suit and announced it would alter user’s feeds to optimise the content users “care about the most”, and Twitter has also adopted a similar change (although users can opt-out and revert back to the chronological feed). The changes will hopefully make it harder for clickbaiters to game feeds with meaningless content, but the real aim for the platforms hosting is to surface more engaging content more frequently so users return often and stay longer.


The same goes for brands on social. If the content they produce is consistently engaging, then users will interact more frequently, leading others to discover it through preferred ranking. Ultimately, these new newsfeed algorithms exist to generate more meaningful engagement, driving not just clicks, but conversations via comments, and shares.


Learn and adapt

Meaningful engagement begins with relevant content that creates value for the user and the brand. While an insight-driven content strategy is key to delivering this, brands should also adapt stories and messages based on the emotional needs and behavior of their audience. This is more than just a case of ‘test and learn’ or refining what has already been done. Brands must also evolve their approach in line with new behaviors, platforms, competitors and rankings or risk being left behind by those who do.


A good example of a brand that does this well is Buzzfeed, who’s CEO recently shared their new strategic thinking, revealing how their objective has changed from getting users to click through to their main site to view stories, to allowing content to be consumed directly on other platforms. The new direction was prompted by analysing which content generated clicks and discovering that users prefer to consume some types of content within the platform they are already on. The company also found a discernable difference between user interactions with the same content on different platforms, demonstrating how content demand and consumption vary across sites. What spreads like wildfire on Facebook might fail miserably elsewhere.


Relevance is key

For brands looking to use social content to drive click-through to their site, it’s important to balance the goal of the company (clicks to eyeballs, or conversions to sales, for example) with the desire and behavior of users on different sites, and monitor response over time. Relevance is key to interaction, and brands that think like publishers will know that relevance is an ever-changing chameleon. While users are bombarded with meaningless clickbait, there is ample opportunity for brands to channel the social zeitgeist by delivering valuable content that meets audience needs in the format, time and platform that suits them. If they get this right, they won’t need clickbait.


At Mindjumpers we help companies and brands to think as publishers and provide end-to-end social media management across multiple markets, encompassing full social strategy, planned and reactive content creation, analysis and reporting.


If you’d like to find out more please get in touch.


*Don’t be naughty and scroll to the last paragraph – I’ve hidden the controversial part somewhere to optimize your dwell time in finding it!