This is part one of a two part series covering SMX (Search Marketing Expo) Social Media Marketing 2012 at the Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
I couldn’t think of a better city or venue to host SMX’s latest conference on Social Media Marketing than in beautiful Las Vegas, Nevada. This edition of SMX offered two packed days of in depth sessions, awesome speakers and a live Google + hangout with Vic Gundotra, Senior VP of Engineering at Google Plus.
Day one started with a really great session on Facebook engagement and reach tactics. Speakers included Tami Dalley, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Lisa Grimm, space150 and Annalise Kaylor, Intrapromote.
The session touched on some really great tips and tricks, old and new, to help brands increase their engagement on their Facebook.
Here are my top seven takeaways to make your Facebook brand page ROCK:
1. Determine KPIs before you start posting.
What are you hoping to accomplish by creating a Facebook brand page? Do you want to increase shares? Build an army of “fans”? Or have an engaged community that comments on every post? These are the questions you need to answer before you start to build out your Facebook marketing strategy.
2. Build out a brand style guide.
Successful brand pages know that it’s more than looks that win over fans, it’s about your personality too. Take some time to determine how you want to represent your brand online. Host a brainstorm session with different departments within your company (creative, marketing, PR, HR) and establish a consistent voice, look and tone that will be carried through everything you post on your Facebook page.
3. Time content for highest interaction rates.
Facebook is less about the number of fans you have and more about the number of ENGAGED fans you have. Knowing when, where and how often your fans are active on Facebook will help determine when to post in order to get the greatest ROI.
- Post when your fans are not busy at work – Try posting during non-office hours (8p.m. – 7a.m.) fans are generally more likely to check their profiles during this time (interaction rates are highest on Twitter during 8a.m. – 7p.m.)
- Post as often as 1-2 times a day – Brands see a 19%higher interaction rate when they post no more than 7 posts a week
- Schedule posts for the weekend – Fan engagement rates are 15% higher on Saturday and Sunday. Community management is a 24/7 job.
4. Use Clear Calls to Action.
It’s ok to be a little desperate in social media. We are constantly asking our fans and followers to “like”, share, retweet, pin etc. and… it actually works! Be clear about what you want your fans to do on your Facebook page. A clear call-to-action “Like us, share this, click on this” will receive a 48% higher interaction rate.
5. Be Visual.
Face it, social media has made us lazy and a little stupid. We can’t absorb the same level of written content as we used to (You can thank the INFOGRAPHIC). So don’t bore your fans with long drawn out posts, tantalize them with eye-catching visual content. On average, Facebook posts that include an image receive 39% higher interaction rates.
6. Post questions to drive comments.
If comments are what you are really after, ask questions, and ask them at the end of your post. Seems simple right? Another great option to garner your page more comments are “caption this” contests and fill in the blank questions, both of which drive 92% higher comment rates on average.
7. Leverage user generated content (UGC).
Brand fanatics are amazing people, constantly creating a gold mine of content just waiting to be leveraged by you (the brand). As a brand, you would be smart to dip into this fountain of free content. All original and all unique to your brand. What’s more? Sharing your fans generated content is the quickest way to win a lifelong customer. Plus it shows that you actually care about your fans, and didn’t just create a Facebook page to sell things.
Last but not least, know what works for your vertical. Fashion, health and beauty, food and beverage and sports verticals generally play by their own rules. Use these tips as a loose guideline and never be afraid to try something new. Failure in social is ok so long as you aren’t embarrassing yourself or the brand you represent. One size does not fit all and it will take plenty of time to know what suits your fan’s needs. Be relevant, talk to your fans and ALWAYS provide value to them.
Simone Coucill, PR & Communications Manager