By Irina Skaya
Facebook was among the hundred words of the Top Marketing Buzz Words of 2008. Many brands have been on Facebook for a couple of years now, but only a handful are successful in this social platform, meaning only a few have active fans who engage with the fan page on a regular basis. Some marketers approach my agency to help them build brand awareness and customer loyalty on Facebook, while others already have a presence in the world’s largest social network, but are not sure how to acquire more fans or engage existing fans. Based on my experience with managing our clients’ Facebook fan pages, I’ve developed the following ten best practices for Facebook fan page management:
- Dedicate a social media manager to monitor the page several times a day, in order to remove any comments that illustrate abusive, obscene, or defamatory language. Develop a crisis management plan in order to respond to inflammatory comments in a timely manner.
- Determine the brand voice of the page and integrate fans’ wall posts with the brands’ posts in order to encourage conversation between fans and foster a community.
- Include a legal disclaimer on the fan page that encourages fans to respect other community members and refrain from using abusive, obscene, or defamatory language. Examples: www.facebook.com/dove, www.facebook.com/halls
- Comment on fan posts rather than just drop a post, a link, or a picture periodically on the page is crucial in order to add value to the posts with additional information and foster conversations.
- Integrate other web properties and Facebook applications in order to enable fans to do more and spread the message about your brand. Examples include fan page badges, applications to the brand’s blog, Twitter handle, etc. (See www.facebook.com/cocacola)
- Leverage company celebrities/spokespeople to communicate with fans, speak on behalf of the brand about the brand, and its unique selling proposition. If the CEO has a corporate video blog, it can be integrated into the Facebook fan page. Examples: www.facebook.com/yobabyyogurt
- Provide fans with incentives, including coupons, product locator application, tips, new product announcements, news, and other resource information. Offering an informational resource allows a brand to target a new demographic, outside of those that already know and love the business. Examples: http://www.facebook.com/herbalessences; http://facebook.com/internationaldelight; http://facebook.com/redmango.
- Pay attention to the Facebook insights in order to understand which posts are truly motivating your fans to interact.
- Make your fans feel special. Reward fans for participating, let them know you are watching and foster further engagement. Make a fan of the week, allowing fans to badge their page and site with something that clearly marks them as an extended member of the brand family. Example: http://www.facebook.com/dunkindonuts
- Don’t assume your Twitter audiences are your Facebook fans, too. You will have a healthy minority who are on Twitter, but the community that participates on Facebook trends to be different than those on Twitter.
Do you have any best practices for managing brand Facebook Fan Pages or successful case studies? Feel free to share them here!