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Facebook Says: These Are the Brand Strategies That Increase Engagement

March 5th, 2013 ::

Facebook: You're doing it wrong!When I saw the email from Hootsuite for their HootSuite University presentation, Facebook Brand Pages: Rules of Engagement with Jason Li, Lead Strategist with Global Creative Solutions at Facebook, I thought, “This could be all about how to spend your money advertising on Facebook, or how to really use Facebook from the company that makes it.”

Guess what? It was mostly the latter. Here’s what I learned:

1 – Focus on growing your fan base

The absolute biggest thing you should focus on with Facebook is growing your fan base. As Li said, “Without a fan base, you have nothing.”

Spend some time on Facebook Insights and look at the days and times when your audience engages with your posts. Schedule your posts for those times to reach as many fans as possible. When your fans interact with your posts, their friends will see it in their news feeds, thus allowing you to reach a bigger audience and grow your fan base.

2 – Understand social behavior

If you want to create quality engagement, you must understand – and then marry – two things:

Why do customers love your brand in the first place? Li said, “If you look at Starbucks’ wall, there are a lot of images – of their logo, packaging, storefronts, employees. People have an emotional connection to Starbucks and respond to those images.” To figure this out, you can ask your fans what they like, but you can also look to see what posts they have responded to the most.

Why do people share content on Facebook? Li explained that sharing content extends beyond sharing to liking, commenting on, and creating content about your brand. This is a trickier question to answer, so see below for Li’s 4 fundamental reasons that people share content on Facebook.

3 – Learn why people share content on Facebook

We share content on Facebook to:

  • Make our lives easier – Help your fans learn something new, discover something inspirational, or reward them with savings or tips.
  • Build relationships – Start a 2-way dialogue by prompting your fan base and asking for meaningful responses, recognize/celebrate your fans, make your fans smile. Li said to think about your significant other and how you grow and nurture that relationship; apply those same ideas to your Facebook fans.
  • Help others – Ask your fans for feedback and be open and transparent. Li basically said, “Take advantage of the fact that people like to share what they think.”
  • Craft our identity by sharing what we like – Enable your fans to express who they are, and think about how can you help them do that.

4 – Two final tips

  • Don’t create posts simply to fill space. Post at least 1-2 times/week but no more than 5 times/week. “My friends don’t post more than 5 times per week,” said Li, “and neither should your brand.”
  • Use Facebook Insights. Improve your use of Facebook by looking at how many people you reach, how many people engage with your posts, what time you should post, your demographic base, etc.

Li shared a lot of examples of how brands engage with their fans on Facebook, so the presentation is worth watching if you’d like to learn more.

I have to say, a lot is written about Facebook, but this is probably some of the best advice I’ve ever heard/gotten. Will this information change the way you use Facebook? How?

Image courtesy of funny-pictures.funmunch.com

The views expressed here are the author's alone and not those of Network Solutions or its partners.

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