Do you want to know one of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to interacting with big brands on social media? So many of them have strategies that focus on garnering fans with little to no consideration to existing ones. Essentially, you’ll do anything for me to ‘like’ your page, but once I’ve done that, it’s wham, bam, thank you ma’am.
I feel so used.
One of the Biggest Problems on Facebook
Have you ever ‘liked’ a brand’s page on Facebook to be eligible for an offer or contest? That’s a great way for companies to offer value in exchange for a precious spot on your news feed. But once the contest is over, consumers are left with a giant question mark every time they see one of your posts pop up. Why exactly am I still following you? The only thing worse than a brand who forgets their existing followers is a brand who punishes them.
I recently came across a Facebook campaign targeted at new telecommunications customers. If you ‘liked’ the company’s page between April 21st and April 28th, you’d be eligible to get your next 3 bills paid for. But what about existing fans of the page? A quick scan of the rules and regulations showed that existing fans or fans who had liked/unliked the page previously were ineligible. Really makes me feel valued, doesn’t it?
Social media is all about immediacy. How do I feel as a consumer in this moment? How am I being treated as a fan right NOW? I don’t really care that you gave me a contest entry in June 2011 and that’s why I ‘liked’ your page. What have you done for me lately? Suffice it to say, the story of the Facebook fail ended with me unliking their page and blocking all communications from the company.
A Two-Pronged Approach to Content
If you’re working in social media, focus your content strategy to both recruit and retain your fans. Existing fans should never be punished or excluded from your contest because they’ve previously offered you their consent.
There are a few ways to get me to quickly unlike your page: you post too often, your posts are text-based only, your posts are boring, you offer no value to me as a customer or you exclude me from your page’s benefits because I’m an existing follower.
To further delve into the psyche of the consumer, we can look at why people like pages on Facebook. In a recent study done by polling people who liked 10+ business Facebook pages, the top reasons for ‘liking’ were:
– Exclusive deals to social media followers
– Coupons and flyer highlights/discussion
– Contests and loyalty campaigns
– Good content (<5%)
Good content represented less than 5% of the respondent base’s reason for ‘liking’ a page. Think about what that means! There are ample opportunities that exist to recruit fans if you’re willing to put your money where your mouth is. Though the survey seems to suggest that having a good content strategy is not imperative, it’s never a bad idea.
Above all, when you’re forming your social media strategy, think about all of the hard work you put in to growing your social media base.These numbers represent people; the funny thing about numbers is that they can go up and down.