May 17th, 2009
by Amy Dunn
I was inspired to write this post because of a very enlightening conversation with a fellow marketer last week. She works for a publishing company and opened a Facebook fan page a few months ago. I was impressed with the large following she has managed to build and asked her “How do you do it?” How did this company get so many people on Facebook to care enough to become fans? Here is what she revealed:
First, she shared that she had to convince the “powers that be” in her organization that having a Facebook page would be a good idea. They feared what many business managers fear- not having total control over what is said about them publicly. She was able to address this by assuring them if there is negative talk about their company- it will be said regardless. It would be preferable that it is said in a place where they can address the issue and listen to the feedback. Perhaps this could even lead to an improvement in the near future.
Her next step was to organize the masses and utilize the company’s staff to launch the page. She held a meeting with the entire staff to explain what a Facebook page is and the purpose of it. She answered their questions and addressed everyone’s concerns. She also requested that the employees of the company open a Facebook profile and become fans of the page. She was pleased when this resulted in the page obtaining around 30 fans. However, she found the momentum stopped there.
She continued to post information on the wall about their products hoping this would attract interest from the Facebook community. When this approach failed, she realized the most valuable lesson any social media marketer or business owner can learn.
People do not always care about your product or service. They care about THEIR issues and finding solutions.
Once she figured this out, she approached the company Facebook Page with this lesson in mind. Her goal was to become an industry resource for people in her field.
She joined Facebook pages and groups similar to hers to see what they were doing. She participated in these communities by contributing to discussions, answered questions, and shared information. She also researched the best resources in her field and began posting relevant links to articles and blog posts that offered helpful advice and tips. She also sent fan updates frequently so the exhisting fans would have a reason to come back to the page. In doing this, she began to attract more fans.
She revealed that she also sought any opportunity to promote their Facebook page. She posted a link to it in the signature of her email and told me she saw a big spike in new visitors. She also found that posting media such as photos and video and tagging them with relevant keywords attracts new visitors.
What I learned by our discussion is there is no magic program or quick fix to launch a successful Facebook page for your business. While the service is currently free (take advantage while it still is!)- is does require planning and hard work to build your own online community. But the payoff is tremendous!