Social Branding Part 2
In part one we took a look at the why and now lets look at how to create an effective Facebook page so you can amss fans, manage comments and the best practice methods to grow your fan base. First we need to decide on the best tools to use for the job and there are a lot of them out there! Like anything else though there are good ones and there are bad ones and we do not have the time to test them all.
I have been using FanPagePro 2.0 and I love it. The main thing that sets this tool apart from the rest is you pay for it once ($17) and you own it. No need to have a monthly subscription that you have to keep paying or your fanpage goes away. Just set it up on your own site's account and you are ready to go.
When building your fan page focus on the design and layout and if you are not good with HTML and CSS it would pay to hire a web designer to give you a hand. If you dont know of anyone I can help you out, please feel free to contact me and we can review what you need and get a price quote for your page(s).
Tips for building a better community
There are 5 golden rules to follow when building and managing your Facebook account. Doing it wrong can cost you more than you know, but doing it right can give your business a huge boost that you cannot get with any other form of advertising.
- Don't Censor Negative Feedback - If you have been in business for any length of time you already know that you cannot please everyone. With social media it is not only possible but it is a fact that someone that is not happy with your product or service is going to post on your fan page. The first instinct is to panic and hide this negative feedback so that no one sees it. Censoring your customers is the fastest way to loose their respect. Instead use this opportunity to communicate with them, find out what went wrong and try to correct it. Even if you do not succeed, others are going to see your effort and in all but the rare occasion as long as you did everything you could to make it right they are going to side with you because they will see the customer for what they really are. This is a very powerful tool that will win you new customers faster than anything, so take advantage of this and look forward to getting the opportunity to show potential customers how much you care and stand behind your product or service.
- Don' Spam your followers - Nobody likes spam and they will un-follow you and tell all their friends to stay away if you do this. It is a very fine line between what people consider spam and what is good advertising. Lets face it Facebook does a good enough job plastering ad's in our face as it is and there is nothing good going to come from you giving it to them on the other side. Surveys have shown that on average 40% of respondents said thy removed a friend because all they did was try to sell them something. Keep the advertising to a minimum and start a discussion with your friends instead.
- Link Sources - As #2 pointed out, this should follow along the same lines. Don't continually link back to your sales page or to special offers. Instead understand the interests of your followers and offer links to valuable information or even to an offer that has nothing to do with you. Of course I am not asking you to link to offers from your competitors but it is a great way to get noticed if your friends find value in what you sent them. How many times has someone told you about something and told you who told them? I would imagine quite a few times...
- Promote your social pages - Don't be afraid to post links to your social media page everywhere you can. Unlike the Field of Dreams, just because you have created a fan page or a website does not mean they will come. It takes work to promote your pages and if you think you can just set it and forget it you are wasting your time. Link to it on your website, your blog, other peoples blogs, set it in your email signature and post it on your other social media sites. Word of mouth is a fantastic way to get your name out there but remember that people are not always going to be able to remember it, so think about adding it to your business card or write it on the back when you get the chance to give one out.
- Create value in your content - one key thing to remember is just like in tip #3, figure out what interests your friends have in common, what they like and what they are sharing with you and others. Take that and figure out a way to write about it and share with them.
I hope I have helped you to understand how social media works and ways to get you started. Check back from time to time and I will surely be writing more on this topic. Social media is a fantastic way to get ahead and to earn your potential customers trust before they buy. This is a key factor in making them return customers and we know that good customers spread the word, but with social media they don't even have to be a customer to spread the word if they know you and like you!