It’s Time to Unlearn Facebook Marketing Tactics
“The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum…”
― Noam Chomsky, The Common Good
Reach is the enemy of sales
Reach and engagement were the two pillars of a successful Facebook marketing strategy. When reach could be achieved organically from a well-placed, lifestyle driven product shot, it was marketing gold. Now reach is mostly achieved by a kitten wearing pants. At the same time, there is a growing market of buyers on Facebook – those who use it as their preferred shopping website. Unfortunately, kittens, inspirational quotes and pictures of models without make up clog your business wall and may ‘put off’ anyone potentially buying from you. If you can’t get reach through cleverly branded original content, then stop focusing on reach and start viewing your Facebook page as a catalogue of products. “But, I need to reach more people to get more fans!?!”, you might argue. Highly targeted ads are pretty much the only answer these days!
Unlearn: Only post one product to every seven engagement and reach driven posts.
Empty engagement is practically worthless for marketing
Click like if you love your children. Oh dear me. Engagement has long been the key to better reach so brands have grown accustomed to posting any old rubbish as long as people will like or comment. Using engagement strategically can improve reach but, more importantly, can give you insights into your customer’s frame of mind. It’s better to ask questions about how your customers feel about a relevant issue or product than it is to simply get them talking. Selling your hairdressing services on Facebook? Ask them about their clothes and shoes and perfume. This sort of discussion will tell you what kind of style they prefer, what budget they have, where they wear their clothes and how high a priority appearance is to them.
Unlearn: Refining your branding message is more important than empty comments.
Cull the fan list; dead wood wastes money
If you’ve taken to wearing your fan numbers like a badge of honour, you’ll hate this recommendation! It is more valuable to have 100 fans that are likely to buy from you than 10,000 that are not. It’s also more cost effective and compliant with the current algorithm. It’s all about percentages. The bigger your fans list the harder it is to have hot percentages. Get rid of dead wood. In the top right drop down select ‘Use Facebook as your page’ and then click the ‘heads’ icon. Select ‘see all’. Scroll down the list and remove anyone that isn’t in your core market. This can take some time but is worth doing!
Unlearn: Smaller fan numbers are better.
Edgerank algorithm is not your fan or friend
The classic Edgerank algorithm gave Facebook marketers a blueprint for best practice. It conditioned brands on when to post, what to do to elicit engagement and how to create ‘super fans’.
*source: Search Engine Rank.net
At present, Facebook marketers are still slaves to Edgerank. They’ve swapped out text only edge for video based edge and they desperately cling to comments to up their individual user affinity. Yes, this algorithm is still in use, but it only works to get you working within Facebook’s marketing strategy – not to specifically help your own digital strategy Brisbane plan for your business.
Unlearn: Edgerank is not at the core of your marketing strategy; it’s at the core of Facebook’s.
The Facebook marketing algorithms that create sales for you
This isn’t about the Facebook marketing algorithms that create reach or engagement for your page, it’s about the algorithms you should be taking advantage of to create sales for your business.
Trending articles are those ‘hot topics’ that appear in the sidebar of your personal news feed. These are articles proven to be interesting to people that share characteristics with you. If you know your fans well, you can manipulate your personal wall to display items your fans would be interested in reading. You then create content on your own website that gives a unique, customer driven explanation of the trending article that uses the same keywords as the original. Within the new article, you link directly to complimentary evergreen content on your website or to the start of one of your sales funnels. Then you share your new article on your Facebook page.
This works by using Facebook algorithms to better feed interested people into your established website sales funnels.
Learn: Feeding into your funnels should be your primary goal on Facebook.
Original video uploads (so not shared from YouTube or your website) currently get unprecedented reach and even autoplay when scrolled across by users. This offers amazing cut through for your videos. The issue is that uploading videos with no means to drive traffic to your website is mostly about helping Facebook to beat YouTube in the video wars. Be sure to consider this when you post a video on Facebook. Give viewers a strong, compelling call to action and link to go to your website after they’ve watched. Learn more about video content here.
Learn: Video content is full of benefits. Use it wisely.
Forget fans, get groupies
Facebook groups are where Facebook networking takes place. It’s long been the go-to place for like-minded brands to get together to organise cross promotions. Facebook has started introducing new features to groups, including cover photos and the ability to sell directly to the group. It has also re-introduced the question function exclusively for groups. Your ‘groupies’ will see your updates in the group. They’ll engage better. They’ll get actively involved in what you say and do. It’s not marketing, it’s networking. As the features roll out, Facebook marketers are growing concerned that it will soon cost a lot more to reach groupies and that advertising will become part of the group experience. For now though, inviting your fans into the inner-circle via a private group is the best way to build a network of buyers and buddies. With a core, engaged group, you can reserve your Facebook page as a kind of brochure for your business – driving sales not reach.
Learn: Being a human leader in a group will win you more sales than a brand on a page.
Is Facebook dead for marketing purposes?
*Sigh* No matter how many times you read that Facebook marketing is dead, the fact still stands that there’s an awful lot of people on Facebook and some of them are your customers, keen to buy from you. So it will never be dead. It will go on as a brilliant way to showcase what you do. Is your tried and true Facebook marketing strategy dead? Yes. Yes it is. Unlearn everything you knew and start afresh on Facebook.