In the first article of this series, I talked about the importance of thinking about Social Networks in terms of strategy. If you haven’t read this article, I invite you to do it, as you’ll understand some of the topics discussed here. For this article I will deal with the world’s largest social network: Facebook.
It’s no coincidence that a large number of the world’s companies have placed their eyes on Facebook. According to this networks latest stats, they have more than 1 billion active users. They define an active user as someone who has logged into Facebook at least once during the last month, using any platform, such as a computer, cell phone, tablet or others.
As a company, we have to analyze how Facebook fits in our strategy. For example, we might be interested in creating a presence on this media, if we find that clients and potential clients are here. Also, we are willing to play with Facebook’s rules on openness and allow users to criticize us openly, among others.
If you decide to enter you company to Facebook, the first thing you have to do is open a Page. Please, don’t open a profile as the functions are limited and is prohibited under the sites TOS for companies to have profiles. After you complete this, assign an easy to remember username, such as MyCompany.
After this, you have to start creating content and looking for followers. When looking for followers you have to create a strategic plan of how you’re going to find them and how many are you looking for, say in a years time. This will require you to take action, for instance paying for ads and publicizing your presence in other ways.
When looking for users take caution. Do you want any type of users or quality users that will among others, buy your products? This is a big difference and I like to advice it, because I’ve seen many companies that focus on vanity metrics looking for any type of user, even if they are not their target users. To do this, they do contests and others, seeking every user, which many times won’t ever buy anything from this company (users sign because there’s the possibility of a price). The numbers look great, but in real life they don’t mean anything.
Facebook has many options we can take advantage as companies. To start they have the traditional wall o time line, which you can use to communicate with your followers, but they also have advanced options where you can even include your own made custom software. Analyze this options and using your budget as a metric, define the course your will take.
Remember that Facebook changes all the time and that you have to keep up with their changes. As part of the organizational strategy, I advice you to assign someone in charge of this changes and to keep you presence up to the latest changes.
My last advice is to take into account that many of the exercises you will do in Facebook are trial and error. Sometimes you will succeed and others you will fail, however the important aspect is that you learn from all of them. With time you’ll learn more about this platform and what are the best ways to interact with your followers.
Image taken from Flickr.com