MxM Open Classroom | Digital Marketing by Bhuvi Gupta | 10 Commandments of leveraging Facebook effectively

07 May,2020

Bhuvi GuptaBy Bhuvi Gupta

 

Facebook, while not the first social media network, was the first social media network, which the world holistically adopted, because it evolved to keep itself relevant.

 

Even today, with a plethora of new social media networks, Facebook with a subscriber base of over 2 billion users globally remains relevant and for marketers crucial to reach customers. In India, Facebook has, 300 million users, which means that which means that 60 percent of its online population (500 million) have a Facebook account. It remains the social media network with the highest subscriber base in India and the best platform for advertising (on social media networks) by far. Therefore, marketers cannot  and should not ignore Facebook.

 

Most marketers would have used definitely Facebook both as a platform for content marketing  & for digital advertising.  Both have evolved considerably, due in part to the platform’s declining organic reach & changes in the product, over the last decade. Here are 10 Commandments for leveraging Facebook effectively in 2020 –

 

Commandment 1 –Optimize your Profile

 

The first commandment is necessary, as an optimized profile is the base for implementing strategy. Facebook allows brands considerable more space to detail information about their business, their objectives, mission, locations etc. These details often get missed on other social media networks, which focus on keeping profile bios short and sweet. Best practices are –

Dharma Productions has  a business profile customized to its business of a film production house

• Have an eye-catching profile picture & cover image or video, optimized for the correct sizes.

• Create a Facebook Business page which helps  –

:: Access to Facebook Audience Insights

:: Running ads

:: Allows page customization to suit business objectives i.e. you can shift or delete sections basis on what is important

:: Allows you to create a shop front on the page

• Fill out your profile with brand description, locations, visiting hours as applicable

• Use ‘Call to Action Buttons’ aligned to business objectives.  This button shows on your page, right below the cover photo and is a trigger for A profile visitor to take action – ranging from browsing products, subscribing to updates, getting a discount code etc.

• Pinned post– FB allows pages to pin 1 post to their profile. This post should be used to highlight any update, or the latest brand campaign.

• Apply for page verification – on the ‘Settings’ tab

• Link all other social media profiles to the page to benefit from cross promotion. This is especially beneficial for Instagram, and you can simultaneously post on Facebook & Instagram stories

• Create a Vanity URL – Change the random URL assigned to you when you create a page to a URL, which is ideally your brand name and SEO friendly

 

Commandment 2 – Create a FB Content & Community strategy

Over the years Facebook has made considerable changes to its newsfeed algorithm. Today, Facebook prioritizes content from pages that enjoy high viewership, and quality engagement. Hence, focus on quality content, which inspires reaction.

 

Organic reach on Facebook has reduced considerably, with posts reaching less than 5% of your page’s audience, earmarking budgets for boosting posts is necessary. Posts can also be geographically & demographically targeted so as to ensure effective reach.

 

CONTENT

• Use Facebook Page insights to understand the content has stickiness and the demographics of the followers who are returning to consume more content, so that you can create better and more engaging content

• Diversify the content mix – images, videos, GIFs, polls, and User-Generated Content (UGC). FB prioritizes video over photos, and photos over status updates, hence that should be accounted for in the content mix

• Adopt the 70-20-10 approaches: Post original material 70 percent of the time. Share existing content that’s relevant to your audience’s interests 20 percent of the time and -promotional content the remaining 10 percent of the time.

 

COMMUNITY

• Be responsive to people commenting on posts to increase engagement.

• Don’t use ‘ Engagement bait’ as Facebook doesn’t count such posts as genuine engagement.  These are those posts that encourage responding with a single word or an emoji, or ask people to tag friends in the comments only to drive up engagement

• Switch on profanity filters in Page Settings so that defamatory comments don’t show

• Because of the sheer numbers of users and business pages on Facebook organic reach is low. Hence, it is important for Pages to ask followers to turn on post notifications so that they know every time the page posts. Before this request, pages should ensure that their page is active, with high quality and engaging posts so that followers are motivated to turn on post notifications.

 

Commandment 3 – Leveraging Facebook Page Insights

 

A snapshot of FB page insights

 

Facebook offers very detailed page insights, as compared to other social media networks. Understanding these insights can help unlock the potential that Facebook with its large audience base has. Marketers should frequently use Page insights to help answer the following questions, and accordingly alter their page strategies-

• What content performs best in terms of reach and engagement ?

• What are the demographics of the people who interact with your page, and what time are they most active ?

• What are the numbers of people interacting with your page and content and how is it relative to your competition?

• What actions are people taking through your page; do they click the call to action button?

 

Commandment 4– Granular targeting with Facebook Advertising

 

Enough and more has been spoken about how advanced Facebook ad targeting is and it’s easy to measure and optimize campaigns to get the best possible ROI. Best practices are –

• Use Custom Audiences (existing customers or followers) to retarget them with new products or updates

• Use Lookalike Audiences to discover customers similar to people who have interacted or purchased products

• A/B test ads to invest funds in better performing ads

• Track ads performance regularly – Ads peak and then performance starts dropping, when the audience being targeted has been exhausted. Tracking ad performance can help marketers to pinpoint when this drop happens and modify the campaign accordingly

• Different industries have different ad metrics and there is no average CPM or CPV, or CPA

• Use Facebook audience insights – Facebook Audience Insights, (accessible from the Ads Manager) is a tool designed to help marketers gain better insights about their community, their custom audience (customers) and potential audiences, by studying aggregate information about geography, demographics, purchase behavior and more.

 

Commandment 5 – Leverage Facebook Audience Network while Advertising

An underused part of Facebook Advertising is the Facebook Advertising Network, (the Facebook equivalent of the Google Display Network). The FAN is a collection of websites and apps that allows advertisers to extend their Facebook and Instagram campaigns across their advertising real estate.

 

The FAN is easy to use as using it uses the same targeting available for Facebook ads, including Custom Audiences, core audiences and lookalike audiences and features the same measurement tools marketers’ use for their Facebook ads. It takes only one additional click while creating ads.

 

Basis a Facebook study, conversion rates were eight times higher amongst people who saw ads across Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network than people who only saw the ads on Facebook.

 

Commandment 6 – Leverage Facebook Pixel to optimize ROI

 

Using the Facebook Pixel is a piece of code used on your website (where customer conversions take place) to optimize ad delivery to an audience is more likely to take an action like a purchase checkout for an ecommerce website, a subscribe for a media website, etc.

The Pixel allows you to track visitor activity on your website. This way,  brands can track when a customer took an action and after seeing which Facebook ad. Tracked conversions appear in the Facebook Ads Manager and in the Facebook Analytics dashboard, where they can be used to measure the ad effectiveness of your ads, dynamic ads campaigns, retargeting, and to analyze that effectiveness of your website’s conversion funnels. This is called conversion optimization.

 

Commandment 7 – Don’t forget the Power of Facebook Groups

In the macrocosm of Facebook, Facebook Groups are a relatively untapped opportunity for brands to create new and leverage existing communities.

 

Film Companion, a media company focused on reviewing content has their own FB group

Groups, which  are a different asset to a FB page, are communities built around a certain common interest, and often geography. The format is that of a public forum, where members of the community are allowed to communicate with other members publically. The communication is managed by one or multiple Admins, who ensure that the group is communicating in line with rules defined by the Group owner.  Groups can be closed i.e. requiring approval to join or open.

There are 2 ways to leverage FB Groups –

1. Create a FB Group – Time consuming but a high quality community of brand loyalists will  be built. As groups offer communication even between followers, it will mean that a robust multi-way communication channel will get formed.  While this will require regular group management and even policing, this community is a high quality focus group that can be used in multiple ways

2. Join Groups – relevant to your brand can help give access to a ready community that can then boost your page following, and even become customers. Ways of creating awareness in groups can be multiple, but must be done with prior Group Admin approval, as not all groups will be willing to let brands leverage them, but some may –

• Content – sharing posts that utilize your brand rather than only promote it

• Hosting exclusive competitions for group members which require using your products or services

• Using the group’s real estate for advertising – this means the cover image, pinned post etc.

 

Commandment 8 – Go Live on Facebook

Facebook Live is a feature of that uses the camera on a computer or mobile device to broadcast real-time video to Facebook. Lives have become ubiquitous across social media. Since the launch of live in 2016, as per statistics shared by Facebook, more than two billion people have watched a Facebook Live video. Lives are a helpful tool and help brands to –

• Provide access – Live streams of public events like press conferences and product launches

• Provide engagement to the brand – The brand can respond to viewers in real time

• Humanize the brand – showcase the behind-the-scenes functioning of the brand, your product, ad shoots, or the people behind your brand.

Some best practices of using them –

• Choose live topics on the basis of what your community wants more information on

• Promote the date of you live for a few days, so that your community is aware of the Live taking place

• Take questions and respond to comments from the viewers

• Cross promote your Live on other social media

• Ensure you post your Live as a video after the stream has ended, with an relevant description & video title

• Ensure you data connection is strong, so that the video doesn’t lag or drop during the Live

• Ensure you have a visible branding during the Live

 

Commandment 9 – Consider using Chatbots on FB Messenger

The chatbot launched by MyGovIndia to resolve queries on Corona virus

 

Chatbots on Facebook messenger are a great tool to complement a Facebook page. Messaging enables businesses to pursue two-way conversations, which are personalized (users are greeted with their first name), customized (according to their purchase history or search history), simplified (only information relevant to the user’s query is given as opposed to a FAQ or a one-way post), responsive, (comments on Facebook posts can be responded to) fast, and documented.

 

Hence, FB Messenger as a more intimate way to communicate with users for retargeting, customer sales support & communication, should be leveraged.

 

As per a Facebook study, 79% of people in India say that being able to message a business helps them feel more confident about the brand

While there are many companies which make Chatbots, popular companies include Mobile Monkey, ChatFuel, & ManyChat.

 

Commandment 10 – Use360 Degree Photos & Videos

The film Bhoot used 3D posters as a part of its marketing communicatons

 

Facebook’s USP over other social media networks is that allows users to take, upload and view 360-degree photos. While Facebook supports 360-degree videos, they need to be shot using special cameras.

 

3D photos can help create the wow factor, which can help brands to break the clutter – something which on Facebook is necessary.

 

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Facebook offers short and comprehensive courses and guides on how to use all their features. I recommend going through Facebook Blueprint, which is an e-learning platform that offers free, self-paced courses on Facebook and Instagram advertising for detailed guidance.

 

Pictures taken from public feeds of users on  Facebook, Facebook newsroom & blog, hootsuite.com & pixabay.com

 

Bhuvi Gupta is a marketer with 10 years of work experience, of which the last six have been in the media and entertainment industry. She has been a part of many launch marketing campaigns with experiences at the Times of India group, Republic TV and the latest in marketing a Bollywood film.

 

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