6 Ways Facebook Builds Brands
The consumer landscape has gone digital, and the name of the game is adapt or die. Consumers are increasingly learning about, purchasing from, and interacting with brands via social media. This new landscape demands new tactics be taken for growing your brand, and Facebook is the perfect place to do just that. There are six major steps to take when planning on building your brand on social media, let’s take a close look at each.
First and foremost, it is increasingly important that brands identify aspects of their product or service that can be communicated easily over social media. A recent study by Forrester Consultants and Facebook suggests that one should “Apply a social lens to your brand identiy by asking “What about my brand is inherently social?” Why do people engage with it and why do people want to tlk about it or share it with their friends in the real world?”. Often, attributes such as these are not obvious, but a good example comes with the deoderant brand, Secret. They found it got results by connecting with their key demographic, women, on an inspirational level. Once it determined this, they got behind a Facebook-based anti-bully campaign, “Mean Stinks”. This generated not only a positive relationship with and view of the brand amongst their key demographic, but it incited sharing and opened them up to a much wider audience.
Building connections on a social media platform such as Facebook is hugely important for a brand. In order to ensure that this happens, you should create a brand hub, with your Facebook presence being that hub. For instance, Ford used Facebook as the main source for information surrounding the launch of the 2011 Ford Explorer. All communications drove fans to the Ford Facebook Page, which was the main online venue for the reveal.
The third step to be truly effective with building your brand on Facebook is to foster engagement. Getting consumers to join the conversation on your brand is usually easier than you might think. For example, Burt’s Bees lip balm launched its new product with a Facebok App that allowed users to send a photo of one of its 6 varieties in the line along with a message stating why one of their friends is a “natural beauty”. This provides a means for voluntary brand promotion and also fosters a sense of brand loyalty to the umbrella cause of promoting natural beauty.
This is one of the most effective steps in building your brand image. The idea here is to allow social media fans to feel like insiders. For example, Bud Light’s “Up For Whatever” campaign which is currently running enlists fans in a scenario where, if taken, their wildest dream or fantasy will be laid out in front of them. The campaign runs along with the slogan’s idea of being adaptive to the “party” environment and being up for whatever. Fans from their social media pages will be surprised on their doorstep, asked if they are “Up for Whatever”, and then taken on an extreme fan getaway to their favorite sports game, have a party thrown at their house, etc. The brand also hosts large music concerts and festivals for fans of their page and asks them to post status updates from the event, live-tweet, take pictures at designated photo stations to be uploaded directly to their account, all while spreading brand awareness.
Much in the same way that social media experiences aren’t divided, why should you pigeonhole your brand? You need to take a full 360 degree approach to your social marketing, incorporating social media with other vital aspects of your product or service. A great example of this is American Express’ “Link, Like, Love” campaign which syncs the Facebook account of a cardholder with their loyalty program. The result of this would be if someone ‘likes’ Hershey’s, they may see a deal or coupon for Hersheys in their Facebook dashboard.
Last but by no means least is to rejuvenate your account and keep it relevant to your fans. To accomplish this you have to have the mindset similar to that of a publisher: if something big happens in the news or with your product, and you have a relevant way to mention it, you definitely should. For example, AT&T has a team dedicated to keeping an eye on its Facebook Page, continuously monitoring their fans for insights about its services.
Although Facebook should not be considered a be-all end-all to your marketing scheme, it should definitely be a major part of your larger social-marketing scheme. Moreover, having an experienced social marketing team behind your brand is an invaluable asset in terms of design, timely posting, page rejuvenation, customer service and engagement, and growing the reach of your brand to a wider audience.Tags: Branding, Brands, Facebook, SEO