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How to get Ad Value from Facebook

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Do businesses who join facebook and twitter notice that social comes before media?

Are businesses using these tools as a cheap alternative to mailing out flyers and buying television or Google ad space?  Are they unwittingly becoming spammers? We are going to talk about how to get Ad Value from Facebook.

Has anyone at Samsung Canada (facebook page) ever asked themselves: How do we get our fans engaged?  All I ever see are reposts of Galaxy and Tab pictures.

My wife runs a facebook-based promotion business and has a ~10,000 fan base.  Not a huge amount of fans, but the companies she works with are fascinated with her numbers: almost all of her fan base actively contributes to her page.  Her page is a social gathering place first, a business second. Could this be how to get Ad value from a Facebook Page?

In contrast I’ve watched many successful businesses spam the few fans they have saying things like “please tell your friends to like my business page,” over and over.  I support small local businesses and want them to be successful, but I’m not going to spam my social circle; especially when there is no benefit to them.

Will you un-fan (or block) a business that you feel is spamming boring ads to buy products or services?  If they were funny, would you keep them because of the entertainment value?

Why should your business care if fans are engaged?

Facebook and Twitter care.  Why?  They are profitable businesses that are free for users.  How do they make their money and how will they make their money in the future?  The simple answer is from business users.

Both of these companies limit the number of fans that each post reaches. Facebook now allows businesses to pay to reach more fans.  However, both of these companies also use computer algorithms to decide who will see a post in their feed, paid or not. One factor the algorithm uses is, “how often does each fan interact with the sender?”

If facebook is limiting the number of people who receive a status update, why would the engaged fans receive the most posts?  I’ll address this question, with a series of questions:

  • Is facebook making money because people keep logging on?
  • Are people logging on to facebook because they want to be entertained?
  • Who provides the content that entertains facebook users?
  • How does facebook know if their users are happy with the content in their feed?

An engaged fan is a fan who actively posts on your page or someone who likes and shares your posts.  An engaged fan is more likely to receive your status updates in their feed and in turn their fans are more likely to see that post.  This is the reason my wife’s reach can be double the number of fans on her page.  Also, those posts are reaching engaged fans that interact, tell their friends and ultimately, will buy; she is not reaching many fans who simply hit “mute” when they see an obvious ad.

You may be reaching 15% of your fans on each post.  But are all your posts reaching the same 15%?  Remember, facebook is selecting the fans who it thinks want to see your posts and avoiding the ones who it thinks do not want them!

Look at all my fans.  Where’s the Money!

Did you remember to plug them in?

It’s unfortunate when businesses invest so many resources into social media and benefit so little:  It takes time, energy, stress and money to run a successful social media page.  Those resources are taken from other aspects of running a business and/or one’s priceless personal life.

It takes exponentially more time and energy to keep fans engaged.  But as noted, there is little value in building a huge fan base if they are passive fans.

As I said, my wife has a business specializing in engaging with fans on behalf of other businesses.  Is it better to engage a social media promotion business or is it better to start from scratch by making the big social media investment on your own?  Its your business.  Whichever way you go, every business person who ventures into the world of social media should ask themselves one thing: How will we engage our fans?


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