Posts Tagged ‘Facebook’

Marketing on Facebook – is it worth it?

February 3, 2011

Facebook recently hit a ginormous milestone. They now have more than 600 million users. And if those users are anything like me they are now checking their Facebook account more frequently than they turn on their television.

So, Facebook must be a marketers nirvana. Right? You should build a page for your busines. Right? Well, it depends. If you’re going to start using a Facebook page to market your business, tread carefully. Here are three things to consider:

Attracting visitors to your page and keeping them coming back
Setting up a basic Facebook Page for your business is not that hard. My friend Sally set one up for her art business in no time at all. The trickier part is getting people to “like” your page and to come back and visit often. There are ways to do this. Just know that it is best done with a strategy, requires some time to keep current and a good imagination and business sense to create the right content.

Support – Good luck with that
Facebook offers all their support online. They have a “Help Center” easily accessible under the Account menu in the upper right corner of their UI. They call it help and if you have time and patience you might be able to find answers to your questions. But if you ever want a human being to help you, good luck. I clicked on a link for how to “Promote your Facebook page or Website”. The content is clearly written by a technologist and not a marketer. So while you might see what button to push, it’s not necessarily going to get you the results you desire.

While they don’t offer a way for a human to help you, they do make it easy to find a “Contact our Sales Team” link. How considerate. Thanks Facebook.

Privacy and Facebook terms – always changing
Facebook has earned a reputation as a company that abuses their users privacy. And the privacy rules are ever-changing (and ever making people cranky.) On top of that Facebook is often changing their terms of use and one thing is for sure – the changes they make are for their benefit. Not ours.

Facebook has rights to all of the content you put on your business Page, including posts, videos, photos, viral campaign elements, etc. I’m not saying they’re going to do this but they have the rights to use this content however and wherever they would like. Says so right in their terms. Just be careful and be mindful that what’s yours is theirs too.

So creating a Facebook page for your business – is it worth it? It could be, but if you build one don’t assume they will come. You need to build it and have commitment to stick with it. It’s also a good idea to find a buddy who has already forged their path on Facebook. Your buddy can help you since Facebook doesn’t offer that option.

B2B Social Media: Looking for People Like Us

March 10, 2009

Wow! Have I zoomed (okay, I admit sometimes I crawled) up the learning curve of social media in the past couple of months. This all started one day when a friend and I had a long conversation about why and how social networks matter in B2B marketing. Although both of us have been in B2B marketing for 20+ years, the benefits from and need for social media had not quite solidifed in our brains.

So I set off to get smarter, and have shared a lot of my new found knowledge with my friend. Now I share it with you.

Why should we care?

First, why does social media matter to B2B companies? A hard lesson to learn was that it’s not about marketing. What? Not about marketing? Isn’t everything about marketing in some way? Yes, but social media is really about dialogue, it’s about starting and participating in conversations about topics we care about. It’s about finding PLUs (people like us) who have interesting opinions, ideas and questions to share. It’s about being a good listener.

But there are certainly marketing implications. Marketing is all about being tuned into customers, and here are some reasons that B2B customers are drawn to social media:

  • Customers want to have easy and convenient ways to stay in contact with the companies who supply them with technology solutions.
  • Customers want to be part of a community with PLUs who have common interests – products, problems, job function, etc.
  • Customers want an easy way to learn from others, exchange ideas and information. They want to share ways they are overcoming technical challenges with their deployments.
  • Customers want an easy way to share their ideas, suggestions and critiques with peer customers and with their technology solution providers.

Are social networks and social media one and the same?

No, they are not. Social networks are Websites that enable computer users to create online networks and communicate with friends and colleagues (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace). Social media encompasses social networks as well as other online tools (blogs, podcasts, wikis, newsreaders, bookmarking services) that enable people to share content (posts, videos, photos, etc.)

The three social networks B2B companies should consider focusing their attention on first are LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. More on this in a later post. Until then, if you too are climbing the learning curve on social media for B2B companies here are some resources I found helpful: