If you’re a brand trying to market to customers on Facebook, how do you cut through all the noise and reach your audience? What can you do to engage people through the medium, beyond just having them fan your page? Atlanta-based social media strategist Brad Ruffkess tackled these questions this morning at the fifth Social Media Breakfast Tech Valley.
Brad shared some interesting data points about Facebook:
- The average user fans two pages a month on Facebook
- Facebook approximates 30 billion page views per month
- Gaming in social media is huge. Farmville has more users than Twitter
- Facebook’s self-service ads drive $200 million in revenue
He shared some interesting ways brands are using Facebook: Adidas’ Star Wars campaign that integrates Google Maps and a Facebook user’s location to “blow up” their city with a blast from the Death Star. Canada’s CTV broadcast network integrated the Olympic Torch Relay live video stream with Facebook Connect to allow viewers to post status updates about watching the relay live.
Brad left plenty of time for Q&A that covered everything from the benefits and differences of profiles vs. groups vs. pages to the intricacies of FBML and ways to measure effectiveness of Facebook engagement.
Some of the key takeaways:
- The value in Facebook is not necessarily the “share” but the “re-share” – what can you do to get your network to post content on your behalf? People like and trust information they see from their friends more than they do from brands.
- Don’t forget to take your Facebook engagement off of Facebook. It’s very easy to use widgets and simple lines of code to add Facebook functionality to your Web site. Add a fan page box, allow users to comment on content on your site (video, e.g.) via Facebook status updates, use Facebook Connect for people to comment.
- Quantity does not always (or sometimes ever) trump quality. A small number of passionate fans is more valuable than mountains of people who don’t really care.
- Paid media is critical to success on Facebook and one way to cut through the noise. Advertising on Facebook is extremely targeted and affordable. At the very least, you can use the self-service ad tool to look at data surrounding the particular group you want to target.
- There are rules of the road to Facebook and if you violate them, your page and community can be removed. Know the restrictions around things like contests and protocol for contacting fans and asking for their personal info. If you abuse the rules, Facebook can and will remove you – and then you’ve lost all the time and effort you’ve spent building up your page and following.
What’s the most creative marketing use of Facebook that you’ve seen?