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With Facebook’s stringent rules regarding contests and competitions on its site, you need a lot more than free giveaways to build your Facebook community. You need to be interesting and relevant to your target market. Content is king, as the saying goes, and that has never been truer than when dealing with Facebook in a marketing context.
Here are a few helpful, common-sense ideas that will assist you in growing your business fan base.
1. Add Value
You need to think about yourself as an online brand ambassador aka content builder aka conversation shepherd… whatever the buzz words might be, the principle remains unchanged. Make your brand seem interesting and relevant, at all times. And if it’s numbers that you’re after, there is no better way to hike up your unique and repeat page views than value added content. But remember, status updates show up in your fans’ newsfeeds, so these updates need to make sense and be valuable in your fans’ eyes.
2. Listen more than you talk
Gary Vaynerchuk, a leading US social networker and vlogger has this to say: “Social networks are like cocktail parties, at the end of the day ‘content is king’ and if we can’t keep a relevant conversation going, people are going to leave the conversation….” Conversations are two-way streets, so remember to listen!
Every party needs a convo-starter, a joker or at least someone who’s brave enough to get the ball rolling, but if you only talk and never listen you’ll probably leave the party with fewer friends than you started with.
Facebook content rule #101 (in a South African context): Listen, Pause, Engage! Curiously, this principle applies equally on the dancefloor.
3. Ask questions
There are poll apps and form apps freely available on the internet, but if you don’t have the time or you’re simply too lazy to figure those out, then try asking fun, easy questions related to your product and appeal for feedback. We’re in the era of Generation ‘EX-press Yourself’, and you’ll be surprised just how many people want to have their say.
4. Be Inspiring
Whether it’s the seriousness of society or the treadmill of life that’s getting you down…a relevant inspirational quote that tugs at your heart strings, that makes your hair stand on end, or just makes you pause for a split-second can go a long way. And it certainly doesn’t hurt to try and make a difference in the world while you’re busy attracting attention.
5. Promote a competition
People love contests and competitions that make them think. Facebook’s strict requirements have made this harder than ever to get right, so you’ll have to think so far out of the box you may find you’re not even on Facebook anymore! No matter. One of your objectives should be to get people to visit your site, so if Facebook is bringing them there, then it’s all good.
Whether the prize is a free or discounted product or service, the point is you’re giving something back to the fans. Don’t worry about the mechanics or spending tons of cash on fancy apps, just keep it interesting. If the prize or offer is of interest to your particular fans and target market in general and they feel that you are genuinely giving back, they’ll move (click) when you move.