If you think a ‘like to enter’ competition on your company’s Facebook page is a cunning way to grow your follower numbers, you’re probably right in the short term. But if you treat it as a loyalty database, be prepared for some repercussions.
There seems to be a proliferation of the little thumbs up competitions rolling through and some small businesses are excited that they are finally ‘doing social media.’
The promotional mechanic is not new. It’s the modern version of putting your business card in a bowl for a $50 bar tab draw and, as customers, we all know how this goes down. The company will then add your details to their database and send you offers via email or text.
If companies continue to treat Facebook as a loyalty database they will end up with the same problems that direct marketers have fought with since the old paper catalogue days.
Getting the balance right between engagement and spam requires people driving the accounts to understand their community and have a sense for what they will tolerate (in commercial messaging) versus fun and frivolity. The general rule I was told by a Facebook rep was ‘one-to-four’: one sales message to four chatty conversational messages.
You need to keep an eye on the stats running in the background of your Facebook Pages including exit and hide rates; not just your engagement rates (likes and comments). Watch your campaign flight planning and make sure you aren’t fatiguing the community with stuff that is too ‘sales-y’ and not interesting browsing for your customers. The main reason people go on Facebook is to look at photos so it’s also a good idea to take some snaps and let your customers see the humans behind your business.
In the tips for new players category, read the Facebook competition terms of service and stick to them. Big brother is watching you and they will kindly send you a warning email that you must comply with or your Page will be disabled. ‘Comment to enter’, ‘upload to enter’ and ‘like to enter’ have to be setup a certain way to meet Facebook legal requirements and it pays to educate yourself on what’s in and what’s out.
There are lots of good examples out there of companies that do well. Are you on Facebook for personal or business and what do you use it for? Feel free to add your business page in the comments so people can connect with you. You can also have a chat in Xero Community.