From a Harvard dorm to 1.59 billion monthly active users, Facebook’s journey has been nothing short of a fairy tale. Marketers have realized the potential of Facebook to promote their brands and ever since they launched the ad service in 2007; their revenue has continued to soar. In a recent survey conducted by Social Media Examiner, 84% of marketers have mentioned that they use Facebook ads (75% in case of B2B marketers).
Having said that only 22% of B2B marketers feel that Facebook is effective in generating leads.
Source: Copyright 2015 Crowd Research Partners. Paper titled – Lead Generation Trend Report
This proves that either Facebook may not be a useful platform to generate leads or marketers are not utilizing it effectively. GM dropping Facebook marketing makes a case against Facebook. In another blog, Alex Turnball the CEO of Groove talks about the reasons why they dropped Facebook entirely. Having said that, several businesses have found Facebook to be an effective tool too. I am not going to go into another post on effective Facebook strategies. There is a ton of valuable info out there that can help you. Rather this post is focused towards evaluating the challenges one faces while marketing in Facebook. Facebook gives you a lot of props to market on its platform. Let’s look at the challenges in each one of them.
Facebook Marketing Challenge #1: Fan Pages
A company or a brand can make a Facebook page. Most of the Facebook pages publish content of their own brand. It is mostly used as a podium to shout out news related to the brand. The challenge here is that Facebook pages usually have fewer interactions. The content has to be positioned in a way that builds engagement. Posts in Facebook pages can be packaged into the following categories.
A social media manager has to repurpose content into these forms to keep engaging with their followers. A lot of time needs to be invested in seeing which type of content gets more engagement. Also, the time of posting content is important so that users don’t miss it in their newsfeeds. But more often than not, this responsibility is given to marketers who are already busy churning out content. Companies or brands who are serious about their social media strategy need to hire someone exclusively for social media.
Facebook Marketing Challenge #2: Groups
The idea behind Facebook groups is to bring like-minded people together. Facebook groups is an awesome way to connect with experts or users of a common domain. Facebook groups can be closed or open groups. Closed groups offer more value as you make the group exclusive and ensure that not anyone can join.
Discussions thrive in Facebook groups, but the challenge here is to keep the group active. Members can contribute in the following ways to a group.
Asking the group members to share their experiences with the group or to participate in a poll goes a long way in building relationships. It is possible to moderate every post in the group before posting. The flipside to this is that members might have to wait for their post to be approved. But this is effective to block out spammers. One needs to spend a considerable amount of time tending to and cross promoting their groups which many users fail to do.
Facebook Marketing Challenge #3: Video content
Videos reach further than any other content. In one such research, it was observed that video’s organic reach was 8.7% compared to 5.3% of a link post. It hence becomes important for a brand to churn out videos and keep the fans engaged in Facebook.
Making videos is again a big challenge for small and medium businesses as they would have to hire a video team, which is expensive. Instead, most of the videos can be produced using a few tools like Camtasia, Animoto, and Powtoon and thus save a lot of money. You would have to go to a professional video team only when you need a branding video.
Facebook Marketing Challenge #4: Visual images
Research has found that colored visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%. It is also a well-known fact that people engage and share content which has humor in it.
Images can be about the product/brand or an infographic. Designing images is not a marketers cup of tea. The challenge here is, to keep producing visual content, a marketer will have to use a few tools especially if they are bootstrapped. Tools like Canva and Piktochart come in handy to design images and infographics.
Facebook Marketing Challenge #5: Ads
Organic Facebook posts reach only about 10 to 15% of your fan base. To reach the remaining 85 to 90% audience, sponsoring posts is important. Facebook ads can be run to drive a variety of objectives.
As you can see, one can target a lot of different goals through Facebook ads. The challenge here is to understand what works for the kind of content you are trying to promote. If you are trying to increase signups for your product, then these targeted ads, which are called ‘dark posts,’ do not appear on your timeline. If the objective is to get people to engage with your content, then you can boost posts from your timeline itself. Objectives need to be defined clearly to leverage Facebook ads effectively.
What are the challenges that you have faced while marketing in Facebook? How were you able to mitigate them? Let us know in the comments section below, tweet to https://twitter.com/smhackapp or write on our Facebook wall https://www.facebook.com/smhackapp/