The Dos and Don'ts of Facebook Marketing
Written by Flora Caputo
Facebook is a marketing Goliath. With nearly a billion active users, it controls almost 30 percent of the display advertising business, more than three times the share of Yahoo.
Before boarding the “Facebook train,” clarify your objectives as they relate to business. Facebook is good for audience engagement, but is that engagement truly benefitting your brand? With so many social media channels available, the most important thing to remember about social media is the “social” part.
Ask yourself, “Is my target using Facebook to search and engage with my product, service or industry?” If the answer is no, evaluate other social channels with which your target audience is engaged. If yes, then consider the following:
Make sure you have the dedicated resources to manage your page. Neglecting a Facebook page essentially translates to ignoring a friend. Relationships are two-sided. When you ask fans to like you, you are promising to provide them a reason to stay. And listening is just as important as talking.
Social media is an investment of time. According to AGBeat, when it comes to posting “… the ideal number is between 5–10 posts per week as a brand, and as a media company, this is typically 4–10x higher, as news is information people engage with all day long.”
Depending on your brand’s target and industry, some days and times are more crucial than others. In fact, some of the best times for activity are before or after business hours. Use an editorial calendar and management tool (HootSuite, Objective Marketer, etc.) to schedule content for peak days and times. As you flight out your content, remember it is not just about when to post, but what to post.
Share who you are. People seek a personal connection, even if they are interacting with a company. Find ways to put a face to your brand. Make updates warm and personal.
Deliver valuable content. There are two ways to approach content. One way is to take a fan engagement focus; the other is to use Facebook’s EdgeRank system.
For fan engagement, photos rank the highest, followed by status updates. Then in descending order are videos, music and links. Frequently ask for comments. Asking for responses helps you appear engaged and interested. You’re not just tossing content out—you want to know how it’s received.
Facebook’s EdgeRank system weighs content differently. This system selects photos/video as the most valuable, followed by links and status updates. Weight, affinity, and timing of content work together to enhance visibility.
One of the most valuable aspects of Facebook is the ability to mine your fan base for feedback. Use polls, promotions and questions to gain brand perception. Fans can give feedback on new products, ad campaigns or the competition.
Feedback can be both positive and negative—it’s part of the natural conversation. Our rule of thumb with negative posts is to always respond and to do so with “aplomb and grace.” If policing your page becomes too cumbersome, consider affordable, automated social management tools to help you control comments and manage the conversation.
Even More Engagement -
Social media is a two-way street. A successful strategy involves both inbound and outbound engagement. Research the pages your target is following. Find pages that align with your strategy. Are there other voices in the conversation? Consider online publications, groups, organizations or blogs that have pages your users find valuable. As you engage more with your target audience in places they frequent, you will gain visibility and attention.
Using promotions is a great way to grow your followers. But be careful to not give away freebies to people who are likely to buy from you. Your current fans are loyalists. Use giveaways or contests to reward new likes. Also, consider implementing a “fan gate” on a custom page to encourage likes. The more you engage the more influence you have. Ultimately, the heart of social media is not the number of fans, but the level on which you engage with them.
Return on Engagement -
Finally, you want to be able to analyze the results of your efforts... Facebook has great insight tools, and there are many third-party applications that can help analyze engagement, and recognize some immediate benefits. Listen to and communicate with your fans. Did you discover anything that you wouldn’t have known without the help of social media? Therein lays your return.
About the Author: Flora Caputo is VP, Executive Creative Director of Jacobs Agency. Her expertise: refining brands and developing creative strategies which break through and make connections in today’s complex communications landscape. The Chicago-based agency serves as a strategic marketing partner for companies in a variety of industries who need sharp insight, relevant creativity and the ability to reach targets on multiple levels. For additional information, email [email protected] or visit www.jacobsagency.com
Health Catalyst: An agile approach to healthcare data
Healthcare Catalyst is quite literally a healthcare providers’ catalyst for change when it comes to their measurable, data-informed improvement in analytics, software and services.
Founded in 2008 in Salt Lake City, Utah, Health Catalyst is dedicated to enabling health care organisations to build a healthcare-specific, open, flexible, and scalable data platform and fully integrated suite of analytics applications.
This enables health system partners, including Northwell Health in New York which serves a population of 11 million, to realise measurable value within months. “Our customers have recognised the potential to use data, to meaningfully improve their clinical, financial and operational business performance outcomes,” said Mike Doyle, Chief Customer Officer.
Formed by a group of healthcare veterans – with a quest to develop a data warehouse that could handle the complexities unique to healthcare data – they revolutionised the clinical process models and use of analytics and discovered the solution now known as Adaptive Data Architecture, which is agile, flexible and can be implemented in a matter of weeks compared to a matter of years.
Today, Health Catalyst helps clinicians in more than 250 hospitals that care for more than 100 million patients each year.
Health Catalyst offers a solution in three parts:
Data Operating System
Cloud-based DOS is a healthcare-specific, open, flexible, and scalable that provides customers a single environment to integrate and organise data.
Analytics applications build on top of the data platform and allow customers to make measurable clinical, financial and operational improvements.
World-class team of analytics and domain experts leverage technology to help customers shorten time-to-value and achieve sustainable, measurable improvements.
The fully integrated data platform and suite of analytics applications helped clients during the pandemic, in ways even Health Catalyst could never have imagined. Health Catalyst offered products and services to support customers’ agile response to the pandemic in four phases:
“By having the data operating system, our clients were able to take advantage of the integrated source of data to meet challenges that they were facing in their local geographies due to the pandemic in ways that we could never even have predicted,” said Doyle.
Doyle highlighted Health Catalyst’s Value Architecture group, which helps the company ensure that its technology and expertise are delivering measurable and meaningful value to our clients. “I think another key differentiator is our open platform that our clients are able to use to accelerate their own integration of data, but it is customisable, configurable in ways that makes it unique for them in ways other cookie cutter analytics just can’t match.
“We like to start every discussion by listening and understanding how we can help our customers avoid making mistakes and getting the most out of their investment in data.”
Speaking about their partnership with Northwell, Doyle said: “We're very grateful for this partnership and want to thank these visionary leaders who are able to envision a future using data that is light years beyond what we can think of today.”