Some people haven’t forgiven Facebook for the changes it made last year to its news feed algorithm, alterations that ratcheted down the audience reach for some posts written on behalf of brand.
“You can spend a lot of time building up these audiences, but when things change constantly on the platform, it’s very challenging,” Dorothy Hui, Roc Nation’s Vice President of Digital Marketing, said of Facebook during a social media summit hosted by the Recording Academy prior to the Grammy Awards.
No doubt, Facebook’s tweaks, discussed in detail in the March 2, 2013 issue of Billboard, altered the playing field for bands and marketers who rely on the social network to get the word out. “It’s very risky to build your business on someone else’s platform,” said Paul Verna, senior analyst with eMarketer who advised companies to diversify their social efforts to as not to be dependent on any one platform. “You just never know when those platforms make changes that don’t serve your needs and you’re left dangling.”
There are other ways to adjust, said Geoffrey Colon, vice president of Social@Ogilvy, the digital marketing arm of Ogilvy & Mather. For those who are sticking to Facebook, Colon offers six ways to leverage the world’s largest social network.
1. Use Cool Visuals. “Pictures or graphics of any type are important because visuals capture more attention. You can be creative with your visuals. It can be anything from the photo that you take backstage that evening to the picture that you snapped in front of the page and built an interesting .GIF or meme around. These are seen and shared by more people than plain text updates.”
2. Share the Audio and Video Content. “Facebook doesn’t really have a music solution like a MySpace where you can upload audio and share it. But audio clips from third party apps such as SoundCloud can still travel far. It’s one thing for people to see you, it’s another thing for people to hear you. The same thing goes for video content.”
3. Leverage Your Community. “Find who your advocates are -- the people who are really interacting with your content -- and make them part of your future. Look at it as a relationship: Let’s build something bigger together! We’ve moved to this culture where anyone can help move the needle. If you can identify 150 people, that’s great. It can even be 10 people. If they’ve already interacted with you, nine times out of 10, they’ll be happy to help you.”
4. Ask More Than Tell. “Ask people what they honestly think about the things you are creating. Usually, on Facebook, people will be honest with you. Use this community as an incubation lab for what you will do next. Thegreat thing about Facebook is that there are communities gathered around particular interests who are happy to provide feedback. Listen more than speak.”
5. Go Analog. “Whenever you can, always try to cross over to the physical realm to drive real world results. It’s high value if you can create content that can shift into the physical domain. Example: If you are coming to our show, usethis code to meet the artist. It requires people to take action. This is valuable because it’s also track-able. And you can also win a fan for life this way. Don’t silo yourself into building content just for Facebook. Use Facebook as a springboard to drive business results in the real world.
6. Make “Share-able” Content. “Share-able content is personal, funny or somehow makes people feel good about themselves. People don’t share unless they feel it’s of personal value. People also share things that make them laugh and feel good inside. They also share because they want to feel like they’re part of something that is larger. Causes are good for this. It gives people a way to feel that they’ve made a difference by sharing.”