PLA N OR
Director, Kim Pink
acebook strategy f that gets results
Plan for success or
plan to fail
Many businesses jump straight into Facebook. I understand why. You’ve heard about the fantastic results you can achieve and want to get started right away.
About the Author Written in Pink is a professional copywriting, public relations and design agency driven by Director and author of this e-manual, Kim Pink. An experienced writer and public relations consultant with experience across a diverse range of industries in both Australia and the United Kingdom, Kim has a passion that keeps her at the cutting edge of her field. She specialises in empowering every form of marketing by making every word count. By cultivating an indepth understanding of the language and emotions that motivate target audiences, Kim delivers text that speaks directly to the audience and inspires them to act. In the last year in particular Kim has focused on mastering the art of optimising social media for high impact marketing results. This manual is part of a series that aims to equip small business owners with the knowledge they need to take marketing to the next level. www.writteninpink.com.au
There are so many reasons why a strategy can ensure your success on Facebook. However, they all boil down to the fact that a Facebook strategy provides...
- have you ever really thought about what you are trying to achieve? A clearly defined goal gives your
every action a purpose. Developing a Facebook strategy is an excellent opportunity to objectively review your business, define your goals and outline how you’re going to achieve your vision.
It doesn’t need to be complicated. This e-manual gives you practical steps to building an easy to follow, high impact Facebook strategy.
top tip Developing a strategy isn’t necessarily a solitary exercise. Invite key team members into the action. You’ll be surprised by some of their ideas!
The components of a successful
A Facebook strategy is a plan of action. It outlines what you want to acheive and how you will achieve it. It is very similar to any type of marketing strategy.
Your Facebook strategy should include the following components: 1. Background A brief outline of your company, why you chose to employ Facebook in your marketing arsenal and your company’s existing experience with Facebook (what have you already tried and how successful was it). 2. Overall Strategic Goal A single minded marketing goal you want to achieve for your business. 3. SWOT Analysis A discussion of your company’s strengths and weaknesses and an analysis of external opportunities that would positively influence your company or external threats that could challenge it. 4. Key Competitive Advantage and Messages A showcase of the one reason your customers choose you above your competitors and the key messages you’ll focus on during this strategic campaign 5. Target Market A description of exactly who you want to communicate with. 6. Objectives Facebook specific goals you would like to achieve. 7. Tactics The actions you will take to achieve your objectives and strategic goal. 8. Timeline A outline of when you will execute each tactic so you always know what’s coming next.
Don’t have tim e for a strategy? TH INK AGAIN. This is the most valuable thing you can do to en sure Facebook succ ess.
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ho his Go on ed leave. T d ur exten y gives yo g ng e strat n everythi i o stand ed know t g. e n they n ings runni th keep
Proactive or reactive? Get on the fron t foot. Know what yo u’re doing and when you’re doing it .
What can you expect from this e-manual: • Simple advice and practical examples • Comprehensive list of tactics for you to choose from • Links to useful applications that will help 3
Background Setting the scene
Let me guess...you don’t think you need to bother putting together a background. After all, its your company, you already know everything you need right? Don’t ignore the importance of the background. It’s worth doing for two reasons: 1. It makes you sit back and take stock. You’ll look at your company more objectively than usual. You’ll think about where you’re at, how you got there and, in doing so, start to understand where you want to be. 2. You may not always be the one executing this plan. Think about it...what if you go on holiday or what if your business grows so much that you want to hire someone else to manage your social media presence? Taking the time to construct a background helps ensures your ‘helper’ has all the information they need to perform the role correctly.
How to start: To write your background simply answer the following questions. • When did your business begin and why did you decide to start your business? • How many employees did you have when the business first began and how many employees do you have now? • Discuss any major milestones i.e. significant challenges, growth spurts or achievements. Then move onto discussing your Facebook specific background. • When did you first establish a fan page on Facebook and why did you decide you needed to? • Why have you decided to develop this strategic plan i.e. have you been underwhelmed by the results so far or you are trying to launch a new campaign? Here is an example - please note this company is purely ficitious Catwalk Shoes was established in February 2009 in response to a gap in the local Brisbane market for premium quality designer shoes sold at affordable prices. When the business first began the team consisted of two partners. Catwalk Shoes now has a team of five, this includes founding partners, buyers and a website manager. Major milestones in the business include receiving a Small Business Award for Brisbane’s inner city suburbs and a partner being recognised as the runner up in the Brisbane Business Women’s Awards. Catwalk Shoes established a Facebook fan page in January 2011 in an effort to communicate with our customers more frequently and in a more cost effective way. Our Facebook presence has contributed to our growth. Our fan count has reached 345, however we still believe this resource could be used for greater impact. In November this year Catwalk Shoes will launch a VIP Member’s Club, with the aim of increasing repeat purchases and grow our customer based through referrals. We believe Facebook should be integral to launching and managing the Club.
ture When did you la back a nd rea st sit ll y look your b at us your ch iness? This is a far you nce. See how ’ve com e where you wa and nt to g o.
Overall Strategic Goal A single marketing goal A strategic goal is a wide, all-encompassing statement of what you hope to achieve. It isn’t Facebook specific but refers more so to what overall marketing goal you are working towards. More importantly, it connects what you are trying to achieve with a broad statement about how you will do it. This is often achieved by creating a theme or focus that all activities will fall under.
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Here is an example: To increase repeat sales by successfully launching a VIP Member’s Club. (Catwalk Shoes - from Background example)
There is a temptation to get too specific when writing your strategic goal. Don’t rush. We will create more specific goals during the Objectives section of this strategy.
Here are some other examples to help you start thinking about your own: To increase sales by showcasing the company’s fifth anniversary. To increase donations by showcasing upcoming medical research plans. To increase brand awareness by establishing a reputation as an industry leader. Try to sit back and look at what you are trying to achieve from a big picture perspective.
What is your big picture goal? • Increased sales • Increased brand awareness • Increased donations
SWOT Analysis Taking stock - inside and out
When was the last time you really sat down and took a good look at your company. When did you last take stock of your achievements and how far you’ve come? When did you last think about what is it that you do well - what makes your business work? Do you know what it is you need to work on to further develop your business? The SWOT Analysis is a discussion of your strengths, weaknesses and any external opportunities and threats that could impact your business.
Not sure where to start? Ask yourselves these questions: STRENGTHS What does your business do well? Perhaps there is a service or product that you offer that no one else does? WEAKNESSES What do you need to work on? Are there certain elements of service that your customers complain about? Are there elements of service or particular products that don’t do as well as others? Consider why this might be. OPPORTUNITIES Opportunities are external factors, not within your control, that could positively affect your business. THREATS Are there any external threats that could challenge the future success of your business. This includes looking at your competitors. Here is an example:
• Only firm to offer 24 hour contact number • Personalised customer service • Some of the most affordable prices in the market
• Complaints regarding complexity of online check out • Low repeat purchase numbers • Not the widest range of products available
• Potential to partner with a competitor to offer a wider range of products
• Competitors, specifically new players copying our formula • Changes to import legislation increasing the cost of business
Key Competitive Advantage
Now it’s time to identify the key messages that your Facebook campaign will focus on. Firstly, let’s look at what your key competitive advantage is. A key competitive advantage is just marketing-speak for the reason your customers choose you above the competition. It’s what is unique about your business.
Not sure how to identify what your competitive advantage is? Start by answering these questions: • What is the one reason customers choose you over the competition? • What do you offer that none of your competitors do? • What can you do that none of your competitors can do? Remember that you can only have one key competitive advantage. Don’t try to crunch all your stengths into one statement. Your strengths will become additional key messages that support your competitive advantage. To define your key competitive advantage think of the one reason you would give to potential customers to choose you over the competition. Here are some examples to help you: Catwalk Shoes - 24-hour access to premium women’s shoes up to 30% cheaper than leading competitors Bill Carnivore - Australia’s only bill analysis and savings service Diaper Express - diapers sold at 20% cheaper than competitors that are delivered to your door Better Business Solutions - most experienced local team in high impact development solutions
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You ca n one ke only have y com petitiv advan e ta up wit ge. Follow it h a list o messa ges ab f key out yo other ur streng ths.
Now, let’s move on to key messages. These are secondary to your competitive advantage. Key messages can include things like: • • • •
Quick turnaround Personalised service Wide variety of products or services Highly experienced team
What makes you different from the rest?
Target Market Who is your audience?
In this section of your Facebook Strategy we’ll look at who you are trying to speak to. It could be more than one type of audience. No doubt your existing Facebook fans will be one of your target markets. Or if on of your goals is to grow your fan base then your target market and how you communicate with them will be different. Most importantly, find out everything you can about your target market. In lieu of hiring a research company to do the work for you there are a few things you can do yourself. • Customer database - if you have an existing customer database then you may already have access to valuable information such as their sex, age, geographic location, occupation and interests. • Facebook insights - if you have an existing Facebook fan page check your Insights. Click ‘View Insights’ on the right hand menu of your page. Then select ‘Users’ from the left hand menu. This will help you with demographic information.
• Dig a little deeper by looking into what other pages your fans like. To do this go to your fan count which is listed on the left hand side below your profile image. Click ‘Like this’ under the number of fans you have. A list of your fans will appear. Try clicking a few of their names, depending on their privacy settings you might be able to get a look at what other pages they like. See what these pages do that you could possibly learn from. Your target market description should look something like this: PRIMARY TARGET MARKET: Women aged between 20 and 35 years who work or reside in inner city Brisbane. These women range from young professionals seeking high end work shoes and footwear for special events to full time mothers who don’t have time to go to shoe stores. SECONDARY TARGET MARKET: Women aged between 25 - 50 years who reside in small rural communities across Queensland. These women don’t have access to high end, brand name shoes where they live and as such purchase online.
Objectives Facebook specific goals
You already know the overall goal you’re striving towards. Now in this section of your strategy we’ll put together Facebook specific, shorter term goals. These goals are important because they are measurable, have specific timelines and will help ignite your ambition to keep getting results. Timelines and Evaluation Objective timelines will depend on how long your implementation period is. How long do you want this plan to last for? Generally speaking I find that 6 months is a good timeframe. It should be no longer than 12 months. While Facebook Insights makes it easy to evaluate your progress on a weekly or even daily basis, a great rule is to make the 3, 6 and 12 month marks time for a more indepth reflection on how you are progressing. The best advice I can give you when developing objectives is to be as specific as possible. Include percentages or figures you wish to achieve, when you want to achieve it by and if it isn’t immediately obvious, how you will evaluate if it has been achieved. Here are some example objectives to help you: Reach 200 fans within three months. Increase Post Feedback by 80% in three months. Increase Monthly Active Users (number of people [fans and non-fans] who have viewed or interacted with your fan page) by 400% in six months. Increase click-throughs to website sales page by 50% in six months. To be measured through website analytics.
The m ecific or you ca e specific n be w ith you object r iv it will b es, the easie r e progre to see your ss.
It’s important. It inspires you to keep going and gives you the opportunity to change your approach if required.
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Tactics The steps to success
Tactics are the actions you will take to achieve your objectives and overall goal. To help keep your focus list your tactics underneath your objectives. Be specific, thinking about how often you will execute each tactics. Understand that you may not want to draft three months worth of posts. It is more practical to discuss what sort of posts and practise and possibly pen with a few examples for yourself. Here are some examples:
Objective: Reach 200 fans within 3 months 1. Welcome page Research demonstrates that fans are much more likely to ‘like’ a fan page with an enticing welcome page than one that doesn’t have a welcome page. Your welcome page should be simple and high impact it should include: • Visual imagery • A ‘like, like’ offer: you expect people to like you, so show them that you like them by rewarding them for liking you with access to a free give-away or discount. For example, I offer access to free e-manuals. • You can also choose to give readers a hint of what they will find on your Facebook page, for example exclusive offers on new products, up to the minute industry news etc. To be executed in the first week. There are great applications out there that allow you to develop a Welcome Page. I used FanPage Engine which allows you to create multiple tabs or pages. However if you’re on a budget try an application like Static HTML. 2. External promotion of Facebook presence Register for a vanity url at www.facebook.com/ username. This will make it easier to publicise your fan page on non electronic formats such as brochures. Publicise your new fan page by any means available to you: • • • • •
Ezine Flyer Include in brochures Include on business cards Include on website
Be sure that any electronic formats such as the ezine include a working url to your fan page (welcome page). Ezine and website executed within two weeks. Remainder within one month. 10
Tactics The steps to success
Objective: Reach 200 fans within 3 months 3. Request referrals At the end of posts ask your fans to ‘Share’ it. For example: Did you know that the average woman has a total of 43 shoes. However, the Catwalk Shoes woman’s shoe collection is larger, more fabulous (and more affordable...shhhhh!). If you’re shoe collection is more Catwalk than average click ‘Share’. Executed on a maximum of three posts per week. 4. Facebook advertising campaign Invest in a cost efficient Facebook advertising campaign. Think critically about the key aspects of your advertisement i.e. the headline and image. Check my Facebook 101 eManual for detailed instructions regarding what sort of campaign to choose and how to get started. Begin campaign in second month, evaluating weekly. 5. Competition Develop a competition that is directly targeted at increasing your fan base. Publicise the competition on your welcome page, and also potentially through a Facebook advertising campaign. Don’t forget to showcase the competition on your fan page and ask fans to share it with their friends. Be sure to adhere to all Facebook competition guidelines (called Facebook Promotional Guidelines - click here for more information) i.e. contest sweepsteaks must be conducted through an application, you can require people to like your page to enter a promotion but cannot automatically enter people who post on your page into the promotion, display terms and conditions, have a method of randomly drawing winners etc. Also, be sure you’re adhering to any local laws that may exist in regards to running competitions. Most competitions targeted at acquiring new fans are based on randomly choosing the winner. For example: Like us today for your chance to win a free mountain bike. Like us today and be automatically placed in the draw to win $3,000 of free graphic design work. Like us today for the chance to win your pick of Prada’s upcoming hand bag collection. To be executed in the third month.
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Tactics The steps to success
Objective: Reach 200 fans within 3 months 6. Raise your voice outside Facebook Investigate opportunities to increase awareness of you and your brand outside of Facebook. Speaking opportunities that showcase you as a knowledgable leader in your field are incredibly effective. Here are some examples: • • • •
Speaker at training courses or webinars Being interviewed for industry related publications Writing as a guest blogger on industry blogs Exhibiting at a trade show
Be sure to make it as easy as possible for people to like your Facebook fan page. Ask people in the seminar to log onto Facebook via their smart phones and like you during your presentation. Or hand out small flyers with a Quick Response (QR) Tag on it that when scanned with a smart phone automatically likes your fan page. Investigate speaking/blogging opportunities - plan calendar of events by the second week of November.
Objectives: Increase Post Feedback by 80% in three months and Increase Monthly Active Users by 400% in six months. 1. Questions Ask questions that prompt feedback and responses. For example: What’s your Summer staple shoe - the wedge or the sandle? How much do you think Bill Carnivore has saved its clients so far this year: a) $80,000, b) 123,000 c) $800,000 To be executed a maximum of twice each week. 2. Ask to Like or Share Prompt your fans to like or share one of your posts. For example: Did you know that more than 500 million people engage with Facebook through external websites? CLICK LIKE if your website is linked with your Facebook page. Click like if you feel like ripping your bills in half. Only 2% of people that like your page will every return to engage with your posts. Click share if this scares you!
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To be executed a maximum of twice each week. 12
Tactics The steps to success
Objectives: Increase Post Feedback by 80% in three months and Increase Monthly Active Users by 400% in six months 3. Fill in the blank or add a caption Give readers other opportunities to engage by asking them to fill in the blank or add a caption to an image you’ve taken at one of your events. For example: Example for Catwalk Shoes: FILL IN THE BLANK: My favourite celebrity style icon is ______ Example for Recruitment Agency: FILL IN THE BLANK: When I was little and someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I said, “_____________” Execute once every two weeks.
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4. Did you know... Give your fans interesting facts and statistics that they will be likely to share with others. Begin each with ‘Did you know...” For example: Did you know that only 8% of Facebook fan pages are equipped with commerce facilties? Did you know that you can look new-season hot in premium brand shoes, but only pay half the price? Execute once every two weeks. 5. Themes Create regular themes that your fans can look forward to. For example: • Marketing Monday • Saturday Special • Free Stuff Friday Execute a maximum of two per week. 6. News and tips Keep your members up to date with the latest industry news. Ask your fans for their opinion on the news update. A great way to save time searching for industry specific news is to set up Google Alerts or subscribe to industry blogs or news forums. Or give fans a tip and ask them to like the tip if they plan to use it. For example: Click this link to find out how changes to franchise legislation can affect your business. Click here to access today’s free webinar on optimising your website for search engines. Get more wear out of your favourite dress! Change the entire look by swapping fabulous accessories. Execute up to four times a week.
Tactics The steps to success
Objectives: Increase Post Feedback by 80% in three months and Increase Monthly Active Users by 400% in six months 7. Poll of the Week Ask your fans to vote in a poll that runs for a week. Post voting updates every day. Then announce the answer at the end of the week. For example: • Vote for shoe of the week • You’re the designer - ask fans to choose between two shoe designs. The design that gets the most votes will go into fabrication. 8. Competition Run a competition aimed at engaging fans. It may also have the added benefit of attracting new fans. Some of the best engagement-targeted competitions I’ve seen are about launches. For example some authors ask their fans to take photos of themselves promoting the launch of their upcoming book. Fans upload photos of themselves holding signs with the book name and author in interesting places. Be creative. Here are some other examples: Tell us in 50 words or less why you love Catwalk Shoes to win a $300 voucher. Post a meal time photo to enter your child in the Baby Bibs Messiest Eater Competition and you could win a year’s worth of baby food. Execute in the fourth month.
Top Engagement Tip If one of your objectives is to increase engagement i.e. post feedback or monthly active users then make sure you pay attention to what your fans respond to. View Insights on your Facebook page, click the Interactions option and scroll down to the Post Interactions table. Take notice of what sort of posts get the highest feedback percentage.
Tactics The steps to success
Objective: Increase click-throughs to website sales page by 50% in six months. To be measured through website analytics. 1. Seasonal catalogues Showcase products/services seasonally. Ensure links to each specific product on the website sales page are activated on images and prices. This can be achieved through Photo Albums, however if you’d like to upload a hmtl active pdf you could look at using a service such as Scribed. 2. New product launch Create anticipation in the lead up to new products, giving users hints about their benefits. Then launch the product on a Facebook post, complete with links back to your sales page. 3. Product of the week Showcase a product that you’d like to push that week in images and posts with active links to your website sales page. 4. Sales and promotions Promote specials, sales and deals on Facebook with an active link to your website. FanPageEngine makes a great Facebook application that allows you to run deals from your Facebook page. Offer a product at a special discount price for the next hour or prompt people to buy by restricting the number of products sold i.e. ‘Only 50 available so get in quick’. Click here to find out more about this application. 5. Website reference in fan page information Include a reference not only to your website but also to the sales section of your website in the information section of your profile. This will also help your search engine optimisation efforts.
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Timeline Put actions in one place
A timeline is a great tool for keeping you on track. The timeline includes a list of tactics or tasks that need to be executed, when they should be executed and whose responsibility it is to do it. I find it useful to create a timeline in Excel Spreadsheet, print it and hang it infront of your desk. Here is an example of a timeline that includes all the example tactics discussed in this e-manual.
You’re ready! Let’s do this. That’s it! Now you’re ready to put together your own Facebook Strategy. Hiring a professional to develop a comprehensive Facebook Strategy could cost you thousands of dollars. However, if you set aside some time and work through this document I promise you’ll learn things about your business you didn’t know before and have a step-by-step plan to achieving your Facebook goals.
If you’re still having trouble creating your own Facebook Strategy post a question on the Written in Pink fan page, send me an email at [email protected]
or give me a call on (07) 3102 5644. 17