Integrating social media - into your overall marketing plan has become vitally important, so much so that I devoted a series of four articles composed of nothing but links to outlets that can and will help your business succeed, if integrated correctly. Is this time consuming? Of course, but building any business for success requires going that extra step, not just to keep pace, but to excel among your competition. As a business owner myself, I quickly realized that you can’t sit back and expect prospects to beat a path to your door, even if you think you have the latest greatest product, service or solution on the market.
As I did some research – on how to best integrate social media, I again quickly realized the scope of what’s currently available can overwhelm even the most seasoned of marketing veterans. Fortunately, there are countless numbers of entrepreneurs and experts that specialize in making that connection, and some of them have graciously agreed to share their expertise with you on WDTalk.
Over the coming weeks, I will introduce – some of the most widely recognized experts in social media integration – each with their own stories of success and recommendations.
First up is Artyom Diogtev – Head of SocialMedia at ComboApp LLC. In addition to his article below on Facebook Fan Page Development, he’s consented to an interview at a later date – enjoy!!
Facebook Fan Page Development: best practice
March 22nd, 2011 12:27
Listen and Understand your audience
Although Facebook is extremely popular and is seen by many as something new and extraordinary, when it comes to creating a Fan Page it is always good to realize that essentially you need good old marketing techniques to make it right and avoid mistakes so many people make. From a technical point of view creating a fan page is fairly simple task, the hardest part is to create a page that will attract your target audience.
If you already have a fan page for your brand name / your product you must see what people are saying about you. In a sense you need to figure out what it is that you have in common with your target audience, and you have to be prepared to have a slightly broader scope than what your product or brand offers. You have to be an expert, and that means going at least a little further then your core competence/knowledge. In many cases your product / service information will be complimentary to more general topics related to your product or service. A simple example would be, let us say, if your app is about mixing music loops and beats, a more general topic will be music – discussing different instruments playing techniques and so forth.
Build Your Fan Base
Now you have your Fan Page ready and you do know their common interests. You are now looking into your Fans counter and thinking what you should do to give it a boost. Facebook has a users base which is larger than US population but how do you reach them initially… You need to promote your page. Here are the tools which are in your disposal:
- Like button – this is one of the most effective tools, which Facebook provides. You absolutely need to place the button code onto your app-dedicated web page and make sure it has a prominent spot to be noticeable by your website visitors.
- Tell Your Fans – this is a great way to discover your app’s current user presence on Facebook and encourage them to become your app fans, this tool will allow you to scan your email account (Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail and others) and with a single click invite people you’ve been communicating with to become your fan page fans
- Cross-promotion. One of the “Must Do” things is to promote your Facebook fan page on other Social Networking channels – YouTube, Twitter, Flickr. If you’ve developed a video demo for your app and put it on Youtube, you should place a direct link to your fan page right in the description and encourage people to become fans.
- Check Related Brands and Topics. You don’t create your app fan page in a vacuum, there are many fan pages with similar topics and you can always check out fan pages dedicated to iPhone & iPad apps, app review sites, etc. Once you found them, think of a polite but attractive way to present your app on those pages. You need to come up with a short, catchy post about your app, use your sense of humor to catch people’s attention, it will definitely help. Please understand that you do not force your information onto someone, it is their choice of picking it up.
Engage Your Fan Base
All your efforts to build your fan page audience will be in vain if you don’t know how to engage your app fan page fans. Use at least these tools to establish a conversation with your fans:
- Fan Page Wall – post bits of news about your app and about related topics to give your fans reason to visit your page over and over and use it as news source, keeping your audience in the know about your product.
- Photos – your app screenshots, the ones you have on the AppStore, is the most obvious thing to post right away but you can come up with more ideas for photos; post some specific app screenshot with hints, clues, tutorials. Whenever there is something interesting, amusing about your app comes up, capture it with a screenshot and think of the way to present it to your fans. Track carefully your app performance on the App Store and make sure you capture every single moment of your app’s glory on the store – each time it was featured in What’s Hot, New and Noteworthy, Top Paid, Top Free apps and post a screenshot on your fan page.
- Events – it’s a great tool to launch a giveaway and use some of your 50 promo codes to make your fans’ day and to give them a reason to leave a comment about your app on the App Store. Each giveaway should have its rules: deadline, what you’re asking people to do in return to a promo code, i.e. follow your app on Twitter, become your Facebook fan page fan and so forth, announce winners – give them their 15 minutes of glory or more .
- Videos – a good place to publish your app video demo and let people express their opinion right here on your fan page.
- Discussions – this is like setting up a forum on your site but even better cause all conversations between you and your fans will be displayed on your fans’ walls and potentially it may lead to a snow ball effect – more and more people will get involved in these conversations.
- Polls – if you want to measure your fans opinion, Polls is a great way of doing it, it doesn’t go by default for a new fan page but can be easily installed from Facebook App Directory – http://www.facebook.com/apps/directory.php
Switch from personal profile to a fan page – you can switch from using Facebook as your personal profile owner to a fan page and it will be easier and more convenient to administrate your page.
The most fundamental principal on which Facebook has built is a human communication, when you create your fan page you effectively begin a conversation with your app users and if you succeed in creating a good fan page you get not only new users, you get loyal fans for your app and also for you as a company. Building trust between you and your fans is the paramount task to achieve.
Keep your head up!
Facebook isn’t only the largest but one of the fastest growing and evolving ecosystems in the era of Web 2.0, always keep your eye on Facebook’s latest developments and adopt your fan page development strategy accordingly.