Adopt a new perspective to get past Facebook’s marketing challenges
Looking at what content works best, what time to publish updates, and how to use sponsored stories are consistent themes being discussed among nonprofit marketers.
Yet these issues are just symptoms of bigger challenges that we all need to better understand.
Following are five reasons why Facebook marketing is presenting new and/or unusual challenges:
You’re still thinking push
1You’d think that social media would have changed the mass-production push mentality that’s been so pervasive since the Industrial Revolution. But it hasn’t.
Facebook, and most social media for that matter, is still viewed as a free email list to be “targeted” and marketed to.
To amp things up on Facebook, you have to flip this mindset 180 degrees and instead think about creating a space for your supporters to share what matters to them.
- What’s their agenda?
- What are they already putting out there that’s in sync with your cause?
- How can you capture that on your Facebook Page?
You need to understand people
2Google tells you what people are searching for in the form of words typed into a little search box. It’s literally spelled out for you. Not so with Facebook.
What makes Facebook users share, comment and like is still very much a mystery.
You’re competing with their friends
3Think about the last time you opened up Facebook on your laptop or mobile device. Was it to find out what your favorite brands were sharing? Exactly.
It’s the same thing with your supporters. Every time you publish an update in their news feed, you’re competing with birth announcements, political rants, vacation pictures and recommended bands.
Remember that you’ll never trump someone’s friends, but the more you can come across with a friend-like voice, the better you’ll do.
You’re competing for attention
4Facebook users are constantly distracted. They might have the best intentions to view an update they were notified about by email, but as soon as they open up Facebook, they see more notifications in the menu and in their friends lists. They see a dog dressed up as little red riding hood. They see other ads that are also competing for their attention.
Capturing — and recapturing — people’s attention will always be a challenge on Facebook.
You’re dealing with mobile devices
5Every other challenge mentioned here happens within an even smaller space on mobile devices. Did you know that each image you post on your Facebook Page takes up the entire screen on an iPhone?
Yes, there are fewer elements to distract users, but there’s also less space you’re competing for.
Curiosity and creativity are the keys
Most of the challenges here are not insurmountable, but sometimes they feel that way. The best way forward is to have a solid understanding of how to best use Facebook for your organization.
What challenges have you seen through marketing on Facebook?
John Haydon delivers social web strategy solutions for “the quick, the smart, and the slightly manic.” Curious? Then connect up: Contact John by email, see his profile page, visit the John Haydon blog, follow him on Twitter and Google Plus or leave a comment.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported.