Tag Archives: Facebook

Be your customer’s #1 fan

24th October 2011

With Facebook’s recent changes emphasizing engagement vs fan count, it leaves me wondering, isn’t this the way it was designed  all along? For social media to be inherently social, 1:1 dialog and communication should absolutely be the cornerstone.

Here at Engauge, we are constantly looking for ways to propel our brands to become champions for their consumers, connect the dots and be, well, social. Moving beyond Facebook and into the larger picture of digital, we know Facebook is merely a network, a powerful network, but a piece of the puzzle none the less.

If communication is the cornerstone of building relationships with consumers, loyalty is the foundation. Not loyalty in the sense that we often see it today, but the world of loyalty our digitally connected consumers are coming to expect.

Merriam-Webster defines loyal as “a strong feeling of support of allegiance.” When I use a coupon or offer card  to make a purchase vs. visiting a competitor retailer, am I being loyal?  Yes, I am loyal to that offer. No, I am not always loyal to the retailer. So how can we as marketers build loyalty to a brand in a world of coupon craziness? The answer is in the balance of experience and advocacy.

In order for a consumer to become loyal to your brand, they must first experience it. We all know the saying about first impressions, make that impression with something they can’t turn down: an offer. Welcome emails, Facebook Like-gated tabs and SMS welcome messages are all great mediums to welcome a consumer into your brand.

However, this is where many marketers end the conversation, when it’s just beginning. In order to drive advocacy and allegiance the consumer must build a relationship with a brand. This is where in today’s digital landscape we are perfectly primed to connect the dots.

What is the personal connection you want a consumer to have with your brand? What utility are you going to provide to them that the competitor won’t? What is exclusive to this channel that they can’t find anywhere else? This may be great customer service, a mobile app to scan items and specials in-store, intriguing information on Facebook and Twitter that sustain a conversation or behind the scenes photos on Instagram or Tumblr. Don’t let the conversation stop in one place.

The key: it must be a combination. If you want to have a relationship with your consumers, don’t end it when you open the door. Give them something to talk about, prime them to tell their friends about you, and when they do, be listening and ready to reward them for that behavior. Be your customer’s number one fan and you just might find they will become your’s too, and in the process, indispensably loyal to your brand.

Is AmEx changing user behavior with social partnerships?

21st July 2011

Social integration took on a whole new meaning last week as American Express announced a partnership with Facebook allowing card holders to link their accounts to their cards in what they are calling “Link, Like, Love.” The program, similar to that of the Foursquare partnership announced earlier this year, allows card holders to receive automatic rewards on their card targeted by their likes and interests. The promotion is just short of amazing.

However, as I think more about the general AmEx card holder vs the average Facebook user, I wonder if AmEx is approaching something much larger here.

The average Facebook user is now nearly 40 years old, but I would imagine that that for heavy or advanced Facebook users that demographic skews much closer to the millennial generation…a generation buried in credit card options and credit card debt. Now, not speaking statistically whatsoever, I would say that the perception of AmEx, with it’s annual fees and generally high credit limits, skews towards a more financially established user overall.

More interesting than the partnerships AmEx has created are that AmEx is now A. leading a younger generation with no shortage of options to consider a card option typically out of their demographic simply because it now fits in with everything they surround themselves with – a robust social graph, tailored deals and instant gratification.

B. AmEx is now also targeting their key demographic by tapping into their exploration in social tools and recommendations. As these users begin to explore how to connect social to everything they do, this may be a perfect first step with a brand they trust financially. I can’t imagine the baby boomer generation is going to stop signing up for Facebook anytime soon.

As brands become more intertwined into every facet of our daily lives, I would bet that partnerships such as this start to carve new paths for consumer decision making on both sides of the fence. I for one know I’m a little more interested in what AmEx has to say these days and look forward to brands continuing to push the boundaries in social for user of every age.

Facebook Adds Local Recommendations

18th July 2011

Facebook has launched a local recommendation piece as a part of the new parent/child features focusing on local Facebook Place pages.

This feature allows users to easily recommend a local business to their friends, by typing a quick recommendation in the upper right hand corner of the page. Similar to a status update, this action can be targeted to a subset of a user’s friends. The post generates a powerful Newsfeed story, highligting the page in addition to the user’s review. As local businesses look for more ways to engage fans in-store as well as on-line, distinctions like this will help to add value for both fans and the pages seeking to reach them. These simple changes will begin to bridge the gap that currently exists between a user, a brand and the connection he/she establishes with a local business.

Have you taken advantage of Facebook’s changes for the parent/child connection yet? What benefits do you feel this brings to those branded pages you manage in addition?