What’s the reach and frequency, Kenneth?
Reach + Frequency (of the right content in front of the right audience) = metrics by which traditional media have long been judged. The same standards apply to social media, or at least they should.
I’ll take Facebook fan pages as an example. A couple years ago, brands were really struggling with understanding this medium and developing the right content for it. Today, FB fan pages seem to have much richer content. Nice job, corporate America. The problems I’m seeing now generally fall into two categories: A) FB whale brands (brands with more than 1 mil fans) who lack frequency – they rarely post and respond to their fans even less – and, B) FB minnow brands (under 100k fans) who offer rich content and engagement to the little pool of fans they can’t seem to grow.
Which would I rather be? A FB whale brand, of course – because that’s an easy fix. You’ve got an ocean of fans who deserve attention, allocate the resources to give it to them. Much more common are the problems of the FB minnow brand: they’re doing everything right, and the few fans they have are loyalists, so how do they grow?
Here are some ways to grow a minnow FB brand:
- The obvious: pay for it. FB advertising is affordable and incredibly “targetable”, offering an effective way to reach the right people. Even if you are doing $10 / day, you’re reaching new people for steady growth. (Do more if you can. See what works. Optimize as you go.) Promotions such as contests and sweepstakes are another way to grow – but you may have to advertise to get the word out to those beyond your current fan base.
- The creative: barter free partnerships with like-minded brands (always seek out ones with far more fans than you have). Offer some sort of giveaway on their page to tie in with yours. And watch for growth spikes as these happen.
- The personal: enlist your fans. There are so many great things about social media – including the ability to ask fans what they like about you and leverage those insights. Loyal fans want to spread the word about their discoveries. Help them help you.
However you choose to grow your FB fan base, don’t sacrifice brand authenticity in exchange for numbers. Social media should be a way to expand your brand personality, not lose it.