Showing posts with label Electronic commerce. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Electronic commerce. Show all posts

Monday, September 10, 2012

Facebook Marketing and Social Integration

Illustration of Facebook mobile interface
Illustration of Facebook mobile interface (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Facebook, which was once only known for social gatherings and connecting with friends on the web, is beginning to look more and more like a huge online marketplace. Retailers are scrambling to reach the enormous audience that Facebook draws in daily and turn users into paying customers. It started with the Facebook fan pages, which allowed businesses to build a presence for their brand on the social media website. They can add an unlimited number of fans on their fan page, and many leading retailers have already successfully built a large following. Recently Facebook has been connected to e-commerce on an even larger scale. Many of these businesses that are already well established in Facebook are starting to create their own ecommerce apps, which allows them to sell their products to their fans directly through Facebook. 

If you own an e-commerce business or are thinking of starting one and you have not tried Facebook marketing yet then you better get started. First, you must build a Facebook fan page. It's fast and easy, simply look for the link on their website and fill out the information. Once you have done that, it's time to really begin customizing the page in a fun way that will attract visitors and get them to become fans. Below is a list of features on the fan page and how you can use it to market your business. 

Wall - have fans leave comments in this area, share their thoughts, help make suggestions, ask a question, etc. 

Info - write a description of your business, make it clever and remember to speak to your audience in a way that they will like 

Notes - post the latest news regarding your ecommerce business, announce promotions, etc. 

FBML - create up to 10 customizable html display areas that allows you to add anything you want 

Photos - post pictures of your products and you allow your fans to share theirs 

Discussions - get the conversation started, let fans give you feedback 

Videos - post videos to promote your products and demonstrate how to use them, you can also allow your fans to share their videos 

Events - announce special upcoming events or promotions 

Reviews - let fans rate your products or services 

Others - add other applications created by third party developers that are meant for use on the fanpage 

Once you have your fan page set up you can begin focusing on how to attract traffic. Your page does not have to be perfect, it is one of those things where the more interaction you are able to get, the better the content. So start small and watch it grow and develop over time. Once you are able to better understand your fans, you can think more creatively about what to include on your Facebook fanpage. A good idea is to create exclusive coupons just for them. You can also develop a fun contest for them as part of a promotional campaign where the winner receives something for free. Try to think of as many creative and fun Facebook marketing ideas to increase the amount of interaction on your fanpage. 

Ads are another great Facebook marketing tactic to get people to become better acquainted with your brand. However Facebook ads are in a lot of ways very different from other kinds of advertisements. The advertisements on Facebook cannot focus on direct sales like Google AdWords ads can. The reason is because they each have an entirely different type of audience. The group on Facebook are there to socialize whereas the group on Google tend to already know what they want and actively search for it. When trying to reach a Facebook user, you should not push your products on them. You have to first give them a reason to become a fan and then develop a relationship with them. Once the relationship is there, you can find interactive ways to keep your products and your brand fresh in their mind, and the chances of them turning into a customer is much better. What you need to do is apply to become an advertiser on the Facebook network and create banner ads that link to your Facebook fanpage instead of your e-commerce site. 

Most recently, an increasingly popular Facebook marketing technique is direct selling. Since selling directly on Facebook is now all the rage, there is no reason for you not to do it. The big name retailers are just beginning to make their fanpages even more interactive by listing their products there. Those that have already built a large community are discovering that merging e-commerce with Facebook is turning out to be very profitable.

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