Social Media: The Great Enigma

If you’re like us, you know that there is great potential waiting to be unleashed through the use of social media in your marketing. With all the social media users, for example, on Facebook, the sky is the limit in terms of reaching and converting non-users of your product to users.

However, I would like to pump the brakes a bit, take a step back and look at what is realistic. The number of true users of Social Media is staggering. Facebook alone has over 1 billion active users worldwide. In fact, 66% of all millennials (15-34 year-olds) use Facebook and there are 157 million active users in the US and Canada. That’s a whopping amount of coverage.

What does this all mean to marketers?

Well, for starters, it means we have an incredible amount of permission-granted recipients for YOUR advertising message. And, we have an incredible amount of permission-granted information on these users. We know their name, age, sex, hobbies, interests and location. We know the relationship status of a vast number. Nowadays, we even know their online search history. This is some incredible information.

But, what can we do with all this information?

The first tendency for advertisers is to pick out their typical customer base and flood that targeted audience with their sales promotion. Second, when this tactic doesn’t produce their desired return immediately, they pull back and move on to something else and claim that Facebook advertising doesn’t work. It’s a classic example of placing too much emphasis, or in most cases, responsibility on one advertising medium.

Truthfully, Facebook advertising works. It works really well. But, don’t expect to put a sales price on your product or service and start counting your conversions. The reality is you need to subtly and cleverly use Facebook as an advertising vehicle. Think of it as though you are approaching two neighbors talking over a fence and you want to sell them life insurance. Together, they will send you on your way quickly. Placing advertising on Facebook is a similar social situation.

In my experience in using Facebook, you have to offer something of value in return in order to garner a click on your ad. You have to create some sort of clever engagement tool that asks for confidential contact information and in return, you will provide this thing of value and you will not sell the information you gain to someone else (Part of that trust is earned through quality advertising which we’ll cover another time).

For an example, if you are selling insurance, it might be a good idea to create some sort of questionnaire with the public that, once filled, might offer a quote or some sort of recommendation on a proper level of life insurance or something else of value to the prospective customer. So, instead of asking the reader for the business, you are really engaging the reader, allowing them to begin the courting process with you and, in the end, you both can develop a meaningful win-win relationship.

It’s not hard. But, if you’re marketing on Facebook or any social media outlet for that matter, make sure you are clever with your message, respectful of the persons reading your ad and provide something of value in return for their inquiry. If you do all those things, you can initiate a start to a relationship-building process, which is something valuable these days and not always easy to attain.