How To Turn Your Fans Into Brand Champions On Facebook

Hopefully by now you’ve had time to get used to the changes that Facebook brought in at the beginning of the year. If you’re not sure what we mean, we wrote a blog on it, which you can read here. Or if you’re a bit short on time - here’s the cliff notes. In January, Facebook changed its algorithm to change the kinds of content its users see, shifting the focus away from business updates and onto friends and family. Great for users, not so great for business! 

One of the suggestions we made was to find the advocates for your brand (in other words, your fans) and ask them to help spread the word about your business. Today, we’re going to give you a few tips on how exactly to turn your raving fans into brand champions for your business.

Why Brand Champions Matter

 

With Facebook’s new algorithms firmly in place, relationships have become the best way to reach out to new prospects and existing customers. Having a core group of highly engaged followers is now much more valuable than having millions of disengaged ones, and they can have a huge impact on your marketing efforts. You see, social media engagement has a snowball effect. When one person interacts with your post, that person is telling Facebook’s algorithm that they like your content and find it useful. The more people who engage with the post, the more the algorithm sees its value, and more newsfeeds it will be delivered to. That increases the chances of more people interacting with it, starting the whole cycle again.

 

#1 – Find Potential Brand Champions

We all have those special fans. You know the ones. They comment on every Facebook post, like every status and retweet every tweet. They’re great!  These are your brand champions, the people who are most enthusiastic about what your business offers and deeply invested in its success. And on Facebook, you want as many of them as you can get. So how do you find them? One great way to find those hyper-engaged fans is by using tools the Facebook Ads Manager and SocialRank, which can give you granular insight into your audience, including who they are and when they are online. Then, once you’ve identified those fans, reward them for their enthusiasm! Use your platform to put them in the spotlight, feature them on your page or even send them a prize. This not only increases their experience of your brand, but it shows your followers what you want them to do. Run competitions and showcase the winners and submissions, and make sure you message individuals to let them know they’ve been features. This has been shown to significantly increase follower engagement, and audience shout-outs are often used by brands like Mini, Apple and even Thomas & Friends to reach out to potential brand champions.  

 

#2 - Recruit Brand Champions

When engaging your brand’s inner circle, good, clear communication is key. It’s quite unlikely that your brand champions will be marketing experts or social media superheroes, so you need to provide them with some nice clear directions. Make yourself a shortlist of people you want to recruit as brand champions (first on this list should be employees, but you can include customers, family, friends and prospects too), and then have a conversation with them. We’re firm believers in being open and honest, so we’d say something like:

 

‘Hey, did you know that, by liking one of our Facebook posts, you’re telling Facebook that you think our content is valuable? And because you’re interested in the content, their algorithm decides that other people might like it too, and spread the word. As the content gets more engagement, it becomes more valuable, and Facebook will show it to more people. So if you find our content valuable, we’d love it if you could give our posts a like!’

 

Of course, you can tweak your messaging depending on your relationship with the person, but most people are happy to give you a like or a share if you just ask for it.

 

#3 – Make It Easy For Brand Champions To Help You

If you want your brand champions to share your content, they need to be able to find it first! But you can’t rely on Facebook to show it to them. So, you need to get creative. You could:

 

Encourage Fans To Choose ‘See First’: When looking at your page, users can click the ‘following’ tab and select ‘see first’, which will promote your posts in their newsfeed

Create Exclusive Communities For Your Most Engaged Fans: Give your most interactive fans behind-the-scenes access to your best content. Create a group, and invite those members into it. Done right, these groups can become a lively discussion board for fans to interact and for you to share specific content with.

 

Include Links To Social Campaigns In Your Newsletters: When you’re reaching out by other means, don’t forget to include links to your social networks in there. Better still, use part of the newsletter to encourage people to follow you, and maybe even offer a reward if they do!

 

At Pickle Marketing, we love turning your customers, friends, family and even total strangers into raving fans of your business! Our experts use campaigns and techniques just like this to help promote your brand, reach out to brand champions and increase your visibility on Facebook. Plus a few more tricks we have hidden up our sleeves! If you’d like to find out more about how we can help your brand on Facebook, just get in touch with us today.

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