How to Engage Your Facebook Fans in Conversation
One of the best ways to market with Facebook is to look at the dialogue and conversations that occur on your page. Look for trends in consumer feedback and take a step back to see what your fans are talking about. This can be invaluable information.
Cultivate engagement with two-way dialogue
In a nutshell, engagement is about getting your fans to take action, which means posting on your Page, commenting on your posts, clicking the Like button next to your posts, and sharing your content. A well-executed engagement strategy takes time and effort. More than anything, engagement is really about showing up daily and taking a genuine interest in the likes, interests, and opinions of your fans.
The rule for engagement is making it about your fans and not about you. Remember that people love to talk about themselves, so craft your posts and questions around them, and you’re sure to see some great conversations begin to surface on your Page.
A massive fan base left disengaged is a recipe for disaster! Take action; start talking with your fans regularly.
Encourage fan-to-fan conversations
The key here is to enhance your fans’ experience by creating a community that encourages peer-to-peer communication. Here are a few key strategies you can use to get fans talking to one another:
Showcase fans. Create a Member of the Month campaign or an opportunity to spotlight your fans directly on your Facebook Page. When fans are recognized, they tell their Friends — which encourages even more fan-to-fan interaction.
Recognize top contributors. When you have someone on your Page who likes to answer questions from fans, or who often offers suggestions, take advantage of this enthusiasm. Ask the fan to be an ambassador for your Page. Give your biggest advocates specific guidelines and responsibilities, and reward them with perks. Their involvement will free up time for you to concentrate on other ways to grow.
Make word-of-mouth advocacy easy
It’s a fact that customers trust their friends and other customers more than they trust a brand. Think of it this way.
If you were going to buy a new pair of running shoes, who would you listen to: your good friend who is an avid runner and who just purchased a pair, or the shoe manufacturer that’s posting a promotion about those shoes on its Facebook Page? Gravitating toward the person you have a relationship with is human nature. That’s precisely why word-of-mouth advocacy is essential.
To encourage word-of-mouth advocacy, you want to make it easy for your fans to talk about you. Here are a couple of suggestions:
Ask a fan to like a post or Share a post. When you post a link to a new article on your Facebook Page, add a line at the end of the post that says, “If you like this article, please click the link to share it with your friends!” Keep the tone light and conversational, and your fans will be happy to oblige.
Do something that encourages self-expression. People love to talk about themselves and share their thoughts, feelings, and feedback. Create an experience that makes them want to share your content with their friends. This is how the viral experience is created. To do this, you can create a poll on your Page or run a contest that gets your audience excited about engaging with you.