Is Facebook the Biggest Marketing Swindle of our Time?
This article is Part 2 of our Role of Social Media series. Feel free to check out Part 1.
Over the years, the biggest Social Media channel, Facebook, has become a paid marketing platform. Every year less and less studies are done on the organic reach of Facebook, because it simply is a dying phenomenon. Some people call the evolution of Facebook “the biggest swindle in modern day marketing” but there are benefits to the platform we seem to already take for granted. Over 2 billion users and 5 million advertisers on Facebook is impressive by any measure. In order to unlock the Social Media opportunities in marketing though, let’s look at organic reach as it stands today.
Here are the expected engagement rates in Facebook, Twitter and Instagram on scale.
It is hard to justify publishing any content on Social Media channels organically with these engagement rates. It is not likely to yield a positive return if only 4 out of 100 users will engage, no matter what you’re selling. Hence it is important to understand the role Social Media can play in the mix and choose the most suitable approach based on your marketing objectives. We have two primary objectives in marketing: attracting new users and retaining existing ones. Today, let’s take a brief look at how Social Media can help with retaining existing users.
Retaining Existing Users with Social Media
Retaining existing users has a few different sub-objectives in marketing, so, ask yourself, ‘what’s my objective in this particular campaign or strategy?’.
Brand awareness is important not only to the extent that users know who you are and what you do but also for content engagement to generate a higher user return rate.
But how? As discussed previously in ‘Role of Social in your Brand – Pt.1’, you want to position yourself as a “BrandHero” and use all elements to build a cohesive brand.
For instance, Heineken invested heavily in experiential marketing to connect with their users on their Social Media platforms. Their well-crafted Social Media campaigns like #ShareTheSofa and #CampionTheMatch boosted the brand awareness and positioned them as the No. 1 beer brand associated with Champions League. In this case, their strategy involves using all of their Social Media platforms to drive awareness, paid advertisements, and landing pages on their websites. Let’s take a look at their latest campaign, #ShareTheDrama:
From the Heineken case study, we found they engage with their users from all of their Social Media platforms, but with a twist. Similar but different content is used for each and every platform to keep a consistent brand message but shows they understand clearly their fans or followers in each Social Media platform.
For example, Heineken uses Facebook for a mix of updates, images, and videos related to current sports and music news and events. They use Facebook Live to display brewing experts capitalizing on its brand’s heritage and they frequently engage users with contests and quizzes.
Here is an example of Heineken’s #ShareTheDrama campaign contest;
Understanding the recent Facebook algorithm, Heineken decided to go with a video format and have a short caption that leaves their fans and followers intrigued with its campaign’s hashtags.
On the contrary, here is their direct competitor’s Facebook post to show how Heineken is leading the pack in its industry on Social Media.
Comparing the two companies, the engagement for both brands is very different mainly due to 1) the length of the content and 2) the attractiveness of prizes. Hence, as shown by Heineken knowing the interests of your fans and followers is crucial to boosting engagement rates.
Retention is highly dependent on brand engagement as the more people talk positively about a brand, the greater the brand recall rate and hence, the higher the brand loyalty.
The Adidas: Tango Squad case study shows that not only have they transformed an existing fan base of customers into a community but they have also strengthened their loyalty towards the brand, as well as, increased brand engagement in both, online and offline arenas. This case study is a perfect example of a well planned Social Media campaign to promote brand loyalty.
What we are really saying is, it is not recommended to rely on organic reach to engage with existing customers, users, or fans.
What do you think? Leave a comment down below and let us know if you think otherwise.