Wednesday, 1 May 2013

3 Strategies For Facebook Marketing and 5 Brands that Really Get It

Since Facebook’s rise to social king, it seems like every company and brand is now on the site. However, a presence on Facebook doesn’t necessarily mean a company’s marketing strategy on Facebook is working for them. Earlier this year, Mashable ran an article called “Steal These 3 Social Marketing Tricks From Top Brands,” which outlined three social marketing strategies: passion, personality, and transparency. By encompassing all three, but truly highlighting one strategy, companies can take themselves from simply offering products to becoming lifestyle brands. To illustrate this, here are 5 companies that are successfully marketing themselves as lifestyle brands on Facebook.

Passion

BMW

If one word describes BMW owners, it would be “enthusiasts.” The people at BMW must know that owners love a chance to show off their beemers, so the company’s Facebook encourages fans to post photos and share where they’ve recently taken their beloved car. By suggesting that fans post pictures of the adventures they’ve gone on in their BMWs, the company connects to the fact that it’s a luxury brand, and those who own luxury cars are likely able to go on frequent trips. Fans happily oblige, but their engagement doesn’t stop there. BMW also puts concept videos and pictures on their Facebook page to show fans what the company is developing and what the next generation of cars will look like. It’s like a personal car show right on Facebook, and every car enthusiast is crazy about car shows. BMW’s heavy use of visuals illustrates their understanding that visuals are important for engagement and allows the company to play to its strengths as an aesthetically brilliant brand.

GoPro

GoPro makes small portable cameras that let people record themselves doing their favorite extreme activities such as skiing, surfing, and mountain biking. To accentuate the professional aspect of their brand, GoPro posts pictures and videos on their Facebook by GoPro-sponsored athletes using the cameras in the X Games or similar sporting events. Individuals can share their own pictures and videos shot with their GoPros showing themselves enjoying their favorite activities. Another area GoPro excels in is customer interaction. Not only do they promote their “Everything We Make” sweepstakes, by which one person wins everything they make daily, but they also utilize Facebook’s new “reply” feature to talk to fans. Rather than replying basic or pre-written messages, they respond to fans with actual statements and opinions like “McMorris is a boss, but he doesn’t compete in SuperPipe.”  Needless to say, GoPro has an excellent Facebook marketing campaign that has easily led them to their 5.1 million fans.

Personality

Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola’s description of their Facebook page is a “collection of stories showing how people from around the world have helped
make coke what it is today,” which serves to highlight their focus and gratitude toward their customers. Coke’s Facebook page certainly plays to a consumer’s lifestyle since it continuously posts images of a variety of situations in which a person might be drinking coke. In addition, the company frequently posts humorous images and images that poke fun at pop culture (like the politically-charged one to the right). Another recent image, celebrating “High Five Day,” shows two bottles of Coca-Cola with stick arms high fiving one another. Lastly, Coke uses Facebook to advertise their Perfect Harmony promotion with American Idol; an interactive feature that allows fans to vote on lyrics of a Carly Rae Jepsen song on a weekly basis before the song will be released in its entirety. Contestants who vote for song lyrics are also eligible to win prizes or a trip to the American Idol finale.
Unlike GoPro, which is targeted to a very specific extreme sports lifestyle, Coca Cola broadly markets itself as a drink to go along with the daily ins and outs of life. This strategy has been seen in the company’s television and print ads as well, presenting a consistent message across different forms of advertising.

Transparency

TOMS

Toms, the popular shoe company, uses Facebook to promote their products as well as their social cause: One For One. The One For One movement derives its name from the simple premise that for every pair of Toms that are bought, Toms will give a pair of
shoes to a child in need. In addition to shoes, Toms sells eyewear with the same attached giving model; for every pair of glasses sold, Toms provides prescription glasses or medical care to someone in need. On their website, Toms says they are actively giving in twelve developing countries such as Cambodia, Guatemala, and Ethiopia. On Facebook, Toms page simply states their slogan, One For One, both in their profile picture and cover photo. It’s common to see pictures and videos showing where the socially conscious company is helping people around the world, letting customers see just how their purchases are helping others. Transparency is especially important for a company that actively integrates its social mission as a key part of its brand in order to show that the company is actually fulfilling its claims. Toms smartly uses its Facebook page to do just that, giving consumers a clear look at how the company is making a difference.

Chipotle

While it’s surprising that a brand like Chipotle would focus on transparency (perhaps this is because the company used to be part-owned by McDonalds), visitors can see the company’s intentions to be honest
 through their cover photo, which has the tagline “Responsibly Raised, Skillfully Made.” Chipotle’s strategy is to differentiate themselves from other fast casual restaurants by highlighting their use of naturally raised meats, which started with their “Back To The Start” video from a few years ago, complete with a stripped down version of Coldplay’s “The Scientist.” Chipotle’s social marketing team posts links to articles about the farmers who supply their meat, and focuses on how the animals are raised without antibiotics. Chipotle has recently made an TV ad that focuses on how they source their meats from naturally raised animal farms rather than industrial farms. In sum, Chipotle’s tactics toward transparency allows them to own their “food with integrity” mantra.