Social Networking: Six Shining Examples Of Facebook Page Design
Friday, January 7th, 2011
In 2010, Facebook accounted for 44% of all sharing across the entire internet. 44% of everything shared online, between businesses, friends and colleagues was facilitated by this single social network. The site currently has around 500 million active users (users that have logged in within the last 30 days), with over half of these logging in on a daily basis. This equates to us collectively spending around 700 billion minutes on Facebook per month. That’s a fair audience in anyone’s book.
With the service garnering so much attention, it simply cannot be overlooked by anyone wishing to maintain a well-rounded online strategy. It is important to keep in mind however, that Facebook is not a standard, stoic marketing channel and cannot be used as such. For clients to gain real benefits from Facebook, it must be something they are willing to nurture, engaging with customers in order to build a community focused around their product or service.
For those willing though, Facebook offers a powerful and versatile promotional too. A tool that can facilitate a direct channel of communication to a loyal, consenting customer base, specifically interested in your product or service. Here are six of the finest corporate Facebook pages that we have come across. Make no mistake, these are finely tuned machines for building brands, targeting consumers and most importantly, generating sales.
Blackberry have gone to great lengths to make information readily available without users being navigated away from the page. This is an important factor when it comes to design for social media, as users are bombarded by constant distractions such as advertisements, notifications and instant messages. We want the user to find value in the page and consider returning to the page, if not purchasing a product or service listed. If the page holds sufficient value the visitor will hopefully ‘like’ the page. This profile does a great job of offering up the information needed by potential customers to quickly and easily make informed decisions about products in which they may be interested.
As Facebook introduce additional functionality, we’re seeing more opportunities opening up to businesses with their finger on the pulse. Facebook ‘places’ which was introduced last year, allows users to ‘check-in’ or update their status with location information. This can be used to great effect in social media strategies as was shown by Electronic Arts in the run up to Christmas 2010. Electronic Arts introduced a competition in which only users who had checked-in at one of their tour events could enter. This is a great way of attracting larger numbers to physical locations via online incentives. Not only did it boost footfall in stores, but it also served to promote the EA brand to the entire friend list of anyone who checked-in at one of their events. This is a great way to expand a fan base and generate impressions with very little outlay.
Pixar focus on the core interest of their fans, by utilising a Facebook profile filled with video content. fans can watch trailers and behind the scenes videos from the studio whilst posting to a discussion board. This discussion board fosters a community based around the brand and associated products, in this case films. The design places social networking links as a key feature of the header, making it easy for fans to spread word of Pixar releases in which they may be interested.
The Twilight Saga Facebook presence is an absolute machine for converting page views into ‘likes’ and stimulating sharing of Twilight branded content. The user is given a plethora of ways in which to share content and tell friends all about Twilight. This social focus has no doubt contributed to the Twilight Saga gaining over 18 million Facebook fans worldwide! These pages do not just flaunt their huge Facebook fan base though. The pages pull in social networking conversations about the brand from Twitter too, culminating in a real time ‘discussion’ thread in which fans can clamour for attention.
As is the case with aforementioned pages, the Twilight Saga Facebook page hosts a wide array in order to satisfy visitors and captivate it’s audience for as long as possible before they browse elsewhere.
This playful design from Oreo breaks away from the often uniform nature of Facebook pages. This particular tab serves up a range of recipes, offering information of value to their visitors and giving them a reason to both ‘like’ and the share the page. Oreo also encourage fans to tag the Oreo Facebook profile in photographs of themselves enjoying the products. Oreo choose one of these user-submitted photos each week to feature in their main profile picture. This is a great way of getting fans to openly display their affiliation with the brand, developing social proof and keeping Oreo in the minds of consumers. This is also a great way for Oreo to cast a wider net in terms of social networks, as each time a user tags one of their photos in this way, the Oreo brand gains exposure to friends of their fans too.
Our final example of excellent Facebook integration is delivered by Apple iTunes. This profile is a great example of how to offer loads of functionality within a very small screen area. iTunes also offer free downloads and content exclusively for fans of their page, a great way of getting people to ‘like’ their page and broadcast affiliation across their own social networks. With attention spans so low and bounce rates so high on the web, these little incentives for converting vistors into fans are key. Once an individual has liked the page, we can then communicate with them again and again, greatly increasing the likelihood of generating sales.
So What Does All This Mean?
Looking through even a small cross-section of the more popular Facebook pages will reveal a number of key design features and behaviours that convert visitors into fans and fans into customers armed with hard cash.
1) Give people a reason to stick around for minute or two. Offer content that is of real interest to visitors, not just the hard sell, but something people can infer some value from. Invest in well designed, well thought-out material. First impressions count, and these pages are an ambassador for your brand. Try to keep content within the bounds of your Facebook pages. If we send visitors to external links they may do so before liking your page and there’s a chance they might not come back.
2) Make the best, most interesting, most desired content available only to fans… and make it as obvious and easy as possible to become a fan. Most of the time, just a small incentive is enough to convert a page hit into a ‘like’. Once you’ve got that ‘like’ you’ve opened up a direct channel of communication with an individual that is specifically interested in your brand. Not only this, but all of their online friends are made aware of this affiliation, driving further traffic towards your profile and improving brand awareness.
3) Engage in discussions that nurture your fan-base. We’re not talking about having a chat with each individual fan, but updating regularly with content that provokes a positive reaction and allows brand based discussion to flourish. Ideally we want a friendly, positive atmosphere in which fans can discuss information pertinent to your brand. You want fans to feel like they can connect with your brand but that they can also enjoy contact with others based on a common appreciation of your products or services.
4) Deliver relevant, attractive offers and start converting your fan base into a customer base. You’ve done the legwork, you’ve cultivated a network of Facebook users that are interested in your brand and that have consented to a two way discussion with it. Take full advantage of this, massage the network and deliver attractive offers with convenient, simple methods of purchase. All that remains it to watch the sales pour in, or else evaluate your interactions and make the necessary adaptations.
Here at Contrast Creative, we take pride in understanding the subtleties of social media that facilitate this conversion of visitors into loyal customers. Customers that not only generate revenue, but that also work as a promotional platform, drawing in more and more leads as a result of solid social networking.
If this is a process that you want to get to grips with, if you want a social media profile that is guaranteed to generate sales, if you want a loyal, informative and accessible customer base, then get in touch now and speak to us about getting connected.