What does this mean for you, marketers?
It means that you must convert Facebook fans into email opt-in contacts. While it was a plus before, it has now become mandatory.
Engagement with fans’ communities on Facebook is conditioned to change Facebook rules.
These changes can negatively impact engagement, eliminating relationships between brands and fans, and canceling years of efforts and investment to build long lasting engagement.
By asking for fans’ emails, brands have an opportunity to continue the conversation through a one-to-one and stable channel, where rules are clear and not controlled by privately held companies.
How can marketers do this?
The easy way: forms
Marketers can integrate forms on brand page tab apps in order to obtain opt-in. Forms can include:
- Non-commercial content: newsletter subscriptions, sweepstakes, contests, quizzes, etc.
- Commercial content: exclusive products, coupons, and private sales invitations. Why exclusive? Because proposing non-exclusive content on Facebook is a lot less relevant, and simply doesn’t work, as a recent f-commerce closing confirms
Are there any limitations to this approach?
Heinz sold 3,000 bottles of ketchup on Facebook within days—and got 3,000 opt-in email contacts within days
The advanced one: social opt-in
Marketers can condition access to special sections of their brand page or their websites to enable social opt-in.
The two big advantages of social opt-in include:
- It’s easy for your prospect. Instead of filling a form, in two clicks, the prospect can access whatever information they are looking for.
- It’s high quality data. Instead of capturing 50 percent of low quality data through forms (due to errors and consumers’ strategies to protect their private life, giving false information), social opt-ins provide data directly from a Facebook profile.
This means that data is accurate 90 percent of the time and without errors. It also means data is fresh, as Facebook allows you to refresh profile information for those who have enabled a social opt-in (using social marketing solutions such as Neolane Social Marketing).
In the above example, Yves Saint Laurent asked fans for some profile information, including email addresses, to then give them the right to order a limited edition of a make-up product made for Facebook fans only.
As Forrester says “Social Media is not an island.”
It’s important to realize that Facebook users are also consumers reading emails, direct mails, browsing websites, mobile apps, visiting point of sales, etc. and having a 360° vision of their “persona.” Taking that crucial point into account will make all the difference between companies that have created a strong relationship with their customers and the others, who have addressed channels more than people.