pages

About a year ago, I wrote how it was possible to merge unofficial Facebook pages if you had a big enough media buy.However a recent change now means that anyone can apply to have fans migrated from an unofficial page over to an official one, even without a contact as Facebook. Although they don't promote it much, the steps are quite simple and are as follows:You will need to 'authenticate' your official page by submitting it for review here (it doesn't look legit but it is!). This may take up to a few business days to complete.Once authenticated, you can request that the fans from unofficial pages be migrated across to the official one here. Again, this may take a few days.This is not normally the type of content I post here, but I figure it's a great piece of knowledge to have and is usually an easy way to get some fan growth. And at the same time you're reducing the potential risk of your brand in someone else's hands.If it works for you, be sure to buy me a beer sometime....

Here's some fun statistics for you that I promise I didn't make up. 71% of peeps are becoming more selective regarding the pages they Like on Facebook The two main reasons people leave pages are because updates aren't relevant or are posted too often. When this happens 19% of peeps do nothing, 38% block the posts from their News Feed and 43% unlike the page. As more and more brands jump on the Facebook bandwagon, the market gets to a point of saturation and fans start to get choosey. There's only so many times you can click the Like button. The first-mover advantage was a win if you got there, but you probably didn't which means you really need to be doing something of value on your page. Most brands think the solution is to launch with a campaign and a media buy to build a foundation audience. Which usually works. But once that's over, they spend the rest of the year when their budget runs out pumping out pointless status updates. There's only so many times you can ask someone to Like a status or fill in the blank. I know I'm guilty of it, where you write bait posts to crack a good level of engagement. But at some point people are going to start seeing past these shitty pointless status updates that don't mean anything. Instead, you need to be entertaining or useful. There's enough brands trying the former (most of them failing), but not enough for the latter. And I reckon one really useful post does better things for your brand and page than 20 pointless ones....

Stephen King wrote the novel Misery that later became a movie of the same name. Although I've not read it, Wikipedia tells me it's a story about a women who rescues an author after he crashes his car in the snow. She recognises him as her favourite author of a series she's obsessed with. Locked in by the snow, she takes him to her home and nurses him for months. However she discovers a manuscript of his latest novel and doesn't like it. Her series is ruined and it eventually leads her to cut off his foot, holds him captive and forces him to rewrite the ending. I think social media, particularly community managers, are increasingly going to have the same problem. Social media is great for building a community around your brand, or bringing together an already established one. What you can then do with this group of evangelists is limited only by your creativity. But by bringing together this group of hardcore fans, you also bring in the fans that are a little too hardcore; the fans whose obsession with your brand becomes harmful. They don't quite fit the mold of your perfect target market, where their social awkwardness is not limited on platforms of such an impersonal nature. Their constant activity becomes spam and a slight wrongdoing in their eyes creates an unwarranted response. These obsessed lovers become haters. I have a friend who does promo work, usually giving away free samples. I found it amusing when she told me she was only allowed to approach consumers who were in the target market, but never to turn down anyone when they approached her, no matter who they were. Many of those who approached her would not reflect positively on the brand. But she dealt with them by keeping them happy, allowing them to move on. But with social media these people don't have to leave. These crazies can continue to interact with the normals and when you create a branded community, they think they're being encouraged to do so. And dealing with these people can be difficult. Particularly if you like your feet....

Brands are quickly jumping on Facebook in massed. And most of them are putting a some money behind media and these pages to build strategy, content and a well managed community.Sooner or later though, there'll be too many brands on Facebook. There's only so much room in one's consideration set for brands they'll follow on Facebook, before they say no more. The quality of content, freebies that are given away and innovation will make a difference. So will the degree of how rad your brand is (banks and life insurance companies might struggle). Above all, I imagine given how lazy consumers tend to be, it will be survival of fastest. Those brands that get in early will probably succeed simply because people can't be bothered deleting them....