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Social media is rapidly becoming one of the most popular ways to market a business online. It is ideal for enhancing your brand and allows you to interact with both existing and potential customers. Thus I was surprised when it was announced that Facebook's growth has 'slowed considerably'.
The social network, which averages at 20 million new users a month, achieved notably lower figures in April (13.9 million) and May (11.8 million). And it doesn't stop there. Further reports are suggesting that Facebook is now less likely to increase customers and business sales than Twitter.
So what does this apparent decline mean for the future of Facebook as a marketing tool? Whether it is accurate or not, this research shouldn't discourage you from using Facebook for your business - even if growth is slowing, the site still managed to gain 368,000 new recruits between February and May in the UK alone, and is closing in on 700 million users worldwide.
What's more, new and innovative ways of using Facebook to market your business are popping up all the time. Here's how your business can keep up with Facebook's changes and innovation.
F-CommerceF-Commerce allows you to integrate your e-commerce site with your company's fan page. It is one of the most exciting elements of Facebook's evolution and proves its ongoing commercial power. Using F-Commerce is a chance to ensure your products can be purchased as soon as your customers visit your fan page.
Tips for Your F-Commerce Page
- Navigation: Your F-Commerce site should be appealing and easy to navigate - just like your original website.
- Branding: Don't forget to brand your F-Commerce page. This is an opportunity to reinforce your company's values, logo and overall image.
- Product Pages: Include clear, concise descriptions of your products.
- User Experience: Create a platform that your customers will want to buy from. Ensure that everything, from the layout to the images, is attractive and user friendly.
Lyle & Scott F-Commerce Page
Facebook ApplicationsDeveloping an app for your Facebook page is great for promoting your brand and connecting with your customers. However, beware of adding an application without considering it carefully. It is important to think about the most suitable app for the nature of your business. Your concept should be relevant and contribute to the promotion of your service, or product.
Facebook App Inspiration
- Polls: Creating a poll is a simple way to connect with your fans and generate interest.
- Factual: Applications that offer interesting and useful information have proven to be successful.
- Games: A good game concept will attract users and enhance the visibility of your brand.
- Competitions: Develop a compeition to increase your number of fans and promote your products.
Marks & Spencer 'Ideas for Father's Day' App
Social Media SuccessSo ultimately the answer is yes, it is still well worth investing time and energy in marketing your business on Facebook. However your business needs to stand out from the masses as Facebook, and other social networking sites, continues to evolve, by embracing new and innovative forms of marketing.
To find out how you should be using Facebook, get in touch with the I-COM social media team on 0161 402 3170 or email us. Alternatively, you can contact us on our twitter @I_COM, where you will find more tips social media marketing.