Reading an article in Inside Facebook yesterday (read it here) reminded me that most people still don’t really know the basics of how to succeed in social media. Companies are still placing a wasted amount of effort and money on their Facebook Pages when what they should really be focused on is getting the content right. In this context, right implies relevancy, timing, and place.
Most people only visit a Facebook page once, when they hit that like button. Now that people can Like a page directly from websites, the amount of time spent on a Facebook page is even less. Liking a company on Facebook doesn’t mean that your audience wants to hang out with you on your page, it’s just simply an invitation to supply content to them. Think of Facebook and Twitter as just glorified RSS feeds, or a customized newspaper. People friend people and like pages because they want to be able to follow that individual or company from one centralized location and that is their own Facebook page. When people Like your page, they’re really just liking your content and giving you permission to enter their stream.
The real challenge is not in creating a stellar page, but in getting your brand’s content noticed in the midst of everything else flowing by in the stream during the few moments, 7 times a day, that your audience’s eyeballs are focused there. Time it wrong and they’ll never see it. Be too self-promoting or irrelevant to them and they won’t pay attention. Give them something of value that not only catches their attention, but that they can engage with and will want to share and you’ve succeeded.