9. Encourage your fans to share content
Fans' sharing content with their friends is a great way to gain new fans. But it's also a way to strengthen your relationship with existing fans. By asking fans to share content, you make them a partner in your Facebook fan community. This partnership increases loyalty. Only a small percentage of your fans will share without some form of an incentive. However, for pages with hundreds of thousands of fans, a small percentage of sharing can equal a sizeable volume of awareness and increased loyalty. Incent when you can, but encourage fans to share regardless.
10. Stay on top of the competition
You should "like" your competitors' Facebook pages. You should be visiting their pages weekly. Look at how they are interacting with their fans and how their fans are interacting with them. Become part of the complete fan experience so you can see exactly how to make it better for your customers. Rest assured your competitors are doing the same with your page.
11. Advertise to fans who are also fans of your competitors
Facebook's ad platform will allow you to target fans of your page, as well as of your competitors. The goal here is not to steal new fans from your competitors; it's to maintain a stronger connection with your fans than your competitors are forging. If they are fans of both pages, it's important that you stand out. Before you advertise, consider your message, CTA, and the destination that your fans will land on. Test and refine your ads to maximize the impact. The cost here is fairly minimal, especially if you are buying ads on a CPC basis.
12. Advertise to your fans on their birthday
Facebook's ad platform will also enable you to target ads to fans on their birthdays. What better way to inspire fan loyalty than wishing them a personalized message on their special day? Here also, the cost should be fairly low, as you are only advertising to those fans having a birthday on the day(s) your ad runs. With the CPC option, you only pay for those fans that click on the ad. The clicks should go to a custom landing tab or an external page with a birthday greeting.
13. Ask your fans to contribute
From product/service feedback to photo contests and more, your fans are eager to give their opinions and personally express themselves through your brand. By asking your fans for opinions and opening up the community for fan-generated content, you turn the fan into a character in your brand's story. Something as simple as asking your fans for suggestions on how to make the fan experience better for them can go a long way in creating loyalty.
14. Give fans inside access, exclusive content, and special deals
Giving your fans a VIP Facebook experience is a must, especially in highly competitive industries. Again, your competitors are vying for your fans' attention, and so it's important that they feel rewarded for being a fan of your page vs. "the other guys" Push exclusive content, breaking news, and special deals to your fans often. You will find them interacting with these exclusives at a higher rate, all the while strengthening your connection to them.
15. Use page insights to measure page traffic and interaction
While wall insights will give you a sense of the reach of your wall posts, page insights will tell you how that reach translates to engagement. In addition to the demographic information I referenced earlier, page insights will tell you what types of content are the most popular as well as provide insights into what types of interaction you are getting from your fans. You can also measure the traffic to your page and overall activity. This data is absolutely critical in your efforts to optimize overall engagement. The more engaged, the more likely that fan is to stay by your side.
Building an effective and scalable Facebook marketing channel is more than acquiring fans. It requires time, experimentation, and a focus on metrics to turn a new fan into an active and loyal one. You've likely spent a fair amount of time and money in getting your customers to "like" you. By implementing some of the strategies above, they will come to "love" you.
Scott Meldrum is chief pollin8or at Pollin8.
On Twitter? Follow Scott at @ScottMeldrum. Follow iMedia Connection at @iMediaTweet.