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So you’ve got pages, fans, and likes.Now what?
Your brand, like many, likely struggles with deriving valuefrom your Facebook investments. What’s a fan worth? A like?What do you really even know about your Facebook fans? Andhow can you create something of lasting value from such anenormous, yet so fleeting a channel?Everything about Facebook is so enticing, yet just beyondour grasp. It’s free. It’s huge. We find many thousands of ourcustomers there. They “like” us. They tell us what they want,need, and wish for on our Facebook page walls. It seems theperfect social media engagement platform.Yet with each status update, each positive comment, everycustomer inquiry, and all the ingenious product ideas wesee disappearing from the Facebook wall every hour, we findourselves wondering what we’re doing there at all. What goodis Facebook as a platform for social customer engagementunless we can engage our social customers in ways thatmake real sense for our customers and drives real businessoutcomes for the brand?The first thing to remember is that as an online socialnetwork the Facebook platform wasn’t built for socialcustomer engagement. It lacks many of the essentialsneeded to pursue a successful social strategy—data capture,for one. But the good news is you can turn Facebook into avibrant social customer online community with the addition of just a few key must-haves.
Peer-to-peer engagement is one of the most important typesof social customer engagement because messages carriedfrom peer-to-peer have more influence. Eileen Brown ofthe Social Customer explains the reason why peer-to-peerengagement works so well quite simply: “We tend to identifymore strongly with people like us. We love those who are likeourselves. We identify with them.”
An excellent way to start getting value from your Facebookpages right away is to give them a customer experience thatincludes interaction with each other. Enabling your own fans tospread your messages and answer each other’s questions addsenormous trust and credibility to your Facebook presence.“Start by creating an environment that encourages peer-to-peer interactions”, says Altimeter Group Partner and PrincipalAnalyst, Jeremiah Owyang, “Ask fans to respond to each other,showcase fan contributions, and recognize top contributors.”
Harnessing the crowd’s energy and fulfilling customer need iswhat social customer marketing is all about. Harnessing thecrowd’s energy
fulfill customer need is what peer-to-peerengagement is all about. Peer-to-peer engagement—enablingyour Facebook fans to help each other—with question andanswer applications, community moderation, and rank andreputation features makes immediate sense and can evenscale to a full-blownsocial support solution. It gives customersvalue when they get there—they can search for and find usefulinformation. And it drives real business value for the brand—less support calls means less support costs.