Facebook has emerged as a powerful marketing medium. Here are the top approaches to consider.
Facebook has grown too big for marketers to ignore. Over 117 million Americans visited Facebook in March 2010 and the average visitor spent almost seven hours during the month on the site, as tracked by Nielsen. According to comScore, from March 2009 to March 2010 Facebook's unique visitors increased about 90 percent and its average minutes per visitor increased almost 50 percent.
To show that there's been a tipping point, traffic to Facebook has exceeded traffic to Google since the week ending March 13, 2010. From a marketing perspective, it's important to note that Facebook, like Google, has become a major referrer of traffic. For example, Starbucks has over 7 million Fans (or, in Facebook-speak, "people who like it"). Furthermore, Facebook is the most searched term across search engines, according to Experian Hitwise. Marketers should also note that Facebook is becoming device indifferent. While computers are the preferred device for checking Facebook, 46 percent of the under 35 demographic use their mobile phone to access Facebook, based on Retrevo's October 2009 Gadgetology Report.
7 Actionable Facebook Tactics for Marketers
While Facebook was initially used by entities with small budgets, such as advocacy and not-for-profit organizations, now, everyone's using it. Facebook is a "must have" for every marketer whether you're a retailer, brand, or media entity. Even companies in regulated industries, whose legal and compliance hurdles make social media a challenge to implement, are using it. For example, TIAA-CREF, a well established financial services company, just launched its "Raise the Rate" campaign on Facebook.
But Facebook requires a different approach from other forms of marketing messaging and engagement. To develop and expand your Facebook marketing strategy, here are seven actionable tactics:
Facebook has proven to be much more than a passing fad. Many organizations now realize that it has turned into a powerful marketing medium, so long as you do the required planning and integrate it properly with the rest of your marketing and overall business strategy.
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Heidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies, an interactive marketing consultancy. She has over 20 years' experience helping clients increase profitability by developing innovative marketing programs to acquire and retain customers based on solid analytics. Clients include New York Times Digital, AccuWeather.com, CheapTickets, and the UJA. Additionally, Riverside Marketing Strategies has worked with numerous other online content/media companies and e-tailers.
Prior to starting Riverside Marketing Strategies, Heidi held a number of senior-level marketing positions at The Economist, the Bookspan/Doubleday Direct division of Bertelsmann, and Citibank.
Heidi is also a popular speaker on current industry topics.
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Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce
This Magic Quadrant examines leading digital commerce platforms that enable organizations to build digital commerce sites. These commerce platforms facilitate purchasing transactions over the Web, and support the creation and continuing development of an online relationship with a consumer.
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12:00pm ET/9:00am PT