Most organisations have finally realised the potential of social media marketing and have found themselves hopping on the social media bandwagon. However, just being present on the main social media platforms is not going to help out at all. You need to make your businessí pages easily found. Your brand needs to interact, create value and produce engaging content for its users to help reach your business objectives. One of the best ways to increase your brands reach is to create an engaging app for your Facebook page.
So what kind of App can I build?
A recent study compiled by Wildfire looked into 7 standard types of applications businesses can implement on Facebook. Firstly, letís define each of the 7 types;
1. Sweepstake: Sweepstakes are similar to a lottery whereby the winner of the prize is selected randomly. A user would enter their name and any other information required in return for a chance of winning.
2. Giveaway: Similar to the above, a giveaway application works by users inputting their information via a ësigning upí form in order for a brand sponsored giveaway.
3. Pick-your-favourite: This app allows a user to pick their favourite from a selection of pre-determined items e.g a selection of photos depicting different holiday destinations.
4. Trivia: A trivia application gives users multiple choice answers to users to test their knowledge on a subject area.
5. Quiz: A quiz app, much like a trivia app, gets users to answer a series of multiple choice questions. Results display an image and a statement e.g. ìI took the ëWhich Movie Star Are Youí Quiz and found out Iím Brad Pittî
6. Coupon: Just like the paper form, this app would allow users to print off vouchers to use instore.
7. Video, essay and photo contest: These three apps function identically except for the type of media the user is called upon to upload. Winners of the contest can be determined either by an administrator at the company or by a public vote, or by a combination of the two.
What App generates the most engagement?
Wildfireís study looked at the results from over 10,000 Facebook campaigns over the last 9 months and concluded that ësweepstakesí, ëgiveawaysí and ëcouponsí made for the most engaging applications. More users interacted and engaged with these types of apps than any other. The reasons behind this include the perceived value of the sweepstake prize and the chance of winning something for minimal effort (low barrier to entry).
However, Wildfireís study also identified another interesting trend: the most entered campaigns are not the campaigns which generate the most sharing.
When focusing on the ëearned mediaí campaigns can generate it was found some applications are inherently more ìshareabaleî and therefore more likely to go viral than others. The campaigns that saw the most sharing were ëpick your favouritesí, ëquizzesí and ëtrivia contestsí. Whatís the reasoning behind this you may be thinking? Well, these apps publicly display a userís personality, characteristics, style, aptitude or thoughts on a specific subject area. Users enjoy sharing this sort of information about themselves as they believe it will make them look good in front of the rest of their social network.
Wildfire concluded that the most shared campaign applications were designed to either;
1. Allow the user to discover an aspect of their personality of which they were previously unaware, or
2. Display facets of their personality that they know about and want to share with their friend list.
Users who post the results of their favourite image/their score in a quiz are actually showing off. When designing a quiz it is therefore important to look at the results the quiz will generate.
When a Facebook user clicks on a newsfeed post from a friend participating in a quiz a massive 82% of them go on to take the quiz themselves! This is an extraordinary large figure and should indicate to all page owners that they need to work a quiz application into their social media strategy.
How to run a best practice campaign
When designing your businessí social media content it is important to understand and consider the behaviours and interactions that will inspire the end user to enter and share you brands content. Wildfireís study proved that if an interaction with a brands page will show off their individual style, aptitude or personality that they will be more likely to share the results on their newsfeed and to the rest of their friends.
Therefore, if you chose to design an app that allows a user to express themselves, first of all make sure the results of the quiz make an individual feel proud to share their results. For example you may have a quiz that asks a number of questions to find out a users personality type. How a user answers each question will help categorize individuals say into 4 different personality groups. Make sure, whatever result a user gets, that description the application allows a user to share on their newsfeed is one a user will actually want to share!
The marketing team behind the launch of the recent Dark Shadows movie have used these best practices to great effect by creating a beautifully designed quiz app for their Facebook page. The quiz asks a series of comical questions related to themes around the movie which then determine which character from the movie a user is most like. The results a user receives from the quiz are compelling and humorous and show off a userís personality in a creative way. This resulted in large amounts of sharing which could have only helped more people know about the existence of the movie.
A further best practice Wildfireís study uncovered was the importance of incentivizing sharing behaviours. Consider building in to your app some elements that rewards users for sharing and posting. Mountain Dewís recent ìDew Crewî campaign does just that with its intuitive sharing options that encourage users to use the applications features and share it with friends to score points which can be used to redeem branded merchandise.
I would encourage everyone to take a closer look at this Facebook application as I believe it is the benchmark for every future social media campaign to come. The application includes quizzes and incentives to share. Moreover, it incorporates the benefits of ësweepstakesí and ëgiveawaysí with the ease of entry and the ability to earn a valued reward for little effort. The application is highly interactive, is branded superbly and is simple to use. It gives users a reason to come back (earn more points, unlock more free goodies) and also uses a small part of the screen to earn money through selling advertising.
A strong social media marketing strategy is one that approaches the creation of branded applications and content for users from different angles. A social media campaign should be broken down in to different parts; one part of the overall campaign should be designed to achieve high participation rates to capture user information (email addresses, names) for future marketing. Other aspects of the campaign should focus on getting users to share the application with as many people as possible to enhance brand reach. This can be done by creating several different applications that sit of your brands Facebook page or by creating one application that covers both aspects at the same time. I would recommend building one application that covers both aspects, but would also encourage creating several other smaller apps that focus on each of the individual objectives.