From "Like" to Subscribe: Integrating Your Facebook and Email Marketing by guest author, Phil Hollows, CEO of Feedblitz.
There are many venues outside your blog and web site that can help grow your audience, increase brand awareness and ultimately drive sales for the small business. Facebook is often the primary place where customers and prospects interact with you and your business on a regular basis, and so Facebook Pages are a key element in modern social media marketing.
Facebook has the Audience - but not Your Brand
Unless you're making a ton of money and have invested in advanced Facebook design work, odds are your Facebook looks much like everyone else's. A lot of blue. No branding. Tabs for your wall, info and apps, and maybe a box or too on the left.
Looking consistent like this works really well for Facebook, but leaves your business undifferentiated. It's also very hard to sell anything from a Facebook page and, to all intents and purposes, impossible to monetize those visitors with ads.
The trick to branding, advertising and sales, then, is to get your Facebook audience out of the Facebook "walled garden" and onto your site, blog or mailing list.
Apps, Apps and More Apps are the Problem, not the Solution
So the first things most of us do is grab an app or two to allow email subscriptions from Facebook. You've added a service or app to put your blog posts onto your walls. You write Wall posts as well (always with a link back to your site, of course) and you're doing all that you can to get visitors to where you can really engage them.
Actually, not so much.
The problem with lots of different services from different vendors is that you end up with a set of piecemeal solutions that don't interact with each other, and which don't complement each other. They look after themselves, but you end up missing the big picture. The whole should be greater than the sum of the parts, and all too often it isn't - and if those apps are free, the price may be "right" but what are you missing out on?
Get a Social Marketing Solution, not (yet another) App
What you want is a service that will not only add value to your Facebook interactions, but understands that your Facebook Pages are part of your online marketing whole, using each Facebook interaction, app or post as an opportunity to grow your list and redirect visitors back to your site.
A single service email and social marketing solution that integrates comprehensively with Facebook should:
- Drive traffic from Facebook to your site.
- Have Facebook help you grow your email list, not compete with it.
- Enable the Facebook "Like" from your web pages and your email content.
- Posts to Facebook for you and invites the reader to join your list when it does.
- Gives you metrics to compare email, Facebook and Twitter interactions.
Ideally, your solution should do all of this automatically, with minimal care and feeding from you on an ongoing basis (and support for when you need it too).
Unify and integrate all your Facebook and other social media marketing using a solution that shares this vision of comprehensive integration, automation and analytics to make the most of all your online marketing activities.
Phil Hollows is the Founder and CEO of FeedBlitz, the premium FeedBurner alternative for RSS statistics, email and social media marketing. FeedBlitz delivers on Phil's vision of integrated Facebook marketing, as outlined in this blog post on FeedBlitz News. Follow Phil on Twitter at @phollows