Read this blog entry and others with a project management focus at the UCSC Extension, Silicon Valley – The Art of Project Management Blog.
My company built its first Facebook fan page for a client (Intuit) over 2 years ago. It was clear to them that they could use Facebook to reach their customers for marketing purposes. Back then, not many brands were doing that very well. Fast forward to today and just about every major brand (and many businesses) has a Facebook fan page.
For marketers, the opportunity to find their best customers and prospects while they are socializing online is a no-brainer. Unfortunately, most brands and companies treat Facebook like another marketing channel and use it present product news, company news, offers, and discounts. In short, they use the exact same messages on email, their website, and in their offline media. I think most brands are quickly finding that this is not very interesting to most of their fans (or non-fans) and won’t serve to increase the number of fans. The more savvy marketers, offer exclusive content like contests, video, or the opportunity to talk to company executives in real-time.
The most savvy companies use Facebook for customer service, to recruit future employees, and even to get ideas on how to improve their future products and services. Intuit discovered that they were getting a significant amount of traffic to their Facebook page vs. their very nice careers website. In response, they asked us to build a more interactive, customized Facebook experience. The result is a Intuit Careers Facebook page that makes a much better impression to prospective employees – for many, their crucial first impression.
Intuit also added customer service tabs to many of their Facebook pages because so many of their customers are active on Facebook. Every time there was service maintenance, they would receive multiple Wall Posts. The easy solution was to build another Facebook tab where they can post planned service maintenance or other product alerts. This keeps that rather uninteresting and unproductive conversation off their walls.
I see the future Facebook pages as short cut access to the most customer-facing parts of an organization. Facebook for businesses started off as a marketing tool, but is quickly becoming a tool for customer service, careers, investor relations, and product organizations as well. How does your organization use Facebook?