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3 Unconventional Ways to Engage Social Media Fans

Social Sonar - Saturday, December 29, 2012

We often talk about growing your fan base, but how can you  do this without running contests or paying for advertisements? You want to increase conversation, but you don't want to repeat the same tactics until they grow ineffective. Here are three outside-the-box ideas that can help you engage and grow your Facebook fan base.

  • 1. Crowdsource

  • Jeff Howe coined this phrase in 2006. He described the idea as "new pool of cheap labor: everyday people using their spare cycles to create content, solve problems, even do corporate R & D.”
Basically, crowdsourcing is asking your fans to offer suggestions on how to solve or address an issue. It’s a perfect method to obtain information from your target audience while making them feel they have a say in how your business is run. 

This might be simply asking them to vote on a specific product or category. For example, if you own a clothing store and have two dresses that are identical, but are different in color, you can ask your fans to vote between the two. Whichever color gets the most votes will be carried in the store. 

  • 2. Spotlight Your Employees

  • Your brand isn't just about products. It helps your followers build a relationshop with your business if they can get to know who is helping run it. Adding this personal touch brings approachability to your brand
  • Remember that good customer service can help create positive buzz. Who better to highlight than the people directly in contact with your customers? Acknowledging an employee can also help your brand get exposure to their friends and friends of friends. 
Try spotlighting an employee once a month, or even bi-monthly if your company is large. You may see resulting growth in your Facebook fan and Twitter followers. You'll likely also find your employees feel more appreciated.

  • 3. Reveal New Products or Services

  • Fans love to know the latest and greatest for your business. Showing off upcoming or unusual products or services can help give your company a boost in sales. You can start off by teasing your fans. "Tomorrow we'll show off something new and exciting. Come back at noon to see our newest addition."
You can show off a small portion of the product photo and say something like, "Once this photo gets to 50 likes, we’ll show you the rest." Get them excited for what's fresh. 

You don't have to be a big department store or name brand to use any of these innovative ideas. Whether your business is big or small, you need to engage and build a relationship with your fans.
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