From its humble beginnings to becoming the largest social media network, Facebook has taken the world by storm. When it first launched in 2004, it was only available to college students but in just a few short years Facebook became available to everyone. Since then, businesses have been trying to figure out just exactly how to utilize Facebook to reach their target market.
Why is Facebook so valuable? Facebook is one of the most powerful marketing tools for companies and marketers to connect with potential customers and it is inexpensive compared to other advertising. Facebook reaches 58% of people 18 and older. Of those people online using Facebook, 70% said they check the site at least once a day and 45% said they log into Facebook multiple times a day (Duggen, 2015).
Brands around the world are jumping on board with social media and typically start by creating a Facebook account. Facebook allows organizations to build a community which will then turn into closed business. A successful page uses a combination of posts highlighting the attractiveness of the products or services, the brand’s personality and customer service. Ultimately, businesses use Facebook as a way to attract new customers and build brand loyalty with current customers.
With so many companies online there are of course thousands of success stories. Most of what we read online revolves around the big brands and focus less on the small businesses. Divas SnowGear is one of these small startup businesses that may have struggled to grow without Facebook’s help.
The company began in 2010 by Wendy Gavinski who was frustrated with the lack of feminine clothes for snowmobiling. She quickly found it difficult to reach her niche market in a cost effective way. With Facebook, Divas SnowGear was able to target women by region who are interested in snowmobiling.
Today, the Facebook page has 84 thousand likes from consumers and industry trade organizations. They have added a Facebook web store to make it easier for consumers to buy their clothing. The posts showcase upcoming sales, contests, photo shoots and share exciting news when the brand is featured by high-profile publications. In addition to Facebook, the company is engaged in a variety of other social media platforms including Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn and they even maintain a blog. Clearly, they have fully embraced the power of social media
One of Divas SnowGear’s downfalls is it is being used much like a sales channel only by promoting sales and just showcasing its products. “The key to successful use of Facebook for businesses lies in your ability to engage followers, listen to them and to balance the content you are publishing” (Robshaw-Bryan,2013). Divas SnowGear needs to focus on adding engaging and valuable content for their fans.
Diva SnowGear is not the only business that struggles with developing engaging content for social media use. A few photos, consistent posting, and running contests will not only encourage current fans to participate online but it will bring new people in through social sharing.
Duggen, M., Ellison, N., Lampe, C., Lenhart, A., Madden, M. (2015). Social Media Update 2014. Retrieved on May 4, 2015 from http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/01/09/social-media-update-2014/
Gavinski, W. (2014). Finding the Right Fit For My Business. Retrieved on May 4, 2015 from https://www.facebookstories.com/stories/93535/
Robshaw-Bryan, S. (2013). Facebook: Understanding the Business Benefits. Retrieved on May 4, 2015 from http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/facebook-understanding-business-benefits