The Facebook as a new marketing tool has utter dominance and global reach. According to FB’s published statistics there are 500 million users who login every day, engaging for an aggregate 700 billion minutes per month. The social networking site has amassed over 900 million pages, groups, events, community pages. Users generate upwards of 30 billion monthly web links, new stories, notes, photo albums and other content blocks. Two hundred and fifty millions on- the -go mobile users currently access FB through their cell phones, iPods’ and other devices.
More than a million entrepreneurs and developers from 190 countries have created more than half a billion applications. Since social plugging launched in April 2010, an average of 10,000 new websites integrate with FB every day. More than 2.5 million websites have integrated with FB.
The social network was founded by a group of four Harvard students led by Mark Zuckerber, a computer science student and brilliant hacker. Zuckerberg and cofounders Dustin Moskovitz, Chris Hughes, and Edwards Saverin launched Facebook (known then as the FB) in Feb 2004 from the Harvard dorm room.
The upstart social network celebrated reaching the one-million active user mark in December-incredibly, less than one year after launch. It was clear that the FB revolution was now seriously underway. By Dec 2005, the user base had expanded by an astonishing 500% million active users. FB and Microsoft entered into a strategic alliance to serve banner advertisements. Thus the user base had expanded internationally to 12 million people.
In the six and half years its inception, FB has grown from the playfully mischievous activities of a data-scraping dorm-room IT prankster to become the global social media gold standard. Mark Zukerberg is both revered and reviled and according to his July 2010 profile in Forbes Magazine has the worth of about $6.9 billion. His hard driven vision for social product, design servicer core technology development, human nature and open source infrastructure is remarkable.
ISME’s rendezvous with FB as a marketing tool:
ISME set an attainable Key Performance Indicators (KPI) of targeting the crowd of youngsters in the age bracket of 18 to 20. The objective was certainly to create awareness about the institution at the peak time of admissions.
As all of us are aware of the fact, that today’s millennial generation is hooked on the FB pages consistently and continuously there was a wide chance of penetrating into their territories without any hiccups.
Defining KPI: It was the role of FB Manager to use the branding techniques to create an appeal among the audience. The model which we applied was from the concept of COMMUNICATION, “The AIDA Technique”
· ATTRACT THE AUDIENCE
· CREATE THE INTEREST
· INVOKE DESIRE
· TO TAKE ACTION
Attractingthe audience or in other words seeding tomorrow’s conversion today. Here are a couple of FB ads tactics we did to achieve the KPI’s. We made the page attractive by posting pictures of the campus/classrooms/cafeteria. We also introduced interesting posts on campus activities. For instance the student activities, guest lectures, industry visits, quiz, management glossary, online links for improving English and the like were also posted across.
The objective was to display the world-class infrastructure and to create an appealing effect of the sprawling campus to the audience.
The second aspect of interest from the model was basically to create curiosity and inclination towards ISME. Keeping this in mind posts relating to alumni wedding/informal images depicting camaraderie, fun quotient, celebrations at the campus, DJ nights were displayed. The students were also tagged simultaneously. Apart from this the most interesting activity was to post corporate achievements by the alumni, awards won in the corporate life/ motivational posts with a solid tag line, ISME in media etc. There were also posts on the latest happening in the management circle, creative and heartwarming videos with strong messages posted across and posts on budding entrepreneurs.
The third component of the model refers to desire- which was seen in the drastic and tremendous clicks on the LIKE button. Because when we started the campaign we had merely 500 likes currently we have 30,088 likes which is directly correlating to the awareness and popularity created within a span of three months. The desire to join a particular organization can be fuelled if there is something extraordinary and special. ISME Facebook had introduced a fifty special post titled “Why ISME is different and better series.” These posts captured the benchmarked aspects of the institute like the cut-above-the rest Faculty, cutting edge academics, holistic personality development and many more reasons. All the posts had images to substantiate the content, meaning photographs based on events thus, synchronizing the punch line. Subsequently the alumni and the current students were also respectively tagged, thus creating a genuine approach.
Last but not the least the action component of the model is the intangible goodwill created and the outcome which can be measured only at a later stage. However, the ripple effect is felt in the interaction of the prospective candidates who come for the interviews. Many of them have explicitly described about ISME’s active FB page and had also mentioned that they are aware of the campus activities.
The usage of language is worth mentioning in this context the focus was to use crisp adjectives in a subtle manner. The emphasis was on minimal text which was strong enough to send the message to the target audience. Thus all the posts ensured that the text and photographs were in sync and the event story board very alluring to the youth.
In a nutshell working on this magical marketing tool was indeed a huge learning. The creative side of the brain got tickled and also the use of technology got acclimatized. Thus FB is certainly the Holy Grail at this point in time. Be it Customer service, Crisis management, Community relations, Internal relations, Investors relations or Media relations- it is there at your fingertips.