It seems like every organization imaginable has a Facebook fan page these days, but how many of these pages are effectively utilized? According to Ragan.com’s Paul Sutton many of these pages fall flat. Here are five common reasons why:
1. The fan page hides fan posts
The point of an organization’s social media account is to facilitate engagement with publics. A Facebook fan page that only allows its own posts to be displayed on its page is not using Facebook effectively. Organizations should promote comments, feedback and discussion on fan page walls.
2. Lack of customization
Facebook allows organizations to customize fan pages in a variety of ways. Organizations that take advantage of apps to import Twitter feeds, videos, and ask questions are making the most of their pages.
3. Unused tabs
Facebook fan pages generally display default tabs such as Info, Discussions, Event, and Photos along the side of the page. Sutton recommends that organizations remove unused or underutilized tabs to clean up the look of the page.
4. Content is not social
Many organizations use fan pages solely to “push” information at fans while ignoring opportunities to engage in two way social interaction. Posts and polls that are aimed at opening up a dialogue with fans will make the largest impression and boost page activity.
5. Poor post timing
Some fan pages are sparse on content while others post way too much. Sutton recommends at least one or two updates per day at varied times.
As Director of Social Media for Temple University’s Public Relations Student Society of America, I am in charge of maintaining the Temple University PRSSA fan page. So how does our fan page stack up against Sutton’s criteria and what are some improvements that can be made?
1. Temple’s PRSSA fan page does allow fans to post on the wall, maximizing engagement opportunities in this category.
2. The PRSSA fan page suffers from a lack of customization. It does not import posts from Twitter and I have yet to use the poll feature. Creating a poll would be a great way to have fans vote on future guest speakers and help decide on upcoming events. One poll I intend to create will ask fans to vote on their favorite guest speaker from the semester.
3. PRSSA makes use of the Info, Events and Photos tabs. Hiding the unused discussion tab would help to clean the page up.
4. The content I post on the PRSSA fan page could definitely be more social. Many times posts inform fans of meeting times or upcoming events. Specific posts soliciting member interaction would increase traffic and benefit the page immensely.
5. Temple PRSSA posted 11 times in March. While this is more than once a week, increased posting would attract more fans and might help to better engage existing fans.
In summary, the Temple University PRSSA Facebook fan page does a lot of things right but also has room for improvement. What do you think about the suggestions for increase fan page traction? Do you have any ideas to improve Temple University PRSSA’s fan page?
This guest blog was written by PRowl Public Relations staff member Doug Bennett.