I’ve posted before on how Facebook can be used to promote a cause or campaign through greater engagement, advertizing, and gaming the Facebook heuristic for newpost visibility. I’d like to talk about a few ideas I have (and am using) to move Facebook Likes to the next stage, by encouraging organization memberships, donations, or volunteering.
1) Personalized messaging. By tracking (with a reasonable database) when people engage with your page through Likes, Comments, and Shares, you can proactively message them to move them on to donations, memberships, and volunteering. This requires some volunteer support, but has the advantage of allowing very personalized messages and a real, listening human being on the other end of the conversation. A few hours a week for a page with 800 or so active users is not that challenging.
2) I’ve talked before about staying on message during a campaign. This doesn’t mean that you can’t push different ways to engage over time. These are largely orthogonal to the issue of the day (or week). For instance, regardless of whether you’re discussing poverty or emergency services, you can do a membership push on Monday, and endorsement push on Tuesday, a donation push on Wednesday, and a volunteer push on Thursday. Each of these can easily be tailored to the topic of the day. (“Feel strongly about this issue? Volunteer!”)
3) Community Outreach. Your Likes represent people from a variety of communities. It’s possible to tailor your messages to engage specific communities and ask people to share within their communities. There are a variety of utilities out there that can assist with tracking when your cause or candidate is mentioned on social media, so you can track how much traction you get on each topic with your followers. This allows you to move forward in two ways. First, you can engage people with similar interests by posting directly to the groups and communities where your audience has already posted (and others like them). Second, and more excitingly, you can tailor your future communications, especially through personal methods such as email, to account for the specific interests of your audience. Use different headers or different bodies for each group, tailoring your message to improve the success of your ask.
Each of these ideas is currently in practice in some form or other on campaigns I’m working with, but it’s too soon to evaluate their success. I’ll keep you posted.