By: Elizabeth Coffey, Marketing G2 Digital Marketing Specialist
With Facebook set to sink publisher posts in the newsfeed with its newly announced algorithm, many media marketing professionals and the publishing companies that employ them are looking for alternative ways to drive customer engagement and subscriber loyalty.
While some are still sour on Facebook and platforms in general, it would be a mistake to ignore something with as much scale and influence as this social media company. Traditional “Pages” may not work anymore but “Groups” are still a great way to create a community around your many different publication brands.
Use the tips and tricks below to build subscriber loyalty around your publications:
- Communication is key – Your reporters and editors must get comfortable with communicating directly with readers in a more substantial way than they’re used to on Twitter. Readers appreciate being able to comment and get answers to their questions directly from the news team they trust. Convince your newsroom staffers to contribute regularly to the group to create a healthy back and forth between your publication and its engaged readers.
- Collaborate – Make sure your newsroom and marketing teams are working together towards the same goal; to make your subscribers’ experience better. The trick to getting everybody onboard with the initiative is to make obtaining subscriptions and future sustainability the central focus of your corporate culture.
- Embrace transparency – Don’t fear being corrected by your community of engaged readers, it’s actually an opportunity to build trust. You want your readers to know that you're human, that sometimes you make mistakes, and when you do you’ll own up to them and issue a correction. Let your group members see the process of making the news from start to finish. Knowing how the news is made, establishes trust and a connection with your journalists, making subscribers continue to want to pay for your content.
- Get feedback – Facebook Groups are a great way to garner feedback on your stories and to gage how well your publication is serving its audience. Embrace this feedback and use it to influence future stories.
- Broaden your definition of news - Encourage your group members to share positive stories of their own lives. Pictures of graduations, musings on the local state fair, and more can help keep you connected to your subscribers while fostering a sense of community.
- Consider creating community subsets - It may be beneficial, if your demographics span many different kinds of people, to create several Facebook Groups based on the subsets of your collective audience.
How is your publication using Facebook Groups?
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