When planning your annual or quarterly social media marketing campaigns the temptation is always there to run a campaign that offers a ‘big ticket’ item as a prize. After all, it makes sense that the bigger the prize on offer the more traction your campaign will gain and the bigger splash it will create. Who wouldn’t want that?
You generate a lot of attention, put your brand in front of a lot of new eyeballs and accrue a few more page likes or followers in the process.
Don’t get me wrong ‘big splash’ campaigns by nature create a big impact. But let’s just take one step back and analyse that impact. Whenever a big prize is on offer you are guaranteed to attract attention of one particular type of social media user; the comper.
Every social media marketer is aware of them and some of them even utilise them. By definition a ‘comper’ is someone who sets up social accounts purely for the purpose of entering competitions. The army of compers currently active on social media will like your page in exchange for regular competitions and those ‘big ticket’ prizes. As a result your Facebook page gains thousands of shiny new fans (looks good to the boss), and yet it is safe to say that the majority of them are only there for the competitions.
These ‘fans’ have no personal investment in the brand, they have no interest in your products or services and they don’t care about the message you are trying to deliver, unless it has the word ‘WIN’ in it. They offer no value.
So now what?
The water settles. The attention goes away, the conversations die down and your reach and engagement metrics return to their normal position as less than breathtaking until the next quarter (or year) comes round. It creates a lot of customer interest but for a very short period of time then in tapers off.
You have a Facebook brand page with tens of thousands of likes, yet the only engagement (likes, shares and comments) your Page receives is when you are running a competition.
Frequent, Sustainable Conversations
So how exactly do you grow a high quality fan base and keep people talking about your brand all year around? Well, aside from creating kick-ass day-to-day content (which should be a given) you take a longer view when it comes to your marketing campaigns. Wouldn’t it be better to create a marketing strategy where there are smaller prizes, events and giveaways as well and promotions spread over the course of the year? Instead of running that ‘big ticket’ campaign with the flashy prize, transfer that same budget into smaller scale campaigns and increase the frequency.
Swap that ‘big splash’ for constant ripples and keep your brand front of mind and ahead of the competition. By running regular, smaller campaigns you can tailor promotions to the needs and wants of your fans (or potential fans) to create frequent, sustainable conversations about your brand that will attract a higher quality fan who is more likely to invest and interact with your brand. This is the big splash theory.
Try not to completely disregard compers though. Their shares and retweets can deliver hundreds and even thousands of brand mentions on Twitter which not only increases brand exposure but boosts your search engine rankings in the process. The trick is to find the balance between competition and content-led marketing, between the measurable growth that will keep the people at head office happy and the conversations that build brand affinity and trust on your social platforms.
Why settle for 15 minutes of fame when you can become a real social media rockstar?
Over to you
What do you think? How do you keep your brand in the spotlight?