Building a community and boosting brand-customer relationships are both key parts of modern day marketing, and with consumers spending more time than ever online - on social media in particular - their expectations are constantly evolving. They want to feel a sense of proximity and connectedness with the businesses whose products and services they use, through down-to-earth, friendly conversations and real human interactions, which break down barriers and increase brand love.
With a staggering 44.84 million users in the UK, Facebook remains the most popular and most well-known social networking platform in the country, making it an essential tool for businesses to utilise, not only for customer service, but for growing their communities. In particular, the Groups feature on Facebook (also known as your Community Page) is the perfect place for your brand’s followers and fans to voice their opinions, share photos and videos, and discuss all the latest news regarding your business. Plus, with the option to make your Community Page private, you’re able to control and manage the content that gets posted, whilst monitoring who your most active followers are.
This survey from KPMG shows that customers are loyal to brands who treat them well and allow them to establish emotional connections. 86% say they would recommend a company to friends and family, and 66% say they’re likely to write a positive online review after a good experience. Your Facebook Community Page is an excellent space to build and nurture these relationships, as it gives you the chance to offer a personal network between you and your customers.
Engaging directly with your community on this level, and providing them with a place to share their thoughts, also shows that your business cares and wants to hear what its users have to say - instead of leaving them in the dark once their transactions have been finalised.
Although your Community Page is predominantly the place for your customers to take centre stage, it can also be a valuable tool for you to share announcements and updates about your brand - as long as you don’t post so often that you drown out the voices of your fans. New product launches, upcoming events and recent recruits to your team are just a few examples of things you might want to reveal to your group.
Additionally, you can use your Community Page to give exclusive offers and discounts to members. This can be especially exciting if the group is private, as your customers will love getting opportunities to access rare deals knowing they they're only available to a select few. On a similar note, you can incentivise future purchases by giving your community sneak previews and hints of forthcoming products and campaigns.
Your Facebook Group is an ideal platform for gathering feedback and honest reviews of your product or service. Here, your customers will share valuable comments and realistic observations, giving you key insights into any aspects of your brand that might need to be improved. Similarly, they can ask other members for advice and discuss your product amongst themselves, providing you with a bird’s eye view of how your brand is perceived by the general public.
Your Community Page isn't just a place for criticisms and queries - it's also a positive space for you to find out what's working well, and discover which parts of your brand are most loved by your customers.
Alongside this is the opportunity to collect User Generated Content, or UGC - photos, videos and reviews submitted to the page by your fans, which, with their permission, can later be repurposed into your own social media content or on your website.
According to this report from Microsoft, a huge 96% of worldwide consumers say that customer service is an important influential factor when choosing which brands to purchase from, meaning it’s essential for your business to be offering it at a high standard. Your Community Page on Facebook can be a powerful extension of this.
Members of the group can voice any issues that your support team may not have been able to address yet, or consult other users about their concerns. Additionally, they may see the Community Page as a more personal, laid-back platform on which to request help, compared with more formal or overcomplicated customer service systems which are disconnected from the familiarity of social media.