Why Facebook Is Still One of the Most Important Marketing Tools for Bridal Brands
This is the first installment in our social media marketing for bridal brands series.
Have you given up on your Facebook Page because of the recent changes which prioritize friends and family posts over businesses’? If so, please read on. I will explain why despite the significant drop in organic reach, you should not, as a business, abandon your Facebook presence.
Let’s start with a few facts about Facebook you may have already heard that are worth repeating: 1) Facebook has over two billion users around the world - everyone you know, whether they love or hate Facebook, has a Facebook account; 2) Facebook has a lot, and I mean A LOT, of information on its users, including personal interests, work information, pages they follow, and relationship status, to name a few; 3) Facebook owns Instagram, the platform bridal lines are loving these days (and for good reason); 4) besides friends and family posts, the content that is getting more distribution on Facebook includes videos and news articles - and really, the type of content that encourages people to reply with long comments and to share the content with their Facebook friends.
I will go into some detail about a couple of tools Facebook offers to businesses at no cost, but before that, I’d like to discuss the very basic reasons why I recommend bridal brands spend time updating their page with fresh content every week.
1. Facebook is one more way for people doing a search about weddings or bridal fashion to find you.
While it’s not meant to replace your website, someone doing a search for bridal might just find your page. If you’re not posting fresh content, your visitor will notice, and that will turn them off. Having fresh content, on the other hand, will encourage interaction with your page and can lead to a follow, website page visit, and a sale.
2. Facebook helps you spread awareness about your trunk shows or any other events through Facebook Events.
People who see or discover your event can share it with friends, attendees can see a map of the location, and you can cross promote with the store hosting your trunk show, for example, allowing their audiences to discover your event and Facebook page--and this is just the free option. You can also boost or promote your event to reach more people.
3. Using Facebook Ratings and Reviews can help build trust.
We already know how important ‘word of mouth’ is for businesses - a fact that is really no different in bridal. If you add reviews from your bridal retailers and/or brides to your Facebook page, you’ll increase your audience’s trust, educate your prospective customers about your brand, and help them choose you over another bridal brand.
On that note, here are some tips you’ll find useful:
- Rather than posting every day like you do on Instagram, aim to post just a few times a week, but post your best content in a way that educates your audience about your line. The key is to provide useful information in an interesting way. I would make Facebook my platform of choice for posting content that will resonate with prospective retailers while still keeping brides in mind.
- Make Facebook your video platform if you are not ready to establish a presence on YouTube. Create videos that contain beautiful visuals, that tell a compelling story, and that prompt your audience to comment and share. Plus, if you achieve high engagement, this is a video you can then use to do a paid promotion to, say, create brand awareness. If the video performed well organically, chances are it will continue to perform well with new audiences through a paid ad.
- Start learning about Facebook Ads (or hire an expert), and begin advertising as soon as possible. We live in a saturated social media world and the sooner you realize you need to invest in paid ads, the stronger your position will be as ad costs continue to rise. Don’t forget that Facebook owns Instagram, which makes it even more important for Instagram-loving bridal brands to learn the ins and outs of advertising through Facebook.
To sum up: make sure you’re using Facebook Events to add all of your trunk shows, bridal markets, and any other special events you have going. Post fewer times a week but post your best content while educating your audience about your brand, and build trust by posting reviews. And don’t forget, try to post more video!
Next, the two Facebook tools you should definitely be using now!
The Facebook Pixel
This is a piece of code you (or your website developer) install on your website, which serves as an analytics tool to track website visits and actions taken by those visitors. The Facebook Pixel is hugely important because, as I’ve mentioned before, paid advertising will soon be a fact of business life, and the more information you have about your website visitors from the actions they take on your pages, the better your chances of converting those visitors to customers through targeted ads.
Not only will you be able to serve ads to your most interested website visitors but you can also create new audiences to serve ads to through Facebook’s Lookalike Audiences, or people who share the characteristics of your most engaged visitors. Pretty cool huh!
Messaging platforms are where customers are these days (Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and others). With decreasing email open rates, this is a new way to reach and stay in touch with existing and prospective customers. Facebook offers businesses a basic way to do this with their Messenger app, but the latest tool brands are using are messenger bots (they’re integrated with Facebook Messenger) which, when set up properly, allow brands to answer FAQs, book appointments, send reminders (think bridal market appointment scheduling and reminders!), and deliver updates, among other things.
The amazing thing about this is that you can collect information on people who interact with your Messenger bot (without having to ask them for it) to serve them ads later or just send quick relevant information about your brand. The opportunities for marketing, sales, and customer service are many and very exciting! Keep in mind that Facebook Messenger allows for this bot integration but bots are not a Facebook application.
I realize that for many of you this might be a lot of information to take in (and I’ve only really scratched the surface!). Hopefully, I’ve been able to persuade you not to give up on Facebook altogether. The one thing I want to reiterate is that Facebook has a wealth of information about its users, and this can certainly help you as a brand. While you might be tempted to focus your efforts solely on Instagram, it would be wiser to continue building your presence on Facebook. Don’t underestimate the opportunities this social media giant offers brands just because organic reach is down. Instead, take advantage of its free tools, and prepare your company for a future where paid advertising is a given.