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Just about every brand has a Facebook page, but these brands make expert use of the platform
Brands are more or less expected to have a Facebook presence these days, so if you're running your own business, Facebook should be a big part of your marketing efforts.
But how do you do Facebook marketing effectively? First, you take a hint from the companies doing it best.
1. Red Bull
Followers: 48.2 million
The first thing we noticed about Red Bull is that they've set up their page as a media company rather than a business or brand. That's a very strategic move. The company has positioned its brand to be synonymous with extreme sports, and it pretty much owns that market.
The decision to brand themselves a media company shows on their Facebook page. The page is all about showcasing content, with nary a mention of the actual product. They manage to post five or six engaging videos per day, along with links to written content. For Red Bull, Facebook is all about branding instead of selling.
Threadless has built its entire business on user-generated content. Users submit designs which are voted on over a 10-day period by other users. The highest rated designs are put into production by Threadless (in the form of t-shirts, hoodies, phone cases, etc.) and the artist receives payment for sales.
It's no wonder, then, that the company's Facebook page does a great job at highlighting user-generated content. From its cover image to all its posts, user-generated designs are showcased, and the original artists are always credited. Threadless also uses its Facebook to post design challenges and link to its blog content.
Oreo does a great job at its primary objective: making you crave Oreos. It uses videos and motion graphics to showcase its product, and provides recipes that will have you running for the cookie aisle.
That's all well and good, but Oreos kinda sell themselves. What really earns Oreo a spot on our list is its willingness to engage with its audience, even when they ask difficult questions, like in the post below:
Oreo's social media team could have easily ignored this, but chose to engage with it instead and point the user to more information. That's audience engagement done well.
4. National Geographic
Followers: 45.5 million
National Geographic only attempts to do one thing with their Facebook page: showcase incredible content. The company regularly posts eye-popping videos, beautiful photos and links to engaging written content.
National Geographic doesn't attempt to do anything fancy or viral with their Facebook engagement. They know they have great, compelling content, and they put it front and center.
Followers: 35.6 million
Starbucks does some clever things with its page's tabs, including a link to open jobs, a link to its Pinterest account and a global store finder.
But a couple factors make Starbucks' Facebook presence stand out. One is its unabashed support for socially progressive causes. It can be easy for big brands to play it safe and remain apolitical, but Starbucks had embedded its ideology into its brand.
The other detail that sets Starbucks' Facebook presence apart is its prompt engagement with its audience. The brand regularly replies to comments and isn't afraid to engage with dissatisfied customers.
Nutella's Facebook team lives by the old journalism adage of "show, don't tell." Instead of just talking up their brand, they show Nutella in use. They showcase interesting recipes and spread the addictive hazelnut goo on food items you'd never dreamt of.
Nutella also does a great job with video content, showcasing its product in action. Moreover there are frequent contests and promotions run through the brand's Facebook page. And while they don't engage users as often as some brands, they're quick to reply to any disgruntled customers.
Followers: 2.35 million
Zappos grabs our attention for their incredible customer service. The brand regularly interacts with its audience on Facebook, and sometimes just engages in casual conversation. But when users have a question or a problem, Zappos goes above and beyond to address it.
Social media is a great tool for customer service, and Zappos utilizes it perfectly. It also gets points for including a "Shop Now" CTA on its page, and a link in its tabs listing career opportunities with the company. Add to that the fact that the brand beautifully showcases its products and regularly engages with social justice content, and Zappos is a great example of Facebook marketing done well.