Our client 34 Degrees is the maker of all-natural, wafer-thin crackers that everyone at GFM loves. Ok, we’ll admit it…we’re pretty much obsessed. From the inspiring recipes created by their very own chef to the gorgeous food photography 34 Degrees features on its packaging, website and social networks, the company has a delicious story to share day in and day out.
But with great content comes great responsibility—one shouldered daily by their tiny but dedicated team of eight. Jennifer Swift, sales and marketing coordinator, wears many social media hats in addition to her daily responsibilities of sales support, customer service, order processing and marketing. We still aren’t sure how she found the time to sit down with us to talk about 34 Degrees’ nimble approach to Facebook, but we’re sure grateful she did!
Q.) What role does Facebook play within 34 Degrees’ marketing and communications strategy?
Facebook is a platform that enables 34 Degrees to connect, share, listen and interact with our fans. In terms of our marketing and communications strategy, Facebook is a great customer service tool and it’s a marketing channel that has a lot of reach potential to share engaging content, spread awareness of our brand and, over time, develop brand loyalty.
Q.) The 34 Degrees team is small and nimble. How do you find the time to keep up with Facebook?
Providing great customer service is very important to us, so we always try to respond to our fans’ needs as soon as we can. We’re on Facebook all day to make sure that our fans’ comments, questions and ideas that they share with us on our page are answered as soon as possible. I highly recommend using resources, like Hootsuite and Conversocial, to keep up with what people are saying, posting or tweeting about one’s brand. These tools are incredibly useful because they aggregate your social media channels/feeds onto one dashboard.
Utilizing a social media calendar is a great way to plan out posts on a weekly basis to keep up with Facebook. We also work with our creative partners to produce inspiring and entertaining content for holidays, etc. a month in advance. Some days we don’t post content if we don’t have something worth sharing with our wonderful fans – that’s ok, too.
Q.) What has been your biggest success or successes on Facebook to date?
One of our biggest successes was growing from under 1,000 fans to more than 10,000 fans in less than a year!
Q.) What have your biggest challenges been utilizing Facebook as a brand?
One of our biggest challenges with utilizing Facebook as a small company is having the resources and time to create savvy campaigns, grow our fan base and provide engaging content for our existing fan base. As we continue to grow, so will our opportunity to develop our brand on Facebook and other social media channels. For now, we’ll remain committed to being customer-centric on our page and we’ll continue to test out different types of content and tactics to understand over time what is inspiring and engaging for our fans.
Q.) What tactics would you like to try on Facebook but haven’t had time to yet?
- Creating a thorough plan to test out “time of day” posts so we can better understand the best times of day to post for our fans
- Producing and testing content with different themes and purposes that would be featured on our page on a weekly basis
- Asking more questions to glean insights into our fans, what they like and why they follow 34 Degrees
- Testing “sponsored posts” and doing more Facebook ad testing to grow our reach and fan base
Q.) What brands on Facebook do you admire and why?
Chobani and Starbucks do an excellent job of consistently producing high-quality content that’s engaging, inspiring, funny and useful. ModCloth does an excellent job engaging with their fans through creative and collaborative campaigns they launch on Facebook, such as their “Make the Cut” series. Southwest Airlines is consistently producing cool, savvy content that’s engaging, useful and exciting. Most impressive is their extremely responsive and dedicated customer service team that addresses all comments, questions, etc. posted on their Facebook page. They take customer service to a whole new level.
Q.) How do you handle negative feedback or posts on Facebook? What would you recommend to a brand that is new to the platform with regard to handling crises and issues that crop up on social media?
We respond to all feedback or posts on Facebook – whether it’s positive or negative. Our advice to brands new to Facebook: never delete anything and always respond. Keep your communications as transparent as possible. Make sure that your response addresses the fan’s question or concern and have empathy. If necessary, suggest taking the conversation offline.
Q.) What other social media platforms is 34 Degrees on currently and how does your time spent there compare to Facebook?
We’re also on Pinterest; 34 Degrees is a highly visual brand so creating a presence on Pinterest was only natural. We definitely spend more time focusing on Facebook at the current moment; however, we have a lot of plans to further enhance and grow our presence on Pinterest to better engage with our followers and share ideas and useful content.