Are You Taking Advantage of this HUGE Opportunity on Facebook?

Yesterday was my birthday.  And I was completely overwhelmed with all the incredible messages I received on Facebook from so many folks. (Thank you!)  And I got to thinking about how remembering something like a customer’s birthday can be a wonderful tool for making another special connection with them.  I know I received some coupons in the mail from local restaurants, offering me a discount on my birthday, and a big happy birthday message.  A little thing, but it made me feel good.  How can you put this to work for your business?

Are you connecting with all your customers on Facebook?  You should be.  It will be a wonderful resource for information about that customer, so you can start a relevant conversation that may lead to new business.  Without a single status update related to your business, you can reach out personally to them when the opportunity arises (either through Facebook or a personal contact), and provide the right offer or assistance at just the right time.

Be sure that you’re taking advantage of the information Facebook gives to you, and that you’re paying attention to what your customers post (the best way to do this is through a customer friend list….this post shows you step by step how to set one up.)  Then think about the best way to contact each customer.  It might be through a card in the mail.  It might be a phone call.  It might be an email.

Of course, systems can help you with this.  Set up a system like Send Out Cards so that you can send print birthday greeting cards (perhaps with a discount) through the mail, triggered by birthdays you find in Facebook.  (Facebook emails you to tell you whose birthday is coming up each week.)  Have specific types of contacts you do for specific events.  For example, when you see a customer who has a special event coming up, that may trigger a phone call contact.  A birthday is a card contact.  Etc.  That way you don’t waste time trying to decide HOW to contact someone.

You have access to more information about people now than probably any other point in history.  Be sure that you are taking advantage of this to offer the best personalized service possible.  Retail giants can’t connect with people individually like this.  They don’t have the capacity.  But YOU CAN.  So take advantage of this huge differentiator, and build a reputation for your business of service and care.  It will make all the difference.

Your thoughts?

7 Responses to Are You Taking Advantage of this HUGE Opportunity on Facebook?
  1. Rae
    December 22, 2010 | 7:59 am

    A few years ago I discovered birthdayalarm.com. They provide a link, which I share with customers on my website. My customers can enter their birthdays (with or without the year). I am alerted when Cathy Customer’s birthday is added, but that’s not the amazing part. One week before Cathy Customer’s birthday I get an email reminder. I get another the day before her birthday. This gives me plenty of time to send a card via USPS if I like.

    What I usually do is send an email the day before her birthday wishing her a happy birthday and offering a discount on anything she buys for the next month. Some customers take advantage of the discount, but many more have expressed thanks for remembering their birthdays.

    • Jennifer Fong
      December 22, 2010 | 9:03 am

      Great strategy! Thanks for sharing the site Rae!

  2. NooraK
    December 21, 2010 | 1:13 pm

    I have taken advantage of my email service to set up what they call an Autoresponder. It is set up to automatically send an email to my contacts on their birthday with a coupon for a discount. I’ve gone through all of my contacts and made note of as many birthdays as I could, including ones I could find on Facebook.

    • Jennifer Fong
      December 22, 2010 | 9:04 am

      Great idea Noora!

  3. Darren Spruyt
    December 21, 2010 | 10:05 am

    Hey Jen! Dint know it was your birthday yesterday! Happy belated 🙂 You’re one year wiser!

    Facebook is definitely changing the way we do things, interact and do our business. The great thing about Facebook is that there’s actually an “Address book” so you can contact these people when it’s their birthdays! If someone does put their number, it means they are giving you permission to call them.

    So you can call them when its their birthdays and give them your blessings! Definitely amazing stuff we’re going with Facebook! This post just reminded me how much easier it is for us to create a relationship with people we know. Thanks Jen!

    Regards,
    Darren Spruyt

    • Jennifer Fong
      December 21, 2010 | 10:37 am

      I would be careful using the phone number on Facebook if you haven’t been given it another way. Most of the people I know are not aware their phone number is available to others. That could be a bit off-putting if they don’t know you well. Food for thought.

      And thanks for your comments as always!

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