I admit it. I’m still learning how to use Facebook Pages for B2B and still feel somewhat uncomfortable doing so.
I think part of the reason is because I’m over the line that divides people who feel really comfortable posting their entire lives online and the rest of us (of a certain age) who grew up keeping our personal lives private.
Plus, part of me still thinks, “Do people *really* care to know about the music I like or which restaurants I visit?”
However! This doesn’t mean I’m not up for learning new things, especially since, as one of my clients pointed out, the Facebook “Like” button has changed the world as we know it. And it just so happened that my personal life and learning new things came together two weeks ago when I realized that the Cap’n Crunch brand had become active on Facebook.
Before social media, you would have never known that I adore Cap’n Crunch cereal and have since I was a kid. When I moved out on my own, I used to it eat for dinner. (Why? No one could tell me not to.) After I had my son, I’d eat it as a mid-morning and late afternoon snack because I needed the sugar buzz.
I like Cap’n Crunch because it stays crunchy in milk. Yes, it does cut the roof of your mouth wicked bad, but it’s still so good. And you can’t just stop at one bowl, either.
I found the Cap’n Crunch Facebook page a few months ago and “Liked” it — but at the time the brand was pretty quiet.
That all changed a few weeks ago when somebody at Quaker Oats got a clue and gave the good Cap’n a voice. All of a sudden, amusing status updates from the brand began appearing in my feed – and surprisingly, the person behind the persona actually knows what he/she is doing. I tweeted on March 18 that I was amused that Cap’n Crunch was engaging fans on Facebook via March Madness and the Cap’n, who is obviously very smart, responded:
@diannahuff Thank you! I’m back ashore after years at sea and ready to take on Facebook and Twitter! Any tips for a newcomer?
Well, Cap’n, it is you who has actually taught me a few things about how B2B brands can use Facebook more effectively.
1. Develop a back story for why you’re now active.
Previous to March 14, the brand didn’t respond to people posting on the Facebook Page. This changed when an online rumor started that the cereal was to be discontinued. You can read the backstory at the CarltonJordon.com blog. Suffice to say, a spokesperson for Quaker told Ad Age:
Reports of Cap’n Crunch’s demise are greatly exaggerated. In fact, we just launched an official Facebook page for Cap’n Crunch. Now that our Cap’n Crunch brand is in the social-media space, our adult consumers can stay up to date on all things Cap’n Crunch.
Instead of simply appearing on Facebook, the good Cap’n explained that after being years at sea he had now returned. I liked this reasoning as it allowed the Cap’n to get his bearings now that he was back on land.
2. Ask people what they want from your Page.
ExactTarget has published eight fabulous reports on what people want from your brand via social media (Facebook and Twitter). The number one thing? Discounts and coupons! So imagine my delight when I saw this March 23 Facebook post from Cap’n Crunch and the 204 comments from Fans (plus 313 Likes) — many of whom want (you guessed it) coupons, discounts and free cereal.
I love seeing ExactTarget’s research in action, a brand asking peeps what they want, and a still wobbly-legged Cap’n looking for direction. Cute! Now Quaker Oats has to follow through.
3. Have some fun!
Because Facebook is a social networking platform for people and their family and friends, it’s a really great place to show your company or brand personality and have some fun — which is how you build community and engagement. You can also run contests that might not otherwise work on your blog, Website, or e-newsletter.
Given that Quaker started its social media campaign for Cap’n Crunch about two and half weeks ago, I’m really impressed that they came up with this contest: Fans can vote for their favorite Cap’n Crunch T-shirt design.
Fans will be able to find the shirts this summer on specially marked boxes of the cereal.
Quaker Oats has done a great job letting the person behind the Cap’n Crunch persona develop a personality and interact with Fans. I also like how the brand is responding to people on Twitter. Good job, Cap’n! May you always have a fair wind at your back and smooth sailing.