Facebook recently rolled out a new feature that allows users to attach a photo when they’re commenting on a status update. Now, instead of just telling, users can show how they’re feeling using a quick snapshot. This update is significant for the way it changes interactions with friends and fans on a particular post. It also begs the question, how can businesses take advantage of this new feature?
Here are four kinds of status updates that encourage photo comments:
1. Asking Fans to Share Photos of Themselves Engaging with Your Brand/Product
The main reason businesses are on Facebook is to engage with existing and potential customers. Nothing feels better than having happy customers share their positive experiences with their friends and your fans. With the new photo comment feature, you can ask your fans to post a photo of themselves engaging with your brand.
For example, if you’re a restaurant owner you can ask fans to post a picture of their favorite dish. A store can suggest fans post images of them shopping or showing off their favorite product on your shelves. If you’re a tech or service company, ask your fans to submit photos of how they’re using your product or enjoying your service (“Look how clean my carpet is now that ACME Carpet Cleaning came by!”). A simple photo from a fan can add a lot of “Social Proof” to your Facebook page, as well as garner more engagement from other Fans.
2. Asking Fans to Share Images of Useful Resources
Here at ShortStack, we love infographics. We find them educational and so do our fans. Using the new commenting feature, you could ask fans to share an image of an infographic that they’ve seen recently that they’ve liked. For example, you could say, “We’re big fans of infographics, do you have a favorite? Comment below with an image.” Asking fans to share useful resources can work for other business types as well. For example, if you’re a realtor, decorator or home- improvement company, ask fans to share before and after pictures of their homes, upgrades, or their favorite homes that are on the market. If you’re an artist or photographer, ask fans to share their favorite pieces of art or a recent photo.
The opportunities are almost endless. Just think of things that are relevant to your business and would potentially generate more comments, likes and shares from your fans.
3. Asking Fans to Share Images from an Event
Does your company plan or host events? Or maybe you just hosted a large sale or party that included your customers. Asking fans to share their photos from an event of yours that they attended is an easy way to get your fans talking to you and each other on Facebook. On an average day more than 300 million photos are uploaded to Facebook so it’s obvious that people love sharing their experiences. Highlighting events, parties and gatherings is a fun way to reflect and engage with your fans.
If your company is not one that hosts events you can still ask your fans to share images of seasonal or timely events. Around the holidays, encourage fans to share what they got for Christmas, Hanukkah, etc. or where they’re spending the New Year’s holiday.
4. Asking Fans How They’re Spending Their Day
We’ve all heard the 70/20/10 rule: 70 percent of your Facebook posts should be adding value and brand building, 20 percent should be sharing others’ posts and ideas, and 10 percent should be promoting yourself or your business. Photo comments are an easy way to share other people’s posts and ideas to round out that 20 percent. Ask your fans a simple question: “How are you today? Send us a photo of what you’re up to!”
Every Friday the whole ShortStack crew goes to lunch together. Most of the time we share a photo on Facebook of our weekly lunch. The image already gets an enthusiastic response because our fans enjoy seeing a glimpse of the people behind the pancakes, but now we can ask our fans to share images of their “crew” as well.
When you respond to the comments and images from your fans, be mindful of opportunities to get some “ROI” and positive PR from the thread. For example, let’s say I was a day spa owner and posed the question “How’s your day going?” If a mother of triplets posted a pic of three crying kids, that might be a good time to mention my sale or coupon. Heck, I might feel so bad that I just offer her a free spa day! Ideally it would increase awareness of my sale or coupon, and it would be a nice gesture to an active fan and customer.
The new photo comments feature is a great tool for businesses to engage and interact with your users. Get creative and have fun with the photos you ask your fans to share, just make sure you ask them to keep it appropriate. Also try and respond to every comment you receive and tag the person in the comment so your comments and shares have a further reach on Facebook.