By Lisa Arsenault, Head of Client Solutions
I am Generation Y. And apparently, that generally means I’m tech-savvy, family-centric, achievement-oriented, and crave attention. Don’t believe me? Check me out on Wikipedia. (Did I also mention that I’m team-oriented and gullible? Okay, I made that last part up but my generation does seem to think that Wikipedia is the new Encyclopedia Britannica).
While I mostly agree with the common traits associated with Gen Y, I do think we’re being grossly misrepresented by our classification. We’ve been called ‘Generation Next’ and the ‘Net Generation,’ but anyone with Internet access knows how much time we waste specifically on Facebook (though I’m still revolting against Pinterest – I really only need one time-suck in my life at a time). I check Facebook before I check the news, the traffic in the morning, and even my email. And I don’t even like Facebook! Like most, I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook. In fact, I love to hate Facebook.
Introducing Generation FB.
Tech-Savvy. Yeah, I can access Facebook on my laptop, tablet, iPhone, and smart TV. Doesn’t everyone?
Family-Centric. My grandparents didn’t call me last week to wish me a happy birthday. They posted on my timeline. I’ve watched my niece and nephew grow up via FB posts, picture, and videos – and I’ve ‘Liked’ them all.
Achievement-Oriented. I love to update my status to tell everyone how much more I’ve done with my life than they have.
Attention-Craving. Really, I’m posting about how amazing my life is secretly hoping that at least two of the popular girls from high school are FB stalking me wishing they could be friends with me. And when Starbucks screws up my double skinny half-whip latte, I just need a little sympathy.
Sounds harsh, right? Well, Advertisers, it’s about to get harsher.
Most of this article has been about me. And please stop to think about this, because Facebook is about me. Not you. Yes, I know I just changed my relationship status from single to engaged, but I really don’t need a wedding photographer yet – so please stop blasting me with ads. But if my best friend posts on my timeline to congratulate me and shares a few of her GORGEOUS wedding photos, now I’m looking for a wedding photographer.
I realize I’m probably not completely indicative of the norm since accessing Facebook is part of my job– but I think most of my fellow Generation FB’ers are with me on this one. We tend to ignore Marketplace ads. Ever wonder why the average CTR is lower than standard display? Again - because Facebook is about me, not you. I’m there to engage with my friends and family. To play games and share stories. So engage with me.
Ask me questions. Give me incentives to share. And leverage my engagement to your advantage by supplementing those organic interactions with Sponsored Stories at the right time with the right message. That way, you’re not telling me how great your product and services are directly, you’re letting me act as a conduit to share that information for you. It’s about bridging paid and earned media, the invaluable intersection at which you’ll start to take control of your Facebook campaigns and drive results.
I’m not saying that Marketplace ads aren’t without their purpose, but think about your presence on Facebook, what you’re trying to achieve in being there, and develop a STRATEGY to go after it.
Not sure where to start? How about here:
Don’t advertise on Facebook because you think you must or because your competitors are doing it. Get on Facebook with a real goal in mind. If you’re not sure what that means for your brand, there are plenty of partners out there who would ‘Like’ to help you figure it out.