Facebook Microsite Syndrome. 10 Signs you have it today.

Surfing around this morning I found this interesting article: “Facebook Microsite Syndrome. 10 Signs you have it today.” After reading it I said this is exactly the mind-set of some people I know. So as I tribute to them I wanted to re-post this article so others can read – the article is from goingsocialnow.com.

I’ve noticed many Facebook pages afflicted with a disease. It is what I refer to as the Facebook Microsite Syndrome. Brands that are too nervous or maybe have agencies that don’t understand social media very well are treating Facebook pages as microsite canvasses. That’s wrong.

Microsites still have a place in the digital ecosystem. Arguably a much smaller place than they once did but they still matter. Whether it be campaign or topic specific, there are occasions when marketers need to drive consumers to specific pages on their websites that aggregate or showcase unique content. Sometimes they are needed to highlight a specific campaign too. Microsites still work. But Facebook isn’t built that way. And Facebook pages must not be used as static microsites.

You know you’re afflicted with the Facebook Microsite Syndrome when the following has happened:
1. Your Creative Director emphasizes brand consistency over everything else. He wants the Facebook presence to look exactly like the corporate websites and the microsites too. That matters above developing a meaningful conversation on the Facebook page.
2. Your Facebook page includes tabs that have no ability for consumers to participate. A Facebook tab without social interaction is a brochure and not meant for Facebook. Take it out. Don’t design against the ethos of Facebook.

3. The Wall is locked down preventing consumers from starting and joining conversations. The Wall is the killer application of Facebook pages and it is in the brand’s best interest to promote social interaction there. Ignoring it is a mistake.
4. The Facebook page does not leverage social graph functionality. Every time I’m asked to do something on Facebook, I want to see whether any of my friends have performed that task and if I do enjoy performing the task I’d like to have the ability to invite other friends to do so. Seems straightforward but a lot of brands still ignore this.
5. There’s a campaign mindset driving the Facebook execution. You know you’ve got a problem when all the tabs are named after marketing campaigns and there’s no overarching messaging or story that stitches them together. A conversation with consumers is not about throwing campaigns at them.
6. The Facebook page serves simply as a hub to house campaigns that are born on other platforms and channels. A lot of marketers still forget that the social platforms provide the best value when unique, platform specific strategies and executions are deployed. Just because something was a great TV campaign it doesn’t mean it should reside on the FB page in the same manner.
7. The Facebook page has closer synergies to a display media campaign than it does to your mobile strategy. Display media plays a very important role in the marketer’s arsenal. Don’t get me wrong. But it is a different beast to your Facebook efforts. Engagement ads on Facebook help the pages much more. And over the long run, your mobile strategy will need to work with your Facebook executions most closely.
8. You ignore the fact that the Facebook page presence should reach into all your digital ecosystem via the Facebook Graph API. Take a look at Levi’s website as an example of what I mean. They use the “Like” buttons effectively on all their product pages.

9. Your Facebook page is used just as a content aggregator. It’s a little scary but in the digital marketing world we like to think of hubs and spokes a bit too much. The website used to be the hub for the brand online and now many think Facebook should be. There’s one problem with that – pages that simply aggregate content and conversations from elsewhere aren’t good for building community and starting fresh conversations.

10. You’re anonymous on your Facebook page. The importance in building social voices – real, authentic people speaking on behalf of your brand for you online is crucial in all you do. That must translate to your Facebook page too. If I don’t know who’s doing the talking it’ll feel even more like a microsite experience than a Facebook one.
So that’s the ten signs that you may have Facebook Microsite Syndrome. Agree with these? Any you’d like to add to the list?

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