Extreme Makeover: Facebook Edition

by Ken Mueller on November 2, 2011 · 8 comments

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keefer family 300x168 Extreme Makeover: Facebook EditionThis post was originally supposed to have run on October 21, but my site was down so I decided to hold off until now. The post is written by one of my former students at Messiah College, Derek Forney. Derek is the Marketing Coordinator at International Marketing in Chambersburg, PA. This past summer he had the chance to get involved with Musser Home Builders while they were building a house for ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.

This Summer, I aided Musser Home Builders with their Facebook page. Musser Builders built a house in Etters, PA for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition’s ninth season. I also interacted with traditional news organizations in the media tent. During the two weeks that encompassed the pep-rally and build, Musser’s Facebook page garnered 700 new likes and over 172 k post views (compare to 805 total likes and 210 k post views). Post feedback surprised me the most however. Compared to the month prior to the build, the site had a 10,000% increase in feedback. This aspect excited me because not only did we get interaction, but as we posted photos, updates, and TV happenings, the interaction increased in exponential bursts.

From a week of “Extreme Facebooking” I learned a few things that helped to explain our success.

1.    Provide content that no one else has - During the week, traditional media (with one exception) found themselves stuck in a 12’x12’ tent watching and photographing the progress. With all-access*, we took the shots of the house everyone wanted, got all the latest build updates, and posted them live. As friends shared the page with friends, the dedicated following went to our page over traditional news sources to find out what happened, when it happened.
*All-access was limited by Official Extreme Makeover: Home Edition sanctions.

2.    Double Check and borrow a second pair of eyes -  While constantly posting and updating followers, a Facebook page acquires a voice, often similar to the person posting. However, it became evident that a double check here or a differing opinion may help when posting updates. This seems like a basic, routine function, probably because it is. That is why it is so important though. Without the aid of fellow writers and persons in the know, some posts would have lacked the zing that made them great or the corrections to maintain credibility.

3.    When repetitive messages don’t get the point across, repeat them again – Throughout the week prior to the build and the first couple days of the build, we constantly received posts asking about volunteer emails. Unfortunately, we didn’t handle the volunteer sign-up. And no matter how many times we asked for patience and deferred authority, posts kept coming. These posts offered opportunities to build relationships and credibility and despite the occasionally repetitive questioning. The relationships built in the initial stages and nurtured through the following week provided Extreme results for the page.

4.    Build toward a pinnacle -  The week had to come to an end, and thankfully, we knew when. The opportunity to have a scheduled build up provided the ability to strategically post content and create interest. Everyone else knew the week would end with a reveal on Sunday and curiosity built with each day. By posting continuously, but with a slight increase each day, the page increased interest and excitement to a near hysteria the day of the reveal.

5.    Get as excited as your followers – Excitement is not limited to the reveal site. During the hours building up to the reveal, we updated minute by minute what occurred. Fans posted that they felt like they were in the middle of the action. The excitement they felt combined with our excitement of being there to generate exponential growth, literally. Likes doubled from Saturday to Sunday (400 to 839) and comments grew to 188 for Sunday. The interaction increased because the excitement we showed mirrored the excitement of our followers.

 What lessons can we learn about utilizing Facebook and Social Media for our businesses, particularly in relation to events?

 Extreme Makeover: Facebook Edition
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