Avari Blog

Success Story: Mastering Facebook Pages for Customer Retention

[fa icon="calendar"] Oct 28, 2013 / by Sandy Hathaway

RetentionGrid is now AVARI. Read more about how we’ve grown in Our Story: From RetentionGrid to AVARI.

The potential that a Facebook Page offers for your customer retention can be tapped if you take a little bit of time to think in advance. Ideally you want to have a plan for being present in such a way that prospects and customers want to interact with you. Clear positioning of who you are versus your competitors, branding that expresses your unique personality, and the right person manning the channel will result in a page that creates a long-lasting connection with your customers.

The Secret Ingredient is a great example of these points coming together with impressive results on their Facebook Page. Who are they? The Secret Ingredient creates easy-to-cook recipes, procures and pre-processes top-quality ingredients, and delivers everything their customers need to have delicious, convenient, home-cooking experiences.

The Secret Ingredient Keeps Their Customers Coming Back

Despite being only two years old, The Secret Ingredient has one of the best customer retention rates we’ve seen yet. When they first started working with RetentionGrid, we were astonished to learn that nearly 50% of their customers had already ordered more than once.


Secret Ingredient Team The Secret Ingredient Team

Most online shops are lucky to achieve half that. In fact, our metadata currently shows that the overall average percentage of repeat customers is only 20%, with way too many businesses struggling along with far less.

We wanted to understand this problem better, so we asked a bunch of business owners what was going wrong. The feedback was nearly unanimous: they told us that they don’t know what to do or how to do it, and that they are super squeezed for time to figure it out and manage it.

RetentionGrid tackles this problem head-on — we help online businesses keep their customers coming back by showing them what they need to know and enabling action.

But, we can’t replace the most important factors of all:

    • the shop owners themselves,
    • their passion for what they do,
    • and the unique positioning of their brand.

Because positioning and branding is so important for retention, it is also possible to grow customer loyalty with your Facebook Page.

The Secret Ingredient is a great example of doing this right. When we took a closer look at their business online, we immediately realized that they market their company and product beautifully, and they’ve totally knocked the branding ball right out of the park with the way they use Facebook.

We immediately saw a chance to learn best practices, and their founder, Maximillian von Poelnitz, was kind enough to share their expertise with us and you.

Online Small Businesses Can Use Facebook as a Virtual Brick-and-Mortar Hub

“Facebook is the place to do what was traditionally done face-to-face,” Max began. “As e-commerce businesses, we don’t experience that beautiful moment when a customer walks through your door and you welcome them to your world. That moment is a golden opportunity not just for selling, but also for upselling and cross-selling. We treat Secret Ingredient customers on Facebook as if they were right in front of us in our store. They’re the reason why we make high-quality branding on our Facebook page a priority.”



Don’t Ask for a Page “Like” — Invite Your Customers Inside

Getting your customers to “like” your Facebook page is a good goal, because it builds a channel for retention marketing. However, every business online is begging for “likes” — but what’s in it for the customer? Rather than asking for “likes,” entice your customers with the value they will get from joining your Facebook page, from the moment they visit your website.


Social Call To Action The Social Call To Action

On the upper right side of The Secret Ingredient homepage, you are asked to “Join us in our kitchen.” This immediately interrupts your eyes’ normal scanning behavior. The call to action (CTA) is well-conceived to tickle any foodie’s fetish: When not cooking themselves, people who love to cook also love to engage in culinary conversations with like-minded others.

In this case, The Secret Ingredient has chosen to forgo the common on-page Like button that only confirms that you clicked it. Clicking their CTA transports you to their delicious Facebook page, where their warm invitation is immediately fulfilled.

Think of Your Facebook Page as Your “In-Store” Display

Upon arrival “in the kitchen,” the eye-candy on The Secret Ingredient’s Facebook page makes pressing that “Like” button a gratifying choice. The design conveys the brand’s offer of a mouth-watering encounter with quality, variety, and convenience.


Facebook Page Design Customer Retention The Secret Ingredient's Mouth-Watering Design

Stimulate Customer Conversations with Great Photos that Add Value

The Secret Ingredient photo stream is a treasure trove of delightful images combined with useful information, turning Facebook Likes into customer love. Why does this work so well? In real life, over 90% of our communications are actually nonverbal. Photos more closely simulate a face-to-face relationship building experience.

To quote Mike Parkinson, “The ability of visual stimuli to communicate and influence is undeniable and inescapable.” Words are processed by our short-term memories, and can only hold about 7 bits at a time. Images go directly into our long-term memories, evoking emotions and creating a lasting impression. They provide you with a much more powerful way to stay in your customers minds.

The data proves it: photos rule Facebook, generating 53% more likes than the average post. When businesses master what it takes to make the perfect Facebook photo post, their audiences are delighted and content is shared.

We had a lot of fun looking at all the cool photos posted by The Secret Ingredient. We selected several posts below, that have garnered more than 50, and even over 100 “likes” from their fans. That way you can get a feel for what stimulating content looks like.

This is what 50+ Facebook likes looks like… Tweet this

[gallery columns="4" ids="170,167,169,168,166,165,164,163,159,160,161,162,158,157,156,155,151,152,153,154"]

Bright colors, simple focus, happy occasions and sweet ideas do the trick for The Secret Ingredient. Keeping an eye trained to look for photo-worthy moments and shooting your photography to work well on Facebook is something to always keep in mind. But, if you think about it only after the fact, there are also lots of great tools to help you make your photos look excellent anyway.

Kick Things Up A Few Notches By Adding Value to Your Photo Posts

Now that your photos look awesome, don’t stop there. The Secret Ingredient’s most popular posts include a great image PLUS useful links, tips and recipes. They inspire customers and enable them to carry the enjoyment beyond the Facebook page and into offline areas of their life. It’s not hard to do, and people love it.


React to Facebook Comments Go Beyond Great Photos

Go For a Laugh While Making Your Point With Clever Memes

Let’s not forget about memes! Yes, that statement probably garnered some cringing and some eye-rolling. It’s no secret, getting memes right in business can be tough, but The Secret Ingredient nails it here.


Nice Try, Mom Use Memes in Social Media

Feel that smile on your face? This meme is great. It grabs the attention of the target customer with a laugh, and the copy offers a solution in a way that makes her feel great about herself and the fun, healthy cooking she could be doing for her family.

Use Buffer to Schedule your Facebook Posts During Likeable Times

Now that you are excited and raring to start posting more amazing images on your Facebook Page, there is an important caveat to remember: Quality beats quantity. Don’t go wild and overdo it. Think about your own Facebook feed and how annoying it can be when the same person or business is dominating the stream.


Best Time to Tweet Best time to share

If the barrage your of posts escape the wrath of the blocking button, the law of diminishing returns applies anyway. Posting three or more times a day simply becomes noise, and your customers will scan past your content rather than engaging with it.

The Secret Ingredient limits their number of posts to about two per day. One or two posts a day are the most you should do, and the research proves it: at that maximum frequency there are 32% higher “like” rates and 73% comment rates, versus posting more than that.

If you are in the creative productive zone and you are cranking out a bunch of photo post ideas all at once that is still okay. Use Buffer to load up a queue of releases that are precisely scheduled by day and time. They’ve got some solid data supporting the best schedules that you can follow to get the most exposure.

Get Your Individual Products Connected to the Liking Network Too

One final point about what The Secret Ingredient is doing right on Facebook: Allowing people to directly “Like” individual products that they offer from within their website is a great way to increase the viral potential of their content. Customers who feel passionate about a great experience will want to share that enthusiasm with their friends.

Adding the “Like” button to individual products in a shop might seem like a coding challenge, but your shop platform provider, i.e. Shopify, will likely have instructions to help you.


Facebook Like button on your product Adding a Facebook Like Button

So, How Can RetentionGrid Help The Secret Ingredient ?

Doing a great job of branding and engaging customers on social media, as The Secret Ingredient has done, is only one part of the strategy for growing repeat sales. Their remaining half of one-time buyers continues to represent a major untapped opportunity.

Furthermore, many of their two and three time customers can be converted to long-term, loyal customers. RetentionGrid’s proven targeting and engagement techniques will help The Secret Ingredient get more of those customers to come back, too.

We asked Max to share what value he gets out of RetentionGrid:


“RetentionGrid begins to address our need for improved customer relationship management. We appreciate the way we can track customer purchase behavior, and use that data to guide as many people as possible into the loyal segment. We especially like the downloadable .CSV files by segment, which we can upload to other applications.”



You Can Keep More Customers Coming Back by Mastering Facebook Marketing

Finding ways to make ordinary things extraordinary is the simple path to a sustainable business with strong repeat sales. People want an extra injection of entertainment, beauty, novelty in their consumption of core content about their passion. Surprise them. Tease them. Intrigue them. Delight them. Top it all off with genuine added value. This philosophy applies everywhere, from how you handle a complaint to how you follow up on an order to the way you play on Facebook.

Photos and memes are the perfect media by which to do this, and not only is a Facebook Page free, it is primed for this kind of branding and marketing. If you would like to learn more about what you can do with your content on Facebook, check out this great article by Jeff Bullas, “10 Powerful Tips to Increase Fan Engagement on Facebook.”

One final note: The official Facebook Page guidelines on advertising, background/cover design, offers and more are updated pretty regularly, so be sure to do a quick check on what is allowed before you get started and from time-to-time after that.

Happy Facebooking!

Congratulations to The Secret Ingredient, we’re raising a glass (inspired by you) to your excellent Facebook marketing!


Excellent Facebook Marketing Excellent Facebook Marketing by The Secret Ingredient

Share your favorite headlines

Online Businesses Use Facebook as a Virtual Brick-and-Mortar Hub...tweet this

Don’t Ask for a Facebook “Like” — Invite #Customers Into Your Store...tweet this

Your Facebook Page Cover Image is Your “In-Store” Display...tweet this

Ways to Position Your Business with Clever #Memes...tweet this

Use @Buffer to Schedule Facebook Posts During “Likeable” Times...tweet this

Keep Customers Coming Back with a Better Facebook Page...tweet this

All photos courtesy of The Secret Ingredient.

Topics: Retention Marketing, Social Media, Success Story

Sandy Hathaway

Written by Sandy Hathaway

Sandy is a Co-Founder and the CMO at AVARI, where she is responsible for overseeing the company’s business strategy, influencer relations, demand generation, product marketing, branding, and buzz. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, slow food, movies, games, and discovering the ever-changing face of Berlin.