Part 2 of the Get Social Media Savvy Series.
There’s no denying Facebook’s domination of the Social Media Landscape. As of 2016, it now has 1.65 billion monthly users! It’s crazy to think about!
It reaches a lot of demographics and people in different walks of life and that’s what makes it so powerful.
However, just because it is the biggest doesn’t mean it is the best choice for your business. Big sometimes means it is easy to get lost in the crowd.
Just recently, Facebook announced even more changes to it’s algorithm. Specifically, an update to the news feed that “helps you see more posts from your friends and family.”
Not so great if you are a business and especially not great if you are just starting out.
Having said that, it is probably still worth investing in a Business Page even if it just means it isn’t your “primary” focus.
The benefit of a Facebook Business page is that it acts as a gateway between this prominent social platform and your website or store. It is a stepping stone that can convince someone that they do want to take the next step in getting to know you. It is a chance for you to give an impression of your brand and what you are about that makes you so wonderful.
Here are my Top 5 Tips for Getting the Most out of Facebook for your Small Business plus a Facebook Page Checklist.
tip 1: Make an Impression
A majority of your new traffic to your facebook page will come from a group, a shared post or advertising. So when someone lands on the page, you make an instant impression. So make it a good one!
You can do this in the following areas:
- Your Cover Photo: This is an online billboard for your business! So make use of it and don’t be scared to change it up for current promotions you have running. If you make beautiful products, switch to your latest collection or just your best sellers. If you are a service or informational business, tell people what you are about or announce your latest e-product.
- Your “Short Description”: This is what people will see when you share a link to your page so make it catchy!
- Your Pinned Post: This is the post that appears at the top of your feed. Use this space to introduce yourself or focus on a current promotion. Use an enticing picture or even a video.
- Your Location: If you are initially tar getting your local area make sure you share it (even if it’s just your city and country). Most people would love to buy local if they had the choice.
- Your Posts: More on this in No. 3
tip 2: Include a Call to Action
What will get people to move from visiting or liking your Facebook page to actually visiting your website or store? Or even better signing up to your email list or purchasing?
Make an offer, and make it enticing. Give them a reason to click through. It could be a special promotion, an opt-in freebie or just a beautiful product that they can’t resist.
Then make sure it’s EASY for them to get there!
Add your website to your about section. Include links to your website in all your promotional posts and your pinned post. Add a link in your Cover Photo description.
tip 3: Focus on Engaging Content, not just Promotions
“Native”, non-promotional content is what get’s likes, clicks, comments and shares. And the more likes, clicks, comments and shares you have the more likely your posts will appear in the news feed.
People are less likely to do the same with promotional posts. But if the majority (80%) of your posts are focused around engaging content, when you do post promotional posts the more chance these ones will also be seen.
So what engaging content can you use?
- Behind the Scenes Photos
- Ask Questions
- Tell a Story that creates a feeling
- Content that makes people look good (so they are more likely to share)
Basically anything that either helps boost your brand image, adds value or is helpful.Make sure you mix it up so you appeal to different people.
Make sure you mix it up so you appeal to different people.
If this sounds overwhelming to you, and you are more focused on a different platform. That is totally fine! You can look at ways of sharing from other platforms such as Instagram straight to your Business Page feed so the hard work is done for you.
tip 4: Join and Participate in Groups
If you have a small business or an online blog, groups are the place to be! This is where I first built my network and found my first clients.
When you are first starting out join a lot of them. Especially look for those where your target customer hangs out. Then over time you will find what groups are best for you.
Here are a few quick tips when it comes to Groups:
- Introduce yourself: starting with what you have in common with the group (e.g. mumpreneur or struggling to kick off your blog) before leading to your site.
- Listen!! Different groups will have different dynamics and they have different rules about sharing and promotions. See what the general vibe is and go with it.
- Participate in Group Threads such as Follow Fests, Blog Sharing and Promotions
But the number one tip: BE HELPFUL!! If you can answer someone else’s question easily just do it, without promoting, or if you find something interesting that will be useful for the group to know, share it (as long as it’s not a direct promo to you). Over time people will learn to appreciate this, they will learn your name and they will ask you what you do.
Which leads me to my final point on groups: Make sure your personal profile includes a link to your business page.
This can be done in the about section under your Work. That way if someone clicks through on your personal profile it is easy to find your business page.
tip 5: Keep Track
If all the above sounds scary, then take this last tip as extremely important for you. When first starting out, it is difficult to know what is working and what’s not.
You might spend an hour on a comment swap thread in a Facebook group and find that you don’t get much in return for it. So make sure for those first weeks you are checking in with your Analytics before you post something to these threads and then return later in the day and ask yourself did it work? Over time you will begin to recongise which groups and threads are more effective for you. Then you can narrow your focus down to 3-5 groups that you participate in regularly.
The same goes for Posts. Use your Facebook Insights to see what gets the most engagement. If something stands out, do more of that!
Finally, a note on Advertising…
If you find you are struggling for time. It might be worth considering advertising, especially when you have a specific promotion coming up. It is relatively inexpensive if done effectively.
But to truly make it work make sure you do two things:
1. You know what’s working for “free” – this will give you an idea on what to focus on
2. You can segment your audience well. Either by demographics, being members of particular groups, locations, fans of specific sports clubs, whatever it is! This way you can tailor your message to that specific group and be more likely to get some results.
In the end though, there is no replacement for engagement and community. So make sure you are replying to comments, that you are being helpful and you are generous. This is what will get you true supporters and not just followers.
So there you have it, my Top 5 Facebook Tips for Real Small Businesses. If you want to take this all a step further, make sure you get the free Facebook Checklist here. And make sure you keep checking in over the next few weeks as I add more posts and features in the “Get Social Media Savvy” Series.