Some companies seem to run their Facebook pages with so much ease. You know the ones; thousands of likes, fans tripping over themselves to be a part of the hot conversationâŚ
âŚ it makes you wonder what they are doing right, and what you are doing so terribly wrong!
Certain businesses are simply lazy when it comes to Facebook marketing. Perhaps they try a few posts, maybe no one replies and then they just give up.
Some business pages go totally the other way. Often sharing post after post with little thought as to what their audience is actually looking for.
Perhaps itâs the familiarity of Facebook that makes it difficult to grasp. Many business owners use Facebook personally so it can be tempting to try the same approach on your business page that you use for your personal page.
Whatever the problem may be, we see countless examples of businesses with bad Facebook marketing strategies.
Despite Facebook feeling like second nature to some, there is still a large knowledge gap for small business owners when it comes to Facebook marketing. Often, they simply aren't aware of how much they could achieve with the platform - or how to use it effectively.
With 1.32 billion daily active users, Facebook is a channel you simply cannot afford to miss.
Weâre going to talk you through some simple steps to get you up to speed with using Facebook for business. If you donât already have a Facebook page, you will want to set one up first.
1. It all starts with a plan
You may have already adopted a haphazard approach when it comes to managing your business page: weâre here to put an end to this. By defining what you want to achieve, you have a greater chance of achieving success.
For someone who is new to Facebook marketing, itâs easy to get caught up in collecting likes and focusing on this as the primary measurement of your success. As exciting as it may be to gain new followers, this alone will not do a great deal for your business.
When you think about goals, extend your thoughts beyond Facebook. After all, the purpose of having a platform is to generate more interest in your business and drive traffic back to your website.
Here are some common goals for Facebook business pages:
- Generating Leads
- Increasing blog or website traffic
- Building brand awareness
- Providing customer service
Once you know what you want to achieve, begin getting to know your audience better. Itâs important to know your audience; what excites them, what makes them share posts, what encourages them to get involved?
If you already have a business page, your Facebook analytics will help you get a good idea of which types of posts perform best. If you are new to Facebook, take a look at your competitorâs pages. What areas are they having success in? Find out what posts resonate with your chosen audience and you are already one step ahead.
2. Share great content
Once youâve set some solid goals and defined your audience, you can start planning what exactly you are going to share.
If your goal is to increase product sales, you may think that youâre Facebook page is going to be full of lovely product photos. Wrong. This kind of sales oriented page isnât going to cut it on Facebook.
Yes, you want your audience to be wowed by your amazing products but you also need to give them a reason to follow you and trust you. Think about what else you have you got to offer them besides a great product?
Creating a broad mix of content is the best way to do this, mix your own content with other peoples, share a range of photos and videos as well as just blogs. This way you can then look at what works and what doesnât and create a strategy that is targeted specifically at your audience.
You want to be seen as an expert in your industry, someone who keeps their finger on the pulse.
And donât forget: everything shared on your page should show your brand personality. (If you havenât already set the tone for your brand, you should get that together immediately.)
3. Get talking
Itâs a good idea to focus on increasing engagement as part your Facebook strategy.
Engagement constitutes the number of individuals sharing, liking and commenting on your posts. Their doing so vastly increases the visibility of your posts and the visibility of your business on Facebook, as the platform prioritises valuable and engaging content.
Putting your content out there is only half the work. Itâs a social network, the whole point is to get people talking. People need to be prompted and you may need to draw attention to yourself in order to be heard.
Ask questions about trending topics, share photos that spark a conversation, share customer stories and make sure that when people do engage with you, they get a reply. The buzz will soon die down if peopleâs comments are ignored.
This may be a slow process at first, but working out what does and doesnât work for your audience, is the only way you will create that buzz and keep people engaged.
This leads me on to my next point.
4. Track it, measure it, tweak it.
A lot of the initial work with Facebook is trial and error. Your audience is unique to your brand and as such, you need to work out what works for you.
Facebook makes it easy for us marketers to analyse what is working and what isnât with its own dedicated analytics suite, Facebook Audience Insights.
Here, you can see exactly what is working on Facebook and what isn't. Are people getting fed up with all those news updates you thought were interesting? Do you receive a higher engagement with your blog shares than your product images?
Facebook Insights also gives you a breakdown of the specific times at which you get the most activity, this can help you figure out the optimal time to post for your audience.
When you work out what people are looking for, you can tweak what you share to increase engagement and increase the number of people taking actions.
This is an iterative process which can be made simpler by following the earlier steps. Defining what works early on can ensure you find your perfect content mix quickly
5.Give it a boost!
Following the previous steps will help you get everything right in terms of what to share and how to encourage engagement. This gives you a better chance of getting seen - but it's by no means foolproof.
The problem we all face is a lack of visibility. Facebook estimates that only 16% of your fans see any one of your posts organically.
So how can you further increase your chances of being spotted? Paid promotion is the key.
You don't need a huge budget to start promoting your posts. A modest outlay can ensure your important posts are being given greater visibility. Facebook even allows you to target certain demographics, set your daily budget and length of a campaign.
Promoted posts are a quick, targeted and effective way to reach more of your target audience.
However, if you want promoted posts you work, you will need to keep on top of them. Tracking and tweaking are vital to success.
If you follow the steps above and dedicate the time to tweaking and testing, it will help you increase traffic to your website and help to achieve your other goals, whether that be the sale of a product or even just collecting emails addresses for your mailing list.
If, like many, you are new to Facebook marketing following this simple and effective plan will get you started on your first campaign. Good luck and remember to keep at it!