Table of Contents
Every social media presentation I give participants ask which network they should focus on first, and many assume it’s Facebook. Chances are, for most small businesses, Facebook is going to be the first stop on your social media strategy. Here are some of my top tips for marketing your business on Facebook.
Start a Business Page
Besides the fact that Facebook doesn’t allow you to run your business off a personal profile or group, there are specific benefits to having a Business Page. You’ll get access to analytics, advertising, and widgets for your website, among other things. People do not want to “friend” a business, but they will Like one.
Complete your Profiles
Make sure you have all the basic information filled out: your website, hours of operation and location if applicable. You can put in information about your services or products, or your company history if it’s interesting. If your company has a long history, consider adding some vintage pictures/events to the Timeline. Full and complete social media profiles are important, both for Google and your customers.
Don’t start a Facebook Page for your business until you are prepared to post to it on a regular basis. That doesn’t mean you have to spend all day, every day, on Facebook, but you do need to post regularly or the Facebook algorithm will work against you, and your fans will not see your posts.
Don’t Over Share
This is a tricky one. You need to post at least daily, and if you can post more often that’s great. However, in Halifax I hear from people that posting more than a couple of times a day is just too much. So, if you’re posting 6-8 times a day on your Business Page, you might want to reevaluate what you’re posting to see if it’s really meeting your goals.
This also means don’t over share personal information. Yes, your fans want to see the human side of the business, but they don’t need to know if you haven’t showered in three days because you’re sick in bed with hand, foot and mouth disease. Keep the personal posts light and sparse on your Business Page.
Have a Strategy
You need to have a plan for what you will post and when. It can be as simple as a schedule of theme days for each day of the week so that you know Mondays are “Motivational Monday”. Setting up a calendar to track what you need to post can truly save your sanity. This will also help prevent you from over posting any one type of content. If it’s easy for you to find motivational quotes to post and you post them daily, the more helpful content about your business could be getting lost in the shuffle. Use a schedule to space out your content appropriately.
Don’t Respond or Post When Angry
If someone leaves negative feedback about your business, you should have a standard answer that you can give quickly so they know they’ve been heard, but you need to refrain from “getting into it” while you’re still reeling from the feedback. This is your business…it’s your baby… and it hurts when someone posts something negative. Your gut reaction is to strike back, but it will do you more harm than good in the long run. Take the time to calm down and respond tomorrow if need be.
Respond to Every Post/Review/Comment
You do need to respond to every review and comment on your Page, whether they are positive or negative. If you’re getting a ton of comments on a post, perhaps all you have time to do is click Like on the comments, but at least they were all acknowledged. If you never interact with your fans’ comments on your page they’re going to wonder if you ever read what they’re saying. And if they wonder long enough, they will stop posting, which is the first step in your fans NOT seeing your content any longer.
Talk to People
As your business, go to other Business Pages and comment on things. Don’t spam them with offers for your business, but join the conversation. It’s ok to congratulate another business on an award, or say how much you like the product in the picture. This can help bring awareness to your own Business Page and to the fact that you are actually active on Facebook.
I can’t stress this enough. If you don’t know how to be useful on your Business Page I HIGHLY recommend you get the book Youtility, by Jay Baer. This book is all about how to develop useful marketing. You can start by simply answering your most frequently asked questions on your blog and posting links on your Business Page.
Build Relationships, Not Numbers
Remember, the goal of social media shouldn’t be to make sales. There are many different goals for social media, and done well, it will lead to sales. However, if you’re focus is on sales, you won’t provide the best social media content, the kind that will attract your ideal clients. Think about Miracle on 34th Street and how Santa Clause started sending Macy’s customers to other stores and how that resulted in better sales for them. Be truly helpful and useful and it will lead to sales.
Interestingly, most of these tips work for Twitter, LinkedIn and any other network, too.