Facebook is the world’s largest voluntary, non-religious organization on the planet. Let that sink in for a moment. Because of the immense size of it, Facebook is infinitely attractive to just about everyone who wants to stay engaged with what’s happening in their friends’ and family’s lives, as well as current trends and news events. While the website was originally envisioned as an exclusive social network, it now has grown to encompass just about every facet of our lives, especially including business.
As an entrepreneur, you must embrace this platform of social media to stay relevant and persuade customers to patronize your business. However, as much Facebook is all-encompassing, it can be an absolute time-waster for businesses if they don’t know how to use it effectively. In this article, we’ll take a look at some different strategies that you can utilize to take advantage of Facebook’s limitless potential.
What’s the Purpose?
Before even registering a business page on Facebook, you need to be clear what your business needs to accomplish using this form of social media. “Making more money” is too vague, and many hapless businesses have floundered under the immense scale of the site.
Will you be wanting to steer new customers towards your website? Are you looking to only advertise your services only to non-local customers? (check out our Guide to Facebook Advertising) Or, are you trying to raise the online awareness of your brand by obtaining likes? Facebook can serve all of these functions (and many more), but not everything is right for every business. For instance, your advertising budget may be limited—considering Facebook’s growing organic reach problem, you may want to invest your money in cheaper advertising campaigns on other platforms.
Remember, keep the purpose of using this site as specific as you can and stick to a solid plan.
Each Post Must Have Purpose
Once you’re profile is set up and working, you must post content that attracts customers and retains your preexisting ones. For this content to be effective on Facebook, you need to define the purpose of posting it, just as you have for creating your Facebook page.
- You want the format of your posts to match your goals. Each has their own effect:
If you’re posting a status update, you’re looking to acquire likes and comments to engage your audience.
- For links, your purpose is to attain click-throughs that land customers onto your website, where you can sell them your goods and service.
- Finally, for photos and videos, you’re looking for likes and shares to disseminate your company’s message through Facebook (and other platforms)
Once this is completed, you can start to utilize Facebook’s built-in advertising features, such as boosting posts and targeting demographics. However, if you had started without a purpose, your advertising budget may be wasted on unintended effects.
What’s the Value of All This?
In regards to your Facebook marketing, remember that value is key. Your content and posts must clearly illustrate for customers how your company is bringing value and problem-solving to their lives, offering better solutions from the competition. Be deliberate and unique in your message. Every post and page on Facebook must be in line with this notion, whether it’s the About section of your business page or your video ad campaign. If your business is vague, you’ll confuse customers and waste resources when they go looking elsewhere.
One of the key marketing features that Facebook offers is in their Insights page. Data that is collected from your business activities and social engagement is displayed on your Facebook Insights page. Using the data there, you can make educated guesses on what content and engagement your audience responds best to. This is no easy process, however, as sometimes there’s too much information to take into account. Spend an adequate amount of time exploring your Insights to see which metrics/demographics are relevant to your business, how they work, and what the meaning of them could be. Knowing what types of data are vital to your business, is a process of trial and error, so be sure to experiment with your content’s variables, like time of posting, until you find a winning strategy that produces consistent results. For more information on Facebook Insights, https://blog.kissmetrics.com/guide-to-facebook-insights/
Know When to Post and How Often
Like we mentioned before, using Facebook Insights can be eye-opening with all the data available. Just as it’s important to post quality content to engage your audience, it is also important to take into consideration when the best time to post on Facebook is, as well as how many posts you should be making. This also includes the intervals between the posts so as to not oversaturate your audience. Some schools of thought say starting at 1pm and posting throughout the afternoon is a solid strategy, but as with anything Facebook related, you’ll have to experiment to find the right balance for your social media strategy.
Starting from zero on Facebook can be a daunting prospect, especially considering that a large amount of online activity can be a Catch-22 of social proof (https://blog.kissmetrics.com/social-proof/): you need an audience to gain an audience, so what do you do when you don’t have an audience?
Start by reaching out to your friends, family, and existing customers to boost your numbers. If you have a Facebook page with a lot of friends, invite as many as you’d think would be relevant to your business, which can be done via Facebook’s Build Audience section.
After you’ve reach a base audience, start looking for other ways to add potential customers into your fold. One method is to utilize various social plugins on your website that can, simply by clicking, add their like to your page, and thus stay updated on your content. There’s also paying for likes, which is a paid advertisement option on Facebook. For an interesting case study on this topic, click here (http://www.searchenginejournal.com/paying-likes-facebook-worth-case-study-search-engine-journal-exclusive/88111/). The gist of the article is that, by paying for clicks, you can increase the audience of your Facebook page exponentially to reach unpaid, curious customers.
While targeting specific demographics and posting engaging content is a great way to utilize Facebook, they are nothing without a call-to-action. A call-to-action is an effort on the part of the advertiser to get their targeted audience to perform an action with an intended result. By incorporating a call-to-action button, which Facebook heavily features as part of their advertising, users can be steered towards what you want you want them to do. Currently, Facebook has 7 options:
- Book Now
- Contact Us
- Use App
- Play Game
- Shop Now
- Sign Up
- Watch Video
Each call-to-action button has a specific use, so it’s up to your businesses Facebook marketing strategy to determine which way you’d like your audience to go. By properly directing your customers towards your website, you can drive up traffic and sell them your goods and service.
Finally, never stop experimenting with Facebook’s various marketing methods to use it effectively. Facebook is always a changing operation just as your audience can be. You must constantly monitor your advertisements and posts on Facebook to ensure that you are correctly harnessing the power of this incredible social media platform.