Everyone and their mom is on Facebook, but is that reason enough to use the platform to market your business? Yes. Most definitely, yes.
Regardless of how you feel about the social media behemoth, 80% of your small-business peers are growing their business on Facebook—and they’re seeing results. With over a billion daily active users, Facebook is one place that’s worth paying attention to for all online retailers.
It’s Business (Page) Time
Have you ever used your own Facebook account to promote your products? You’re not the first. Everyone who’s running a business has friends or family who support them, and it only makes sense to keep them in the loop! That said, setting up a Facebook Page for your business might be a better idea.
A Facebook Page gives you a dedicated space for growing your brand. You can tell people about your products, share offers, and engage your customers in conversation.
If you already have a personal Facebook account, you’re ready to create your Page. First, choose whether you are a “Local Business or Place” or “Brand or Product.” If you don’t have a brick and mortar store, go with the latter.
Then, fill out the “About” section. This helps build your identity as a business. You’ll see spaces to fill in categories for your products, an address (if you run a local business), your contact details, and so on. Be thorough. Whatever information you provide helps to paint a picture for your customers, which builds trust.
Last but not least, upload photos for your profile picture and cover photo. For your profile pic, your business logo works perfectly. Your cover photo, on the other hand, is more like a window display. Choose a great, catchy photo that represents what you sell or who you are as a seller. You can always change it in the future.
Once you’ve set up your Page, don’t forget to invite your friends to “Like” the Page. When you hit 25 likes, you can claim your own unique URL for the Page, which should ideally connect back with your brand.
What to Post on Your Facebook Page
Just like conversations in real life, your Facebook Page posts should feel human and cover a variety of topics. This is a good thing—who wants to be promotional all the time?
By posting content that is relevant, useful, and engaging, you build relationships with your visitors and earn the right to sell to them.
A good way to start posting is to make a list of things that relate to your business. If you sell home and garden furniture, for example, your brainstorm might include decorating tips or what you’re planting this spring. If you sell clothes, fashion tips would be a natural fit. Have an eBay store for car parts and accessories? Get technical. Your customers are precisely the kind of people who appreciate expertise.
3 Ways to Post:
Pics & Flicks
Most of us know from our own experience with social media that photos always win over text-only posts. That said, video beats photo with a stick. In 2014, Facebook announced that the number of video posts created per person increased 94% in the US.
Try to include photos with your posts, whenever possible, but if you have products that you can showcase or demo using video, go for it. Remember that videos are set up to auto-play silently in people’s News Feeds so the first few seconds of your video need to grab their attention. Check out more Facebook video tips.
Tuning into the Right Frequency
If there were a golden rule for how often to post, it would be this: Quality over quantity. When you start posting, try to create content that you would want to read yourself and try to do that consistently.
Aim to post at least a few times a week. Posting once or twice a day is a great goal if you can maintain the quality of your posts. If you can’t think of something to share, don’t worry and just skip it!
How to Manage and Grow Your Facebook Page
If you build it, they will come. And when they do, you need to be ready to answer their questions.
In 2016, according to a consumer survey conducted by Sprout Social, 36% of people admitted they used social media to shame a company for poor customer service and a whopping 30% of people said they go to a competitor if a brand doesn’t respond.
With this in mind, if someone asks a question or comments on your post, get back to them right away. Install the Pages Manager App on your phone so you can respond when you’re on the go. Read more about why engagement matter for brands here.
In addition to being responsive, another way to grow your brand is by using Facebook Insights. You can look at post engagement (likes, comments, shares), reach, and demographics, and get an overall sense of how your Page is doing. Analyzing your posts will help you see if your content is resonating with your fans and what you can do to improve your Page’s performance. More about Facebook Insights here.
How to Use Facebook Ads
Because of Facebook’s global reach and the relatively inexpensive cost of running an ad—sometimes just dollars a day—Facebook Ads are truly low-hanging fruit for small business marketing.
Ads can help increase your reach in a very targeted way. Want to reach newly married couples in Des Moines who love dogs, baseball, and watching The Bachelor? You actually can.
Building Your Brand One Human Post at a Time
Facebook Pages are an excellent way to build your brand and reach new customers. Just remember to keep your posts short and varied. Use photos and videos whenever possible. And always write back.
And if you’re ready to tackle another social media channel, don’t miss our recent post on marketing your items on Instagram. Or our three-part Pinterest for Business series, which covers set-up, tips for using the platform, and 10 common pitfalls to avoid.
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