Facebook For Business

A Facebook Page for your business can be a powerful tool to grow awareness and build a fan/customer base. Unfortunately, like most marketing, it’s not as easy as logging in one night, creating a page and instant success.  Before you create a Facebook Page for your business there is some planning work required.

Strategy & Content

Firstly, think about your aim for your Facebook Page.  Is it to provide hints, tips, specials?  It’s not easy to find interesting, relevant and engaging content on a day-to-day basis but you need to have a content strategy and identify your target audience.  This will help you decide the type of content you are going to share.  Next, spend some time researching and creating your posts behind the scenes and populating a content calendar.  Facebook has a feature that allows you to schedule posts ahead of time which is very effective.

Preparation is the Key

Don’t hit the ‘publish’ button too early.  Make sure you have done the preparatory work ‘behind-the-scenes’ before it is publicly viewable. As a minimum, your ‘About’ section should be complete, ensuring your full contact details, website and business description are accurate and explain exactly what your business is all about. Ideally upload some photos that showcase your products before launching and also have your first post up so that friends, visitors, fans and potential customers don’t land on an empty wall.

Build your Profile through Facebook Ads and Promoted Posts

Although creating and updating your Facebook Page is free, to ensure your fans aren’t all just friends and family you need to expand your reach.  Having identified your target market, it is economical to utilise Facebook Ads with targeted ads using demographics such as location, age and interests to communicate with potential customers outside your Facebook connections. For example, a Facebook Ad can target all Australian members over 21 years old and who have indicated they are small business owners.  This ad will reach over 500,000 Facebook users.  There is also a service called ‘Promoted Posts’ which is designed to expand the reach of your content.  You can choose to promote your post at the time of posting (or later) in much the same was as the Facebook Ad.  By checking the appropriate box, you can potentially acquire new fans by promoting your post to friends of people who like your page as well.  The cost of this service varies based on a number of factors including  the size of your page and the reach but you can limit the maximum dollar spend per day and the duration of the promotion, keeping the cost minimal.

Claim your Business Name

It is possible that there is already a Facebook page for your business created by someone else. This may happen where someone has ‘checked in’ to a location and created the business if it didn’t already exist.  Ensure you claim the page and/or merge it with your business page. This makes it far easier to promote your page to others and through marketing collateral. This means that instead of your Page URL being http://facebook.com/pages/PatsPlumbing/123456789, it can be as simple as http://facebook.com/PatsPlumbing.

Create an Offer

There are 3 types of offers:

  • On-line only (only redeemable on your website);
  • In-store only (people must print the offer or show it on their smartphones when they are in the shop);
  • On-line and In-store (redeemable both in the store and on the website).

Offers are a great way of promoting your page, your website and your business.  A good offer with a strong headline can generate traffic for any business.  Again, you can set your own budget and specify the maximum number of offers available.  You can also set an expiration date and reminders for those who have claimed the offer that it is about to expire.  Offers are only available when your page has 100 or more ‘likes’.

The above guidelines are just the start of building a successful Facebook presence.  Constant engagement nurtures trust, which is what you will need to build before your fans will become your advocates.

Click HERE to download the full edition of The Business Accelerator Magazine for June 2013.

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