Businesses of all types are successfully using Facebook to market their companies. In September 2016, there were 60 million business pages on Facebook, one-third more than a year prior.
Of various social media platforms (think: Twitter, Pinterest) Facebook is particularly interesting for businesses because of the ability to curate how you distribute content and ads and the level of engagement. According to Facebook statistics from February 2017, there are over 1.8 billion Facebook users worldwide who are active each month. That’s a huge opportunity for businesses of all shapes and sizes.
If you’re new to using Facebook for business, make sure you know these seven hacks to help you get the most from your Facebook marketing.
1. Increase Visibility of Important Posts
This is a simple tip, but many people aren’t aware that posts can be “pinned” to the top of a Facebook Timeline. It’s frustrating when a post describing an important announcement or special offer disappears down your page. Pin that post to the top of the Timeline for longer visibility. Note that this only works on a business page; if you set up a personal page for business use, this feature won’t be available to you.
2. Carefully Target Facebook Ads to Customers and Prospects
Facebook provides a wide variety of options for targeted ads, but it’s necessary to explore the options and take advantage of those that can make your ad dollars money well spent. In fact, Facebook partners with third-parties to provide more targeting options than it could on its own.
For example, if you own a moving company, you can take advantage of the “Likely to Move” filter under the Behavior category. These Facebook users are identified by the information gathered and analyzed by a marketing data firm called Epsilon. There is a fee for using Epsilon’s services.
Up to 15 percent of your advertising budget will go toward fees. However, that may be a small price to pay for such specific targeting. Pair the “Likely to Move” filter with specific zip codes and household income, and your ad will be seen by excellent prospects.
3. Use Facebook Ads to Reinforce Marketing in Other Channels
It’s critical to stay in touch with your existing clients, but often a monthly newsletter isn’t enough. Increase your visibility with your clients by reaching them in more than one channel. For example, use the Custom Audience capability to upload your customer and/or prospect list to a Facebook campaign.
Run the Facebook ad just before the newsletter hits and for a short period afterward. Use the same approach for direct mail campaigns.
Once you have a Custom Audience defined, expand your reach to similar prospects or clients using Facebook’s Lookalike Audience filter.
4. Target Website Visitors Who Come From Facebook
If a Facebook user clicks on your ad and reaches a landing page on your website, they’ve already shown interest in your product or service. It’s rare for a sale to be made during that contact, therefore, it’s beneficial to continue to market to that person.
Use the Facebook Pixel to create a custom audience comprised of these website visitors. Create a retargeting ad for that custom audience that reinforces your message, encourages those individuals to return to your website or promotes a special offer. In addition, use the Lookalike Audience filter to expand your reach to similar prospects.
5. Increase the Reach of Your Posts with Video
PCWorld quoted Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg when he said, “In five years, most of [Facebook] will be video.” Now is the time to move in that direction. Not only is it part of Facebook’s stated strategy, but it works extremely well.”
Research shows that posts with video achieve a 135 percent greater organic reach than posts with photos. Furthermore, people spend three times longer watching live streaming video than pre-packaged videos. As a result, Facebook is going to give live streaming posts prominence in News Feeds over video posts.
6. Keep Your Facebook Page Active With Free Tools
It can be difficult at times to publish attractive, attention-getting Facebook posts on a regular basis. Look into free tools that can contribute to making Facebook posts easy. For example, DrumUp is a free service that will post to your Facebook wall for you. The service uses keyword phrases that you specify to search the internet for articles that would interest your audience.
Other tools include LikeAlyzer, a free application that will help you understand what can be done to make your Facebook page more successful. If creating an attractive post is your challenge, look into free services like Canva that can streamline the process using pre-defined visually appealing templates.
7. Encourage Interaction, but Protect Your Brand
When people leave comments, it’s a healthy sign. Always respond to comments to keep the conversation going. However, comments won’t always be positive, and it’s important that you protect your brand by dealing effectively with disgruntled Facebook fans.
Respond quickly to propose creating a resolution, then contact the person privately to work out the details. Try to avoid an extended discussion of the problem online. Once the issue is resolved, you may feel comfortable asking the individual to remove the post. Another alternative is to respond to the post with a brief statement indicating that the issue is resolved and thanking the individual for their business.
Facebook can be an important part of your marketing strategy. Use targeted Facebook ads to reach your audience, keep your Facebook page active (incorporating video wherever possible) and encourage fans to engage while protecting your brand. Following that formula will give you an excellent foundation for building a lively and profitable Facebook presence.