4 simple steps to make Facebook work for your business.
4 simple steps to make Facebook work for your business
Do you use social media to promote your business? If the answer to that is a bit of a sigh and a sad face then this is the post for you. Social media can seem a little bit scary if you’ve not used it before – it can feel like there is some secret to success that everyone knows apart from you.
Like most things in business, the only secret to using things like Facebook for business is honesty, thoughtfulness and a lot of hard work.
Look for quality not quantity
The key thing to remember with all social media is that you are looking for quality not quantity. It’s much better to have 500 fans who are engaged with your brand and regular posting and commenting than 50,000 fans who couldn’t care less. It is also important to remember that facebook isn’t a simple sales tool. It is about providing useful information, entertainment, and something extra that your customers can’t get, or not as readily at least, from anywhere else.
Get your basic profile right
So, how do you go about using Facebook for business? First off, you’ll need to set up a Facebook page. For businesses or blogs, you use a page format rather than a personal profile to make your business more accessible. Go to http://www.facebook.com/about/pages to start creating your page. The set up process is very straightforward, but there are a few basics you need to get in place:
- Complete the ‘about’ section with key information about your brand and links to your website.
- Add a striking cover image and update it regularly to refresh the look of your page. Use a clear image or your logo as your profile picture.
- Get a unique page username and customise your URL – www.facebook.com/username/. Whatever you choose, you’re stuck with it forever, so choose wisely!
Create great content
Once you’ve gone through the set up, what next? Well, this is the fun bit – creating content! It can be slow going to start with, but do stick at it. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Visit other pages for inspiration to check out what works well and what gets people talking.
- Check your page regularly and respond to comments and questions as soon as you can.
- Post at least daily, and if you know you are going to be away, schedule posts to keep the page active. (Click on the clock symbol just underneath the status update box).
- Make good use of photos and video to create variety.
- Like and tag partners in relevant posts to show you are supporting them and to encourage your fans to visit them too. (Use the @ symbol and start typing a company name to see a list appear).
- Keep your posts light, friendly and interactive – ask questions and encourage debate where you can.
- Share useful or entertaining content from other relevant pages (with credit) or websites.
- Offer something extra or exclusive that your fans can’t get anywhere else.
Track your progress
Whilst it’s all too easy to get caught up in obsessing over stats, it is important to have an overview of how your page is performing so that you can fine tune your strategy as you go along.
Facebook has some really easy to understand analytics, so make use of these to see which type of posts are most popular, what time of the day is most responsive, and to highlight the posts that get no response at all. Look at the things that you’re doing well and do more of this!