Nowadays, everybody knows that social networks play a significant role in the promotion of a company. That’s why having an engaged and active community on Facebook can make all the difference to your business.
But if you don’t know what you’re doing, building Facebook friends can take a lot of time and effort. So to help you to quickly build your Facebook fans, here are 5 simple steps you should take.
Social networks for the customer, however, remain a “hobby” for most users, providing ways to contact friends and see what people are up to. To get any traction with this hobbyist audience, businesses need to be clever and behave like friends of the users rather than simply promoting to them.
Consider that you are interrupting their leisure time. The businesses that get the most engagement on Facebook are those that melt into the background and give their fans what they want. Often, showing the human side of your business encourages Facebook users to feel closer to your brand.
Here are 5 steps to grow your Facebook brand;
1. Analyse your target audience
You should know who your target audience is, and just like any marketing activity it all starts here. Handily, Facebook has an audience targeting tool called Facebook Audience Insights where you can look up the age of the audience, their gender, their interests, their location and much more!
Did you know you can even target people based on what they’ve written in their profile and their activity? For example, if you wanted to target young mums, Facebook will know who these people are because of their timeline posts. It’s called incent targeting.
If you can afford to pay to run ads, you can very accurately find the audience you are looking for. And the smaller and more targeted the audience group you define, the better the ad will work. Relevancy is key.
2. Optimise your Facebook business page
The work begins when you create your Facebook business page. Actually, it’s one of the most significant steps because it is what all your activity essentially runs from. Think of it like your shop window on Facebook.
Here are a few things you should not overlook on the Facebook Business page;
First of all, the title of your page is essential. Fans should be able to find you easily by typing the name of your company in the Facebook search bar, so be sure to keep the same name on your Facebook page as on your website.
Next, the company description. When you create your page, you have the opportunity to write a short description about your company and what it offers.
Have your target customer in mind when you write it and write it for them. You might be tempted to write a general description that would service everyone, but everyone is not your customer. So again, relevance is key.
If it makes sense, try to include some of your business keywords so your description comes up in a search. Facebook search also behaves like a search engine.
Suitable picture / photo
Lastly, it is important to choose a suitable profile picture and cover photo because they are the visual elements that people will remember. Many businesses will use their company logo or a version of their logo for the cover photo.
Make sure your brand is instantly recognisable from the visual elements. Use your brand colours and brand fonts if you are including text and opt for simplicity and bold design over anything else so you make a lasting impression.
3. Post interesting content
This is probably the most important thing. If your content isn’t of interest to your target audience, they won’t be your fan and they won’t follow your page.
When your page is ready, you should dedicate some time to focus on the content of your page. Make a content plan. Perhaps look at some other Facebook pages that you like and emulate the type and style of content.
The great thing with Facebook is that you can see what is content is popular on other brand’s pages, so it’s very easy to find similar brands and content that has performed well.
It’s a good idea to have a tone of voice in mind for your page and to keep it consistent. Do you want to share real images of the day-to-day workings of your business or do you want to share motivational posts or funny videos? This will come down to the style and the tone of your brand voice and must appeal to your target market.
So, think about whether you want your page to be totally professional or fun and wacky or something in between. As a general rule, you can get away with being a bit more fun on social media.
The purpose of a Facebook page is to engage your fans by sharing interesting images, videos and emotions. If you share or post something that catches the imagination of your audience, you will likely get more likes and shares and consequently, more fans.
4. Be active too
It works in both directions. If you want your followers to comment on your posts, you also have to comment and reply and be an active member of the Facebook community.
It’s not good enough to simply post one thing a day. If you don’t have time to be an active member, then don’t expect Facebook to deliver any results. Constant communication and a hive of activity is the key of a good Facebook page.
If your page is empty, nobody will visit and comment on it. It’s called the “ghost page” syndrome. Moreover, if you are active on your page people will see your commitment and they will like it; they will feel special because you pay attention to them.
You could also consider using Messenger as a real-time conversation tool with your fans and customers. Many brands now use messenger to manage their customer service.
It’s very easy to have a conversation with your fans in real time and it’s very useful if someone has a question or complaint that you would prefer to answer on a private chat rather than on your Facebook wall.
5. Promote your Facebook page
Last but not least – promotion. Your fans will not find your Facebook page without you getting the word out first. If no one knows you have a Facebook page, you will not have any fans.
Just imagine, you put hours of work into the first four steps and your page is unread and unloved. Nightmare!
This is just the start of your Facebook journey. Now it’s time to think about different ways to promote your Facebook page;
- Have you got an email list you can share the page with?
- Can you run a competition to generate likes and shares?
- How about pushing it out on other social media channels such as Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn?
- Always add links to your social media accounts on your website too.
- When you publish a new blog post, share it on all your social networks.
In short: never stop promoting your page.
Having many followers on your Facebook page can give your brand credibility and in turn that can help you grow your business. The general rule is the more you put in, the more you will get out, but make sure the time spent on Facebook is going to be worth the reward as it won’t be right for every business.
But if it is right for your business, building a loyal community on Facebook can pay real dividends.
About the author
This guide has been written exclusively for ByteStart by Lucy Smith, founder of DigitalGrads a platform that trains graduates in digital marketing and then connects them with employers.
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