With Facebook placing more emphasis on the commercial aspect of the platform, the ability to reach your fans without paying for it – AKA organic reach – is becoming harder with every algorithm change.
While you may think the solution is to push your business page to the side and focus your social media efforts elsewhere, don’t fret – there is still potential to create and curate some fabulous content to engage with your fans and targeted audience.
So how can you do that while not wasting too much time and energy – especially if you still look after the social platforms yourself? The following best practices for your Facebook Business Page should help you do just that.
- 1. Have a targeted posting strategy
Just like you wouldn’t pay for advertising with no idea what you’ll get out of it, you can’t expect to post content to Facebook without a strategy and hope it’s successful. You need a plan, or a content schedule as it’s now known, in order to be strategic about what you’re posting and when, in order to gain the most viewers you possibly can. It also needs to be logical, aimed at your target audience and evolve as you learn what works and what doesn’t.
Before putting your plan into action you need to identify the tone you would like your page to have and what type of content you can test to see what gets the best reaction from potential customers and fans. The better you understand your target market’s wants, needs, problems and how your business is presenting a solution – the better you will be able to create an effective plan. This includes considering how they use social media – the times of the day and days of the week they’re most likely to read a post. Include any special events, holidays or promotional periods so that you can plan out your posts in advance.
Having a schedule will also help to alleviate the scramble of trying to find things to post each day – particularly if you have this sorted well in advance. You will also find that it frees up a load of time that you would usually be glued to the screen!
Set out a planning day at the start of each week or month to nut this out. In the session, determine how many articles you’d like to write yourself and how many you’ll curate (source from other places). Of course, some things are topical, so be sure to keep an eye on your feed for any articles worth sharing on a day-to-day basis.
- 2. Upload a great profile pic and cover photo
Your page’s profile and cover images are super important as they are the first things your fans see when you communicate with them.
There is varying advice out there as to whether to paste text all over your images with logos, slogans, contact information, etc. But the main thing to remember is how small this information will be when it shows up in the news feed.
Therefore, a logo/watermark is fine in your cover photo but anything else will clutter up a perfectly good image that serves as the first impression to your potential customers/clients. Also, make sure you use an image that encapsulates your brand, is high quality and can be changed at least quarterly.
If your brand or business is you (as a personal trainer, coach or service provider), use a professional image of yourself as the profile picture, otherwise a logo – that fits perfectly in the square box – is acceptable.
- 3. Complete your ‘About’ section
Your ‘About’ section is self-explanatory. It is about you/your business, so use it! Potential customers/clients will go straight here to learn more about how to contact you, whether by phone, email or website.
If you have a website, list the URL as the first item in your About section (you can leave out the http://) and then put something concise and descriptive about your brand or business that conveys what you do.
- 4. Be engaging
The main aim for your Facebook Business Page should be fan engagement. Therefore, apart from being an extension of customer service, you should be aiming to catch people’s attention and motivate them to communicate with you or with others on your page.
Some great ideas to initiate engagement are things like asking questions (the more controversial the better), fill-in-the-blanks phrases, asking people to ‘tag a friend’ and reposting viral images or videos.
- 5. Post photos
It is proven that relatable images catch people’s attention, especially as we begin to cater more for mobile, so this easy-to-consume medium can be your (not-so) secret weapon.
Photos should be an integral part of your strategy and the best thing about this is you can repurpose your Instagram images (if you have an active profile) to your Facebook page – especially useful to cross-promote the platforms.
Recent Facebook data showed while photos had a lower reach, their engagement rates were much higher than other types of posts. Statistics from Post Planner last year stated that photos gained:
- 53 per cent more likes
- 104 per cent more comments
- 84 per cent more click-throughs
Remember that your photos should relate to your customer – not only to your product or service. How does the photo you choose make them feel, and how does that relate to what you’re offering?
- 6. Be human
Unfortunately, ‘being human’ is something many page owners fail to do because they feel most safe communicating with their audience in a business-only manner. This is boring, often overlooked and definitely does NOT grab the attention of your audience or your potential customers.
You need to make it personal, be authentic and communicate in first person if you want engagement with your page. Remember, your fans have invited you into their news feed by liking your page – you need to respect that and add value to their life with every post.
a) Our New Year Special for new Pilates Plus members is just $10 for the first month
b) Want to be the most toned babe on the beach? Learn the best exercises to tone your tummy in time for summer, just like the Sculpt Sisters (for $10* at Pilates Plus)
The second option clearly gives the brand an identity and an injection of personality. And it also gives fans someone (the Sculpt Sisters, for example) to connect to on the page, which is extremely important.
Even Woolworths have recently been applauded for showing a human side when responding to comments on their page, leading to some of their posts going viral!
What you should do:
- If you say you’ll get back to them – follow through!
- Remember face-to-face customer service rules DO apply online
- Kill people with kindness
- Always show empathy and respect
- Reply to comments using the person’s first name
- 7. Run contests
The most successful marketing campaigns, excluding Facebook Ads, are via contests, competitions and giveaways.
This method can drive massive fan growth over a short period of time as fans will tag others, share your contest and/or cross-promote on other social media platforms.
So, if you have something to give away (and it can be either a product or a service) do it! Although, remember to do a little research into the legalities on running a competition. You can find Facebook’s rules in their Page Terms here (https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php – Section III, Point E).
- 8. Be selective with page apps
Apps were a big thing on Facebook pages a few years ago but the platform has now removed the popular default landing tab/app feature (which acted as a welcome gate) when they introduced the timeline. This basically marked the end for a lot of apps. But there is still a place for some apps, you just need to be selective about which ones you choose.
For instance, connecting your Facebook Business Page to your other social media platforms requires an app. You will also need an active app in order to collect emails (if you have set up a lead page) or to sell products within Facebook.
If you run an eCommerce store, check out the integration options that can showcase your products at the top of your news feed. Major platforms like Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce and more have easily customizable options for this.
- 9. Monitor Page Insights
As crucial as it is to have a presence on Facebook, it is just as important to understand what content works and what doesn’t via Page Insights.
As a business owner, measuring the performance of your marketing effort can be a full-time job but Facebook has now made it a little easier to figure out what the numbers and graphs mean.
Even if you only check out the Posts category and monitor Engagement, this section of the platform will give you great insights into the content that your audience loves (and that you should provide more of) and the content that isn’t doing so well.
- 10. Leverage Facebook Ads
Ads are become a vital part of digital marketing strategy. It’s virtually impossible to grow a targeted and active Business Page without spending money on Facebook Ads.
We won’t go into the mechanics of using the Facebook Ads system here, except to say smart page owners do invest money in advertising on the platform in order to find, target and sell to qualified, potential clients/customers.
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