When it comes to social media and small business there are a few questions we get a lot:
But how do you get noticed and stand out on a platform that’s increasingly becoming oversaturated with more and more competition? Increasing the size of your following has tangible benefits in that your posts have a better chance to reach more people, but that doesn’t guarantee they’ll interact with your stuff.
So, the answer is actually hard work and dedication, but I’m going to give you some easy-to-follow advice and step-by-step tips to get you started and help jumpstart your Facebook business page Likes and growth.
What are you hoping to accomplish, and how will you measure your success? Is your goal to drive people to your website? Produce leads? Build brand awareness? Or just increase the size of your following?
Your goal might be multifaceted, but to reach your goal, it needs to be clearly defined. You can’t reach it if you don’t know what “it” is.
SEO expert Neil Patel writes that random fans are useless, contending that larger fan bases may seem beneficial, but they actually hurt your page’s organic reach, lower engagement rates and diminish the effectiveness of your content.
For the long-term success of your page, Patel (and MayeCreate Design) recommend fostering smaller, more targeted communities. Speak to the people who are actually interested in your product or service. Target fans, not followers.
Understand what you’re selling and how your company is different from others in your industry, then express it online to stand out.
Take a look around your page’s Insights tab and keep these measurements in mind: reach, paid reach and viral reach. Not sure what they mean? We’ve got you covered with some definitions down below.
After you’ve done all that high-level thinking to set yourself up for success it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get dirty.
Time to get back to basics with some actionable work!
Here’s some low hanging fruit: Clean up your Facebook profile, and make sure it’s filled out in full.
A lot of marketers get online, set up their profile, start posting good stuff and wonder why no one is following them. They find it easy on their personal page, why isn’t the same thing happening for their business?
Well, you probably set up your personal profile a decade ago when Facebook was still shiny and new, and despite what you somewhat romantically recollect, it didn’t start as a fully populated list. Your personal page grew over time, and it grew because you asked the people you met to like you on Facebook. After a while it just became second nature.
Make a new friend in real life, add them on Facebook. Doing this for your business too can get you similar results, as long as you do it in a professional and methodical way by making it part of your process.
Time to get more granular….
You’ve got your plan, you’ve polished your profile and you’ve gotten serious about sending people to your page. Everything is moving in the right direction. Now we are going to go over some of the finer points of content writing so you can improve the quality of your posts, increase your viral reach and ultimately build up more Likes for your Facebook business page:
Why is it so important to write engaging content? Because the best kind of reach is viral reach.
Engaging content doesn’t just mean posts that are good.
You want people to react and engage with your content so other users will see the activity: your message gets out to more people. That’s just efficient marketing.
You need people to react and engage with your content so they’re more likely to see your posts or marketing in the first place. That’s just math.
Facebook is obsessed with it’s end user experience, which makes sense: Facebook needs people to keep using Facebook. To keep people coming back, Facebook tries to show users content it thinks they’ll find valuable or relevant to their lives.
The Facebook algorithm for displaying content is ever-evolving, but weighed heavily in favor of showing organic personal content, and it will only continue to skew in that direction.
My Facebook feed is much more likely to show me a picture of my friends cute kids than your post about… concrete. To get your content seen — now and in the future — your posts need be deemed as valuable, and Facebook calculates value based largely on engagement.
When you produce a post that people like, comment on, or share, Facebook registers your post as having value and will be more likely to show it — and your future posts to others. This is why a carpet-bombing strategy of just posting a million times doesn’t work — people will ignore your content, Facebook will infer that it’s not valuable, and that will actually hurt your content impressions in the future.
We told you why to do it, now we are going to tell you how to do it…
There is really no limit to the types of posts you can create using your evergreen content strategy. Keep an eye on what competitors and other pages you admire are posting. Emulate what they’re finding success with, but put your brand’s own unique spin on it.
Alright, let’s say you’ve done your research, and you’ve started posting. You’re starting to see positive results, but just because it works doesn’t mean you can just reproduce the same thing over and over. It looks spammy, gets stale and people hate that. It’s important to be mindful of the types of content you are producing and vary those types to keep your engagement rates high.
It’s best to vary your posts to include different types of content:
These are our bread and butter. This is your brand message, displayed in varied and creative ways. The key thing to remember is your content can not be overly promotional. Experts suggest a ratio of 80% social posts with only 20% being promotional. That means to be effective the vast majority of your content should be engaging, evergreen content that your fans find valuable, and if you do that you can occasionally remind them of the product or service your provide.
Since we can’t be overly self-promotional, a good way to remind followers about our actual business is through authority building posts. Weigh in on industry specific news, trends and changes. Repurpose these posts in different ways so your fans can come to see you as a leader and expert in your field.
Facebook is cutting down on traffic coming from business pages in favor of user-generated content. Personal posts are a great way to encourage fans to organically post content to your page that you can share, both reducing the content you need to produce and increasing your viral reach.
I know Facebook is serious business, but personal posts can offer your fans the opportunity to more firmly align themselves with your brand identity, which shows off your company culture and the personality of your employees.
To increase the number of Likes on your Facebook business page, you can’t just set it and forget it. Monitor your page and your content for opportunities to engage with your followers — be present: liking, commenting and sharing as an active member of the community that you are trying to foster. This practice will help you get their help as brand evangelists for your Facebook business page.
You probably learned in kindergarten something akin to: “sharing is caring” or “caring is sharing.” (Rhymes are great for implied wisdom.)
Either way, it’s still true today when thinking about effective social media marketing.
Here are some tips to help you stay engaged with your following:
Maybe not your direct competitors, but all the people who are industry adjacent — especially people you admire and would like to work with.
Have a great supplier who never lets you down? Follow them on Facebook, like and share their stuff. Create your own post complimenting them on their consistently great work. They will probably appreciate it and may start to like and share all of your content too, improving your viral reach.
Using social tags is a great way to reach out to other people or brands you don’t know directly. So when you create that post celebrating your great supplier, don’t forget to tag them. Social tags (or @ mentions) will notify the person you’re tagging and allow your followers to easily find them on Facebook.
For example we are @MayeCreate on Facebook. If you tag us in a post or like us on Facebook, we may like or share your post (we definitely will).
This method of social tagging can be great for “borrowing” another brand’s reach. More importantly, it’s a great way to build relationships within your field.
Need another compelling reason to encourage engagement when producing your content? Facebook will allow you to invite the people who reacted to your post to like your business page. So everytime someone reacts to your Facebook content (Like, Love, Haha, Wow, Sad or Angry) do that. It’s that simple…. All you’ve got to do is click on the link next to the reaction on the actual post to bring up a list of everyone who reacted to that post.
Click on your post reactions to bring up a list of people you can invite to Like your page.
This can be an effective way to invite new fans who are already interacting with your content to like your page, or to remind others who may not realize they aren’t following you directly.
Behavioral scientists call this a “nudge.” The rate of return on this can vary, as many people will choose to ignore your request (or possibly not even notice), but asking for likes can be a very effective method for increasing the number of followers on newer or less-followed pages.
Dig deeper into the Facebook Insights analytics to learn as much as you can about your audience. Information like When Your Fans are Online can help you refine your posting strategy to not only be more effective but simply be available when your audience is online.
If your audience is largely online during off business hours I’m not suggesting you stay up all night, but if you know most of your interaction will be coming in the middle of the night, you can plan to monitor it and engage with it first thing every morning to meet your audiences’ expectations.
Experts suggest the best time to post is when people aren’t busy. The most recommended time Monday through Friday seems to be around 3 PM. But I’m not telling you when the best time to post is, I’m asking. You can use your Facebook insights to target the times when the largest segment of your audience is online, or you can post at “off times” to try to publish content when there is less competition for attention.
There is no magic time that will guarantee your success, instead strategically post on a case by case basis depending on the nature of the content and the specific audience you are targeting. A little bit of thought and effort in scheduling can yield great results.
Purchasing paid reach by boosting posts is an effective way to increase your own following, and it’s only becoming more efficient.
Through Facebook’s audience targeting, you can get very specific about the people you want to reach and tailor your content specifically to appeal to them. By asking for likes, you even get a second chance to nudge a potential new fan into following your page.
Our advice when starting out with paid reach is to watch your content and boost the posts that are already performing well. A small investment on a post you know is already garnering engagement will always return greater results than boosting alone.
By cross promote, we mean invite people from your other social media channels to follow you on Facebook. Just be sure to tell them how they’ll benefit from following both — highlight the perks they’ll get from your Facebook page they won’t get elsewhere, like updates, sales or exclusive content.
Cross promoting on different social channels also offers an opportunity to speak to new audiences with different interests. Don’t think of your different social channels as isolated platforms; instead, view them as tools your business can wield to achieve your ultimate social media goals.
So what’s it take to build your Facebook business page?
And let’s throw in one more:
The time part is often the most difficult and costly resource to commit to any project, and social media is no different. If you commit to it you will enjoy the benefits for your SEO and brand recognition that a healthy Facebook presence provides. There will be peaks and valleys, and more frequently plateaus — but the good news is you’re already on your way. With the information we’ve covered you’re already well equipped, and if you stay engaged to your new plan, you will connect with your audience and achieve your goal of getting more likes for your Facebook business page.
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