Getting Started With Facebook As A Small Business
I’m pretty sure that by now every one of us has heard of Facebook. Not only is it one of the biggest social media platforms in the world, but in recent years (and weeks) it has gained popularity and notoriety amongst individuals and small businesses alike.
Now, most business owners have a love-hate relationship with Facebook and admittedly it does have some areas that aren’t so popular, for example, many people dislike that the platform has become more ad based in recent years and it has become harder and harder to organically reach your audience on Facebook. However, this shouldn’t stop you from using the platform for your business because there are lots of great things about it too. For example, as one of the most popular social media outlets in the world, you have the opportunity to connect with lots and lots of people. Plus, it’s a social network that the less techy tend to feel more comfortable with as they have heard of it and most likely seen it being used by other friends or family members in the past.
So, to help you find your way through Facebook we have a very simple guide to help.
WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE A FACEBOOK PAGE?
A Facebook page is different to your personal Facebook page and is a place for you to post business-related content to your audience. Let me show you a few reasons why you should have a Facebook page for business, and not just use your personal account.
- It’s more professional. Your customers are going to get business-related content on their newsfeed and won’t come across your family pictures, “this time last year posts” or other messages that might not be appropriate for anyone other than family and friends.
- Facebook is a really interactive way of connecting with your clients compared to other social media channels.
- Most people have a Facebook account nowadays and if they do, they tend to visit the site at least once a day so it’s a great place to be sharing content and updates about your business.
- Even though we don’t want clients seeing your personal Facebook account, Facebook is a great place to share a more personal side of your business and can turn passing visitors into loyal fans.
- Anyone who has already liked your Facebook page is already interested in what you have to offer, so they are the perfect audience to market to.
- Facebook makes it really easy for clients to share, like and comment on your content and could result in new customers.
GETTING STARTED ON FACEBOOK
- Firstly you’ll need to set up a Facebook page. This is the best choice for a professional photographer. However, if you are running a business that involves a lot of people, such as a member’s club, then a Facebook group might be better suited.
You can set up a Facebook page by logging into Facebook > click on the small downward arrow in the top right-hand corner > create page.
You can set up a Facebook group by logging into Facebook > click on the small downward arrow in the top right-hand corner > create group.
- Add a profile image or photo. Try to be consistent with your social media images, so use the same image or logo that you have on Instagram, Twitter etc so that your account is recognisable to your audience.
- Create a cover image. Again, you want your cover image to be consistent with your other social platforms. The recommended size for your cover image is 851px wide and 315px high and saved as a .png file to show the best quality.
- Profile description. Keep your profile description simple, to the point and obvious. Make sure you keep the information the same for your other social platforms. Fill in as much information as you can so that it is easy for potential customers to find you.
- Invitations. Send an invitation to your current clients via email to join your Facebook page so that they can keep up to date with your news and special offers.
BUILD YOUR FOLLOWING
- Let them like you. Make it easy for clients to follow you on Facebook by adding a Facebook like button to your website.
- Be consistent. You should try to post to your Facebook page on a consistent, regular basis. This doesn’t have to be every day but try to aim for one a week, fortnight or monthly – enough to keep you on your client’s radar. Equally, don’t over-do it. Facebook newsfeeds don’t update as quickly as other social media platforms such as Twitter or Instagram so any more than 2-3 times a day might start to get annoying for followers.
- Interact. Facebook is a great place for interacting with your followers and other businesses. Respond to questions and like their comments so that your clients feel valued and noticed.
- Get clients involved. Try to get your followers involved with your Facebook page. Ask followers questions, encourage interaction. The more you can get them involved, the more you can tailor your business to them and turn passing customers into loyal clients.
- Variety. Use a variety of posts on your page including images, videos or just text. The Facebook algorithm likes a variety of content so the more you mix it up the more likely your posts are to show up on reader’s newsfeeds.
- What’s your story? Facebook allows you to build your brand and expand your business reach. It is a great way to share – from a fleeting thought to a celebrated milestone to feedback from clients.
- What are your competitors doing? Checking out your competition shouldn’t be you comparing yourself to others, however, seeing what is and isn’t working so well for you might give you an insight into how you could improve.
- Who are you going to follow? Spending time on other Facebook pages and groups will benefit your own page. You could make notes of what you like or don’t like about other pages or plan to share similar topics with others.
- Add your URL. Add your website URL to the details of your Facebook page as well as on your personal Facebook page. This might lead to more clicks and likes.
- Social overload. You don’t want to overload your customers so make sure you don’t link Facebook to too many other accounts. You don’t want every tweet, every Instagram post or every pin appearing on Facebook because it will overload your customer base and make your page look a bit boring with double ups etc.
- Add a call-to-action button. There are several pre-made call-to-action buttons that you can choose from for your Facebook page. These include sign up, shop now, contact us, book now, use app, watch video and play game. You can also change this button as often as you need, to suit your current business plans.
- Pin important posts. If you are offering a special discount or going to be attending a special event then you want as many customers as possible to see it. You can make this easier by pinning these posts to the top of your Facebook page so that they are the first thing your customer sees.
- Auto-Posting. There are lots of widgets that you can install into WordPress that automatically post your blog posts to your social media platforms. Our favourite is the NextScripts: Social Networks Auto-Poster which automatically posts blog posts to Facebook, Twitter and Google+ just by pressing the “publish” button.
- Schedule Posts. There are lots of programmes that allow you to schedule social media posts, some of which include; Hootsuite, CoSchedule and Buffer. HootSuite can be used for free but only allows you to schedule Twitter and Google+ whereas CoSchedule and Buffer are far more integrated and broad.
- Insights. Click on the “insights” tab on your Facebook page to see your Facebook analytics. These are very similar to Google analytics. You can see when most people are online, where they are located, their gender, how your posts are performing and what’s popular/what’s not.
If you feel overwhelmed about where to start, make sure you check out the Social Media Service. We’ll happily create some great profile text and beautifully personalised branding for you to upload straight to your new Facebook page.