How many customers does your small business currently have? If you haven’t created a Facebook Brand page for your small business, or have wavered in committing time to manage the page, you’re missing out on the opportunity to reach the over 800 million Facebook users – any of whom could become your next customer. Whether you’re new to using Facebook for marketing or just need to get to the next level, small businesses can leverage the features and functions of a Facebook Page to help attract, engage and retain customers. Here are 4 tips to create a successful Facebook Brand Page to interact with current customers, as well as attract more:
1. When to Post To Facebook
There has been ample research by social media thought leaders and social media firms about the best time of day and day of the week to post to your Facebook page. A report released earlier this year by Buddy Media detailed when and on what days of the week businesses should be focused on Facebook. In its report, Buddy Media encourages brands to post primarily on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and avoiding Monday if possible. Buddy Media also suggests that customer and fan engagement will be highest at 4am, 7am and 11pm – which could be possibly explained by the lack of access to Facebook if a user is employed in traditional 9-5 job. Using this data, brand and business may find the most success with a Facebook Page if they reach out to customers when they are actually using Facebook, such as before and after business hours or during the weekend.
2. What Type of Content to Post
As a business using Facebook as part of a social marketing strategy, you will want to keep your customers and fans informed about your business, industry, and local, community events. However, Facebook should NOT be used as a one-way discussion solely about your products and services. Consider posting links to your blog, photos showing your product or service in action, and questions about a topic related to your business as a status update. This can trigger discussion from your fans; as 77% of fans read the posts, news feeds and offers posted by a brand, and 34% of people who interact with brands online do so via Facebook. Keeping your content interesting encourages fan “interaction.” Additionally, by including your customers in discussions about your company, they will feel a sense of ownership – and are more likely to not only return, but recommend you to a friend.
3. How to Manage Your Time
If you already have a Facebook Fan Page for business, you know that posting content and responding to conversations requires more than just a few minutes per day. While many small businesses only manage their page once per day, instead of setting aside an hour or two chunk, it is much more effective to spread out the time you dedicate to your page, such as every 10 or 15 minutes, once per hour. You can use this time to post updates or respond to any of your fans comments. At the same time, you will need to update your page at least once per day, so that your new fans receive valuable information that can be shared with other friends, who may then become your fan. As Facebook users come from all around the globe, you may miss reaching potential customers if you only post once per day. Be prepared to adapt your social marketing schedule as you identify the needs of your fans.
4. How to Drive Traffic to Your Facebook Page
In addition to posting engaging content, running contests on Facebook can be a great way to generate fans and brand awareness. Contests on Facebook have strict rules and can be expensive, but if you have a bit of a budget and a need to quickly drive brand awareness, a contest can help make your social marketing strategy on Facebook a huge success.
Of course, don’t forget about using traditional marketing to inform customers about your page – placing a poster in your business about your page, or encouraging your customers to “Like” your page – especially in return for an exclusive discount or gift – can also drive traffic to your Facebook page.
If you’re a small business, in what ways has your Facebook page made you more successful? Let us know your story in the comments!