July 5, 2017
Contributed by Ella Jane Dantzler
Creating and maintaining a successful Facebook Business page in a sea of competing businesses can be complex and overwhelming. Your page must be strategically created and utilized to grow your audience, gather likes, find new customers, or whatever your objective might be. With over 2 billion monthly users- it is worth the investment to do it right!
Below are a few basics tips on how to poise your Facebook page for success from the get-go and create great content that keeps your audience coming back for more.
LAUNCHING YOUR PAGE
Profile picture: Choose a photo that clearly and quickly captures your brand- your logo or building are safe options. You want this to be something that people can easily recognize without reading the name attached- think of it as the Linkedin headshot of your business. Always double check to make sure your photos are the correct dimensions and high resolution.
Cover photo: Choose something that compliments your profile picture. Your cover photo should be engaging and visually appealing. If your profile picture is your logo, your cover photo might be a great spot to showcase your office building, your team, or a photo of your work (if you’re an architect, your best building- if you’re a bakery, a delicious spread of your pastries, etc.) The right picture combo will vary based on industry.
*Some Facebook business pages also allow you to add a text description- see above. Facebook is also testing a cover video option. You can read about it here.
Take the time to thoroughly set up all the information for your business. There is a surprising amount of business pages out there with incomplete or incorrect information. The most important elements on a Facebook page for lead capture and conversion are phone number, address, and hours. No profile picture in the world will cause me to visit your business if I can’t find where your location.
Complete the “More Info” and “Story” section:Capitalize on what makes you special. Include a list of your services and why you are the best at what you do. Think about this section as a miniature elevator pitch to a client.
For the story section, give us a brief background of how your business came to be, how long it has been around, why you are where you are and why you do what you do. If you have been around for 20 years and have multi-generational employees, tell us that! If you are brand new to the community and can’t wait to get involved- tell us that too! Stay away from a simple “Established in 2001”. That doesn’t help you one bit.
Ok, now that your page is set up and ready to receive visitors- get some eyes on it. The first thing we always recommend in a FB launch is to invite as many of your Facebook friends to like your page as possible. Ask your employees to do this as well and set a goal for getting at least 100 likes before running your first ad.
If you have an existing Facebook page, you’ve probably noticed that organic visibility on Facebook has greatly decreased since the launch of Facebook ads. Don’t be afraid to spend marketing dollars on a few strategic and well-placed ads to get your page some outside followers.
Create some engaging graphics, select the demographics of your audience, the objective of your ad, your budget, and run your ad. You can read more about Facebook ads here.
MAINTAINING YOUR PAGE
The #1 most important rule about maintaining a successful Facebook page is: Post good content!
But what makes good content? To be honest, quality content usually comes naturally to a business that is doing good things. It’s an authentic outpouring of your work/brand/culture.
But here are a few tips if we had to quantify it:
General content: These posts build your voice and brand identity. This might look like “It’s a beautiful day here in Seattle!” or “Closed for the holiday.” General content could also include reposting a blog from an industry expert or posing an interactive questions to engage with your audience “What new bread flavor would you like to see this fall?”
Promotional content: This is any post that is bragging on your business. It also includes deals, giveaways, highlighting successes of the company, etc.
Internal content: Internal content is underrated and underused! People want to know what your company culture is like behind the scenes- it builds trust in your brand and investment in your work. These might look like: company events, birthdays, work anniversaries, a selfie of you and your co-worker at lunch, etc. Keep these posts authentic and honest- be yourself!
The right amount of Facebook posts is a fine balance to find and will vary based on industry. It is important to have recent and relevant content to build trust with a new visitor to a page. If I go to your page and you haven’t posted since December, I might assume you are closed or aren’t worth visiting. On the other hand, flooding someone’s news feed (even with good content) can quickly result in an “Unfollow.” Posting 3-4 times per week is a pretty safe bet.
The ideal time of day to post for each business will vary based on industry- think about your customers and when they might be surfing the Facebook kingdom. If your audience is mostly stay at home moms with kids- posting during the middle of the day is going to get you the most traffic. Determine the right time for your customers and then schedule posts for that time. The option to schedule can be found in the dropdown menu next to the “Publish” button.
Now that you’ve brought followers to your page, don’t ignore them! Build a relationship with your audience through interaction. Reply to good reviews thanking them for their business and to negative reviews inquiring about the issue and how you can make it right. (Always make it a point to follow up with any negative comment, no matter how small!) Answer messages in a timely manner and like/reply to comments on your photos. If someone tags a photo of your business, repost it!