Facebook is an excellent tool for your business. It’s safe to say nearly everyone is familiar with it - some more so than others. Whether you’re a well-seasoned Facebooker or a newbie, this article will provide valuable insights on how to use this tool for your small business specifically.
Getting your business name “out there” can be a costly task. Many small businesses simply can’t afford the associated costs with developing a premier online presence. Not to mention marketing expenses as well. Of course, there are resources for building your online platform without going over your budget. This includes using Facebook to your advantage.
Many small businesses use Facebook in place of an official website. Though it’s not ideal, it's a place to get started. Facebook provides searchability to your business that you otherwise wouldn’t have. Even if you have a website, Facebook is a leading social network that you should be taking advantage of regardless. Let’s not forget it has over 1 billion users, to say the least.
Additionally, many small businesses don’t optimize their website for mobile viewing. Facebook is mobile ready so you won’t risk the losing mobile customers due to mobile browsing frustrations. No one likes navigating a site too large or complex on their phones. They’ll simply go somewhere else.
Positive vibes are free on facebook. Keep your clients talkign about you and it's absolutely free advertising. The reality is that there is no sensible reason to not be taking advantage of Facebook. When you compare this to Groupon, and other paid tools, your outcome is long term and more effective.
When first setting up your business profile, use a recognizable facebook picture. Select a visually pleasing cover photo that showcases your brand and company culture. Ideally the two images should coordinate aesthetically. Let’s be honest, people do judge a book by it’s cover...
Leave no stone unturned when it comes to address, phone number, website, etc. But most importantly always write a strong “About” paragraph. This is the #1 mistake business users make when creating a Facebook page for their business. Your about section should draw people in. Take the following as an example.
Don’t write something like: “City Vapor is an e-cig and vape shop located in Portland, Oregon. Stop by and check out our juices, mods and accessories.”
Do write something like: “City Vapor is a premier vape shop in Portland, Oregon that specializes in organics juices, quality mods and accessories. New customers and veterans always receive 10% off. We price match and take specialty requests. Call in or stop by to speak with a vaping expert today. Don’t forget to follow our facebook page to be the first ones notified of our weekly specials!”
There’s a lot of articles online about using Facebook for your small business. Almost all of them suggest paying for advertising on Facebook. This is not the most sound advice if your business is on a budget. Overstretching your capital can run you into the ground. That’s why we suggest implementing basic PR principles to your Facebook account.
Public Relations is simply establishing your credibility and your brand. Use your Facebook account to promote testimonials of your company, news articles written about you, charities you’re involved in or anything that demonstrates your core values and niche. Most people see straight through advertising - which doesn’t necessarily provide trust or credibility to your potential customers anyways.
Staying active on Facebook will ensure greater success for your business. By routinely posting and interacting with your followers, they will be more likely to go to your business instead of a competitor who doesn’t routinely post. Set yourself a posting schedule and stick to it. Being consistent is key. The optimal time for posting is between 1-4pm.
Always respond to complaints in a timely manner. In fact, try to do so within 24 hours. Always be professional and courteous in your replies.
Interact with your audience and thank them for coming in or for their kind words. People appreciate acknowledgement and will feel that you respect their business. Reward your loyal followers with special offers. Giveaways and surveys are a great way to engage with Facebook users to get some “shares” and “likes”.
Users are more inclined to read a post with a photo than one without. Choose appropriate images and videos that express your brand and niche. Use link posts to drive traffic to your website or other online platform.
Remember, your Facebook is not about you. It’s about your business and showing people what your business offers. Entangling your personal photos or any controversial content unrelated to your industry/niche would be inadvisable.
Promote your Facebook page at your business location to encourage others to stay in touch with your current specials and promotions. Next time you order business cards or flyers, add your facebook information and other social media platforms on them. Depending on your business type, for example let’s say a coffee shop, add it to your menu board. The goal here is to let people know where to find you so that you can stay in touch even when they’re gone.
We hope that this article has been of benefit for you. We‘ve been helping small businesses succeed since 2004 and provide them a variety of resources. To check out more helpful tools and tricks, check out our industry page for your business to see how you can continue to grow your business and reach your optimal potential.