With 1.71 billion active monthly users, Facebook is a behemoth of social media. It’s a site well worth joining to expand your business presence. Simply creating a page, however, isn’t enough. Like any social platform, Facebook has rules, both written and implied, and understanding how users interact with businesses online is crucial to reaping success from a corporate social media presence.
How social media works
The first thing to consider is user activity. People log on to sites like Google to be taken somewhere else. When it comes to social media, those sites are the end destination in themselves, and users are far less likely to click on a link that takes them away from that site.
That doesn’t mean you can’t engage with your potential customers through social media. Whether you’re seeking visibility, sales, or reviews, you can interact with your target base providing you understand the platform you’re utilizing to reach them.
The most important thing to remember about Facebook is that people who are on it don’t want to leave. In order to engage with them, you have to work with the platform you’re on. There’s no point opening a business page and linking continually to your website without giving browsers an incentive to go there. Yes, funny, interesting, or informative articles can generate a lot of hits through Facebook, but if that’s all you’re sharing, you’re missing out on valuable interaction on Facebook itself.
The Facebook timeline is presented to each user according to an algorithm that determines what content they’d like to see. This isn’t limited to the posts of their friends or the pages they like. They also see content from friends of friends, or from new pages the algorithm calculates they’d be interested in. Boost your visibility by encouraging interaction from your existing fans. This is then see by new people who might not have been previously exposed to your brand. The simplest, most effective way of doing this on Facebook is by providing regular local content of value.
What content works?
Tailor your content to your business at all times, although you don’t necessarily have to be specific about your business. Fans will quickly grow bored of a page that posts nothing but “Buy our product!” Instead, think about your target audience, and what interests them about your services or product. If you run a yarn shop, it makes sense to post knitting patterns and photos of finished projects. If you’re a mechanic, try sharing quick tips for keeping an engine running, or reminders for annual maintenance.
The most important thing when coming up with your content is to ask what value it has to the consumer. It could be a funny picture whose value is in making them smile, it could be a piece of advice that will save them $50 at their next oil change. Remember the Facebook “like” button, and consider how you can get people to see your post and hit it. Every time somebody “likes” your post, you’ve increased its visibility—and thus, your brand’s—through their friends network.
Social media is a great tool for any business owner, providing you engage with it on its own terms. Attempts to drive your audience to third-party sites like your website or sales page should be used sparingly. Focus instead on building an engaged audience on Facebook in order to reap the biggest dividends.
If you’re not sure how to start, pick a plan and let TechTe.am’s friendly experts help.