Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube, FourSquare, Digg, Delicious… The list goes on and on. It’s not really surprising that there are so many social networks out there; Americans spend an average of 30-40 hours a week on the internet– and 25% of that time is spent on social media websites and blogs. As a business owner if you’re ignoring these stats, it’s costing you money.
We have already talked about the basic level of benefits that come from using social media for a business. It’s free, and it can reach a wide audience. It’s also extremely easy to target your audience with social media with a little research, and an investment of time. In this post, I’ll be focusing on the use of Facebook for your business, but stay tuned for tips for other social sites.
Now, maybe you’re not the biggest fan of Facebook- I can understand that. The beautiful thing is: Facebook understands that too. If you’re going to be using Facebook as a business, then you need to set up a business Facebook page. This will require you to create your own personal account, but from there you can immediately create a business page.
What is a business page?
A business page is one of those pages that you just have to “Like” to get updates from them, there is no “friend request “with a business page. It is a one-sided follow.A business page is also like a small free website for you, if someone searches your company name on the internet your business page will appear in their search results.
Is it really that important?
Well, 91% of local searches said they used Facebook to find local businesses online, and 71% of people of social media state that they are more likely to buy from a company or business that they follow online. So yes. It’s important.
How to build up your page
One of the most common things I have noticed with business Facebook pages is that there was a brief burst of posting when the page first was started, and then it peters off to nothing- usually when the likes didn’t come pouring in as was hoped for. Social media takes time to build up, and you have to be willing to invest that time if it’s going to work for you. Here are some tips:
1.) Post every day (it won’t take you more than 5 minutes), and don’t always try to sell something. If people are following you on social media, they want interesting content, not for you to be throwing products or services at them constantly. If users know that all you ever post is something to buy, they may start zooming by your posts without actually looking at them.
2.) Engage your followers, and be creative. Post polls, contests etc. to get users to like and comment on your posts. (Every time one of your followers likes or comments on a post, that shows up in their feed which brings your brand to all of their friends.
3.) Like other pages and comment on their posts. Find other local businesses in the area and share their content. Most likely, they will like your page back.
4.) Tell people your business is on social media, and give them a reason to follow it (realtors can tell people that their newest listings go up on Facebook right away, other business can offer Facebook only coupons)
5.) If you have multiple people at your business, encourage them to like your page and share your posts with their followers.
6.) Hashtag away. Facebook recently got on the #hashtag bandwagon, and it’s worth it to take advantage of this. A hashtag groups your post in with all other posts that have used that hashtag. Create a hashtag of your business name and include that on all of your posts(this allows people to see everything you’ve ever posted with that tag) and use popular relevent hashtags to help users come across your content. Investing a few moments everyday to search what other businesses are using the same tags as you can also help you build your follower base.
And remember to be PATIENT. Your page will not bloom overnight to be the most popular page on the Internet, but by following these tips your page will steadily grow, along with your business.